Hi all, I'm doing the London marathon for charadeeee in a few weeks and for the first time I have family coming to watch, this is rare as they work weekends but have booked this off ages ago. I want to make sure all goes well with them watching so they know exactly where to go etc. 2 of the party are elderly but like a walk but Id like to keep it as little as possible.Ideally they'd like to see me pass 3 times, I've stated tower bridge at mile 12 as a good one, maybe the first as they are staying at a hotel near the London eye in the same location. Then obviously near the end too maybe corner where Buckingham palace is mile 26. But the 3rd spot not sure. Or perhaps mile 14 then they cross the road if they can (anyone know this) and see me at mile 22 or something then get to mile 25/6 quickly (best way taxi or tube? if tube which one) how long will tube take to get to near finish line mile 25 etc.So what im trying to do is give them step by step instructions so they dont get lost and can get to each point easily, they can if need be jump in a taxi between spots as there will be 5 of them. I'd prefer to avoid tubes etc as they will get confused I know.Can any London dwellers help with suggestions thanks, see map below and also link to interactive map. I'll probably be doing 11 minute miles and cross the start line about 10.15am.Its a special occasion with grandparents coming so just want to make it a great day for them.Thankshttp://www.virginlondonmarathon.com/interactive-map/
It's really hard to move around London on marathon day, especially getting anywhere near the finish.
Some tube stations near the route are actually CLOSED on race day, as they get too crowded, so you have to walk to ones that are further away.
There are queues to get into those that are open, as they control the numbers of people in the station for safety.
It took me longer to get from mile 21 to the finish than for my OH to run it. He was finished, changed and waiting for ME.
Personally, even though I know my way round the system, I don't like coming into London to spectate. It's just too crowded it's horrible, and it takes so long to get anywhere.
The best idea is to stay close to tube stations and the quieter parts of the course.
The area around Canary Wharf (Canary Wharf, Mudchute, Westferry stations) is busier than it used to be but is still fairly comfortable for spectating.
The meet and greet area at the end will be a scrum so be prepared for that.
The bottom line is that it's tough getting around for even fit, healthy intrepid people with tons of patience so it's going to be tough on anyone elderly, especially if it's hot, cold or very wet. If you want to be fair on them it's best to keep them away from the very busy areas, even if it means seeing less of you.
Ahem... dont tell anyone, but my usual route is this:
start (I volunteer)
walk to lewishamtrain to charing crosswalk down whitehall to Westminster (mile 25 ish)I usually get there to see the elite men come in if I leave at 10, but the race is slightly different start time wise this year so bear that in mind.Now it would be possible to add in a short detour to mile 24 ish by getting off at charing cross and walking back to embankment down villiers street and then up whitehall place bck to whitehall. Embankment is busy. Whitehall is usually not too bad, they would need to go right to the end to see you but its pretty good views normally. Also they can then wait around for you as you come out of the finish area in Horse Guards Parade, up the steps past the Foreign office on King Charles Street
My family always stand between mile 13-14 then go through the underpass to 22 miles. They always get good spots and at all of my 7 Londons I have seen them at both places every time.
That's what I've done a few times, but getting from 21/22 to the finish is a real pain and takes longer than running it!
I've walked from there to Tower Hill, queued to get on the underground to Embankment, then met my OH (finished and changed and there boefore me) in Trafalgar Square.
Ah but that's where I score Wilkie! I get a good couple of hours in the pub before they find me!
ok so miles 13-14 then 22 sounds ideal, what underpass please? Also could they not walk a few blocks away from course and get a taxi to finish?
What areas is the 13-14 mile area near underpass you speak of please so I can google map it and see where they can stand and then get to underpass you speak of.
why do you want them at the finish...its bedlem there. get them to spectate away from the finish and you come to them to find after the race.
docklands was a decent spectating place in previous yrs
if you want them at the finish.then get them to go straight there early and watch all the finishers until you arrive.......getting around is a nightmare.especially if you are not familiar with it all
Just looking at that now, we are staying near London eye so they could get a boat from there to nearest point to mile 13.5 then cross over to mile 22, its just that last part getting back to finish, its really important they get to finish before me to see me pass, anywhere from mile 25 to 26.2.
ok in theory they could get boat from London eye to tower bridge, walk a bit to mile 13.5 see me pass then go underpass to see me mile 22 then get boat back to London eye and walk to mall finish area to see me pass.
Theoretically, it's a 20 minute journey on public transport from Limehouse (the DLR and rail stations are near the 13.5/22M points) to Westminster (which is one of the nearest stations to the finish). The problem is that it's not clear from the TFL website (tfl.gov.uk) which tube stations will be entry/exit only and no-one can predict how long the queues will be! I would echo the comments about the finish being difficult to navigate on race day and so although they have about 45/50 minutes after you pass them at mile 22 to get to the finish, which should be enough, in reality it almost certainly won't be. It might be best to have your supporters in 2 groups: one group can do the mile 13.5/mile 22 point and one can be at the finish to be sure they see you.
Mark, if the most important thing is seeing you near the finish then I'd ditch waiting for you at 22 miles. Unless you're walking from there they won't have much time to get there and find a spectator spot before you go past.
I know you wanted to avoid the tube, but if they're staying near London Eye they could stick to the jubilee line: waterloo to canada water (9 miles), on to canary wharf (19), back to westminster (25). That's what my family have done for the last few years, anyway.
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