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Sheffield half marathon bosses step down

Sheffield Half Marathon no water- Rebel runners take to the street as the timing car is stranded

Sheffield Half Marathon no water- Rebel runners take to the street as the timing car is stranded

The organisers of the botched Sheffield Half Marathon have announced they are standing down - and will not be putting on the race again after this year’s water supply fiasco.

A statement from Sheffield Marathon Limited, the not-for-profit organisation which has staged the race since 1982, said organisers have decided they will not be involved in future marathons.

Officials today revealed they had received abusive emails, calls and letters in the wake of this year’s event.

They said they had taken the decision not to be involved again within 48 hours of this year’s cancelled race - but had delayed the announcement to bring an ‘orderly conclusion’ to the row.

The race in April was cancelled, due to a lack of water, while runners waited on the start line.

But thousands of runners still completed the course, with some not aware of the cancellation because they couldn’t hear the announcement.

In the days afterwards, supplier Water Direct said it was not paid by Sheffield Marathon Ltd - but organisers said they were never told to pay in advance. The explanation is still not clear.

Robert Jackson, chairman of Sheffield Marathon Ltd, said: “None of us wanted this to happen or for it to end like this. The last few weeks have been some of the worst of our lives.

“For the last 30 years we have given up our time to put on this race, for no other reason than to benefit others, but now we feel it is time to step aside and let someone else take the strain.

“Whatever the future holds, we hope Sheffield people will come together to rebuild and stage a road race the city deserves, one which continues to support local good causes.”

Runner Christian Evans, 21, from Kelham Island, said: “I think they lost the backing of the people.”

But he said it would be a loss to the city if the event did not return with new organisers.

Star reader Dave Payling added: “I hope it comes back stronger.”

 

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