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This year’s Great North Run in September has been cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The iconic half marathon race, which raises more than £25 million for charity, was due to take place on 13 September, but race organisers have now confirmed it will not go ahead due to health risks.

A statement read: “Today, we have confirmed the cancellation of the 2020 Great North Run. The impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic mean it isn’t possible to stage the event as planned this year.

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“We haven’t taken this decision lightly. The Great North Run raises over £25m for charity, and is an important day in the North East calendar.

“Over the past few months, we’ve worked hard, and in close consultation with our medical teams, local authorities and key partners to try and find a way to run the Great North Run which both observes social distancing rules, and, crucially, doesn’t impact on our local NHS. We have also looked at holding the Great North Run later in the year.

“But, as things stand, and even as the situation improves, it isn’t going to be possible to meet these goals with any certainty, and so, with just under three months to go we have concluded that the best course of action is to cancel.

We know how disappointing this is, but we’re sure everyone will understand why this decision has been made.

Thank you for your patience and understanding.”

The 40th Great North Run is now scheduled to take place on 12 September 2021, while the Great Manchester Run on 6 September has also been cancelled, with its next edition of the race set for 23 May, 2021.

Runners who had their place confirmed by the 2020 Ballot or through membership have the option of rolling their entry over to next year. While charity runners should wait to be contacted directly in the coming days or weeks to secure a place at next year’s race.

While the rescheduled London Marathon remains on for now, with 4 October the revised date.

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