Human Race, organiser of the Therme Manchester Marathon and Manchester Half, has reported that the sporting events added £7.4 million to the local economy when they returned to the city on October 10.

With a record number of 40,000 runners entered across both events, runners were able to enjoy local hospitality, transport and accommodation over the event weekend from October 9-10. This year also welcomed in a new route for the Therme Manchester Marathon, with the starting section heading into the city centre for the first time in the event’s history. The move ensured that local businesses in the city centre saw a beneficial increase in trade.

This year, Human Race implemented a series of COVID-19 health and safety measures in order to protect both runners and spectators. A Spectator Guide was introduced encouraging only one spectator per runner, spectators to keep a safe distance from others, avoiding high-fiving and touching runners, and, for the first time, spectators were not allowed in the Athlete’s Village, Start and Finish areas. Digital coverage of the event was also boosted so that supporters could watch from afar and follow the action, with a live feed broadcast, live coverage on the website and live tracking.

With spectator guidelines in place informing supporters how they can spectate safely, the Therme Manchester Marathon and Manchester Half saw more than 50,000 spectators attending the event weekend. With more than 17,000 travelling from outside Greater Manchester, and spending an average two nights in commercial accommodation in the region, this bought in a revenue of £4.7 million.

Furthermore, more than 8,000 spectators stayed in non-commercial accommodation and 21,600 visitors attended on the day which brought in £2.4 million spend to the area.

Nick Rusling, CEO of Human Race, said: “There was a lot of disappointment in 2020 for all involved, when so many much- loved events were not able to go ahead due to coronavirus. We were delighted to be welcoming back thousands of runners to one of the UK’s greatest cities, and Manchester did not disappoint! The people of Manchester continue to make this event so special and create a true welcoming home for our runners.

“With all of our events, we commit ourselves to create a positive impact on the local area, and we are elated to be in a position where we can contribute to the economy, support businesses, and give back to the community in the form of charitable donations from the Trafford Active Fund. This year, we continued to focus on sustainability and the environmental impact of our events, and we implemented a number of measures to ensure we were as ‘green’ as we could be.”