Run To The Beat 2013 to cut off Charlton’s Sunday footballers

(This information is now out of date – see this post on 853 for 2013’s route)

Run to the Beat 2013 route
The Run to the Beat route for 8 September 2013 (updated 29 March 2013).

Charlton Champion exclusive: Plans for this year’s Run To The Beat half-marathon will cut off Sunday footballers in Charlton Park and Meridian Sports Club, this website can reveal.

The route proposed by organisers will enclose Charlton Park on three sides and cut off access to the adjacent Meridian Sports Club. Both are used by scores of Sunday morning footballers each morning.

Run to the Beat, run commercially to promote a sportswear firm, has run every year since 2008, but has been regularly criticised by locals for poor communication and its road closures, as its circular route effectively shuts in residents in parts of Greenwich, Blackheath, Charlton and Woolwich for most of the day.

Greenwich Council ignored a resolution from local Labour Party members to give the race the go-ahead without full consultation. The council later admitted “errors” had been made in organising the race.

This year’s race – scheduled for 8 September – was launched on Monday, but full details of the route have not been publicly revealed, apart from a decision to reverse the direction of the route, divert it away from Woolwich town centre and to start/finish it in Greenwich Park.

However, this website has seen plans which involve a change of route through Charlton, so the race avoids The Village to run via Charlton Road, Hornfair Road, Canberra Road, Charlton Park Lane, Cemetery Road and Little Heath. It then continues into Woolwich via Hillreach, Repository Road, Ha Ha Road, Grand Depot Road, John Wilson Street and Woolwich Church Street. Route maps indicate possible short diversions in the route at Royal Artillery Barracks and Artillery Place.

Back into Charlton, the race will run via Woolwich Road, Anchor & Hope Lane and Bugsby’s Way, before heading onto the Greenwich peninsula, where the route is not yet clear.

Race organisers IMG told the News Shopper newspaper that the loss of the route through Woolwich town centre would be made up by using Greenwich Park. However, it appears encircling Charlton Park is also part of the plan to avoid using Woolwich’s Royal Arsenal development.

Local councillors have been in discussions with them over the route, trying to persuade organisers to switch to a route which would not cut residents off. Organisers plan to repoen roads around Charlton Park at 11.45am and Woolwich Road at 1.20pm.

Organisers would only send out a generic launch press release when asked for details of the route. A petition against the race route has been launched by Charlton resident and Labour Party activist Annie Keys, while local councillors are keen to hear feedback.

7 thoughts on “Run To The Beat 2013 to cut off Charlton’s Sunday footballers

  1. Boneyyboy March 22, 2013 / 13:10

    I’m not a fan of Run to the Beat. My choice would be for only one major Sunday close down a yaer and that would be for the London Marathon. However, there is one feature of the RTTB course that the Marathon organisers could learn from and adopt.. The route doesn’t close the whole of Trafalar Road/Woolwich Road, so car users in Charlton and Westcombe Park have a way in and out of the area via the Woolwich Road flyover and the A102 and perhaps more importantly, emergency services have a way in. A change to the Marathon route to take in Bugsbys Way and Blackwall Lane could achieve similar benefits. Obviously this is longer than the current route, so some other adjustments would be needed. I thinks that its way too late to seek a change to thhis year’s marathon route, but what do other Charlton residentt think of this ? Should we pussh for this change in future years ?

    • Darryl March 22, 2013 / 13:39

      JJ77 – True, just over in Kidbrooke there’s the London Marathon Playing Field, which is packed on Sunday mornings. RTTB doesn’t leave a legacy, the marathon does.

      Boneyboy – I think switching the London Marathon away from people’s homes would kill it, to be honest.

      It’s what makes the marathon a joy and RTTB a pain in the arse – we get enjoyment out of the marathon that we don’t get out of RTTB.

  2. JJ77 March 22, 2013 / 13:21

    I have slightly mixed feelings about this. I live one of the Charlton Roads that will be cut off during the race and its true that the disruption can be a real pain. However the race itself and the music points are kind of fun and I rather like the hour or two of peaceful car free roads once the runners have gone past but before the roads officially reopen.
    I think what I object to more is the council ‘giving away’ public access to the roads to a comercial venture for free. I think i would feel more sympathetic if the race organisers (and sponsor?) made a contribution to the community they impact. Cor what its worth i have an idea. The public loos in Charlton park by the Old Cottage Coffee shop and the out door gym are pretty grim despite the recent half harted whitewash of the outside. We have contacted the council about some sort of refurbishment and providing baby change facilities but have been told there is no budget available. Paying for this and perhaps other small local projects along the route would seem to be an ideal way of giving somrthing back to the communities who are disrupted.

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