13 Sep 2021
Runners put in the overtime at Brighton Marathon
09 Sep 2021
Brighton kicks off delayed Spring marathon season
01 Sep 2021
It's a 'point to pint' gem of a race
06 Jul 2021
Racers were back on track for the Goodwood GP
Race Listing for Sussex
|19 Sep 2021||Great Northiam Run||Northiam Playing Fields, Northiam||Results|
|26 Sep 2021||OutRunCancer 5K & 10K||The Fox Inn, Patching|
|26 Sep 2021||Lancing College 10K||Lancing College, Lancing|
|26 Sep 2021||Tempo 10K of Eastbourne||Holywell Cafe, Eastbourne|
|26 Sep 2021||Running Grand Prix Goodwood 5K, 10K, Half, 20 Mile & Marathon September||Goodwood Motor Circuit, Chichester|
|26 Sep 2021||East Grinstead 10K||Imberhorne Upper School, East Grinstead|
|26 Sep 2021||Barns Green Half Marathon||Village Hall, Barns Green|
|26 Sep 2021||Barns Green 10K||Village Hall, Barns Green|
|02 Oct 2021||Sussex Downs Half Marathon||Plumpton Racecourse, Lewes|
|03 Oct 2021||Chichester Half Marathon, 10 Mile & Relay||Chichester College, Chichester|
|03 Oct 2021||RISE 8K Undercliff Run for Women||Saltdean, Brighton|
|03 Oct 2021||Lewes Downland 10 & 5 Mile||Wallands Community Primary School, Lewes|
|03 Oct 2021||Pulborough Vineyards Run October||Nutbourne Vineyards, Pulborough|
|09 Oct 2021||Spartan Races South East Weekend||Pippingford Park, Nutley|
|10 Oct 2021||Brighton Half Marathon||Madeira Drive, Brighton|
|10 Oct 2021||Spartan Trail Half Marathon and 10K South East||Pippingford Park, Nutley|
|10 Oct 2021||Worthing 10K||Marine Parade, Worthing|
|17 Oct 2021||Beachy Head Half Marathon||Seafront, Eastbourne|
|17 Oct 2021||Worthing Seafront 10K||Beach House (next to Splashpoint), Worthing|
|23 Oct 2021||South Downs Off Road Half Marathon Part 1||Goodwood Racecourse, Chichester|
|23 Oct 2021||South Downs Off Road Half Marathon Part 2||Goodwood Racecourse, Chichester|
|23 Oct 2021||Beachy Head Marathon||Seafront, Eastbourne|
|23 Oct 2021||Fortitude Ultra Autumn||Pippingford Park, Uckfield|
|24 Oct 2021||Beachy Head 10K||Seafront, Eastbourne|
|24 Oct 2021||K2 Crawley 10K||K2 Crawley, Crawley|
|24 Oct 2021||Lancing 10K||Seafront, Lancing|
|06 Nov 2021||Maverick Adidas Terrex Frontier South Downs||Slindon College, Slindon|
|07 Nov 2021||Beckley 10K||Beckley Village Centre, Beckley, Nr Rye|
|13 Nov 2021||Poppy Half Marathon, 10K & 5K||Polegrove Park, Bexhill on Sea|
|20 Nov 2021||Chichester Harbour Run Thorney Island||Thorney Island, Emsworth|
|21 Nov 2021||Brighton 10K||Madeira Drive, Brighton|
|21 Nov 2021||Crowborough 10K||Beacon Academy, Crowborough|
|27 Nov 2021||Maverick Exposure Lights Dark West Sussex||Amberley Museum, Arundel|
|27 Nov 2021||Maverick Adidas Terrex Original West Sussex||Amberley Museum, Arundel|
|05 Dec 2021||Running Grand Prix Goodwood 5K, 10K, Half, 20 Mile & Marathon December||Goodwood Motor Circuit, Chichester|
|05 Dec 2021||Mince Pie Ten Mile||Peacehaven Leisure Centre, Peacehaven|
|11 Dec 2021||Santa Dash Brighton||Brighton Seafront, Brighton|
|11 Dec 2021||Chichester Harbour Run Wittering Beach||Wittering Beach, West Wittering|
|13 Feb 2022||Running GP Goodwood 5K, 10K, Half 20 Mile & Marathon February||Goodwood Motor Circuit, Chichester|
|26 Feb 2022||Chichester Harbour Run Chidham||Chidham, Emsworth|
|06 Mar 2022||Steyning Stinger Marathon & Half Marathon||Steyning Grammar School, Steyning|
|06 Mar 2022||Eastbourne Half Marathon||Princes Park, Eastbourne|
|19 Mar 2022||Endurancelife Sussex||Birling Gap, Eastbourne|
|20 Mar 2022||Hastings Half Marathon & Mini Run||St. Leonards on Sea, Hastings|
|26 Mar 2022||Fortitude Ultra Spring||Pippingford Park, Uckfield|
|27 Mar 2022||Martello Half Marathon||The Salts Recreation Ground, Seaford|
|22 May 2022||Bognor Prom 10K||West Park, Bognor Regis|
|22 May 2022||Horsham 10K||Horsham Rugby Club, Horsham|
|23 May 2022||RISE Heroes Run||The Promenade, Hove|
|03 Sep 2022||South Coast Challenge||Seafront, Eastbourne|
About the area
The scene is extremely varied with big clubs and big races - both London and Brighton marathons have a huge impact; to small groups and modest events that offer a friendly local dimension.
Firstly we look at the races. Brighton is a real race hotspot - Tim Hutchings launched Brighton marathon in 2010, now it is an annual sell-out with 10,000 entrants. Brighton half marathon is one of many popular 13.1 mile events - others are Eastbourne and Hastings - scheduled ahead of the big April marathon dates while the Worthing 20 is an important prep run.
Not that racing in Sussex is all about long distances; parkrun - the free weekly 5k event - has a big following in Brighton, Eastbourne and Crawley with its low-key approach. The Rye Summer Classic - three Friday evening 10ks, and the recently-introduced Pebbledash runs - two laps of a fast out-and-back route from Hove Prom to Hove Lagoon - add depth to the programme.
As does the club-based competitions like the prestigious Sussex Grand Prix and the West Sussex Fun Run League. The Fun League has 17 races held at regular intervals throughout the year, starting at different locations in the county from the Lewes Leisure Centre in the east to the village of Lavant, near Chichester in the west.
Scenic Sussex has dozens of other events staged throughout the year - which you can check out in our Race Listings.
There's a lot happening at the grassroots level too. Run England is currently looking to expand its network of groups in both East and West Sussex and this is a great way for people who want to improve their fitness and have a bit of fun to get involved in running.
There's a great mix: cross-country - East Sussex Sunday League offers open downland to very muddy woodland courses, all abilities welcome; the classic South Downs relay - a 100mile team relay from Beachy Head to Winchester; a flourishing hash house culture - refined drinkers with a running problem; and a good women's scene - races like the 8K Undercliff Run for Women and clubs like Brighton & Hove Womens RC. This colourful jigsaw all comes together to create a multi-dimensional running scene where there's a place for everyone.
Running clubs in Sussex
- Amphibians 2 Triathlon Club
- Arena 80 AC
- Bexhill RC
- Brighton & Hove City AC
- Brighton & Hove Womens RC
- Burgess Hill Runners
- Chichester Hash House Harriers
- Chichester Runners & AC
- Crawley AC
- Crowborough Runners
- Eastbourne Rovers AC
- East Grinstead & District AC
- East Grinstead Triathlon Club
- Fittleworth Flyers
- Goring Road Runners
- Hailsham Harriers
- Hastings AC
- Hastings Runners
- Haywards Heath Harriers
- Heathfield Road Runners
- Henfield Hash House Harriers
- Henfield Joggers
- Horsham Amphibians Triathlon Club
- Horsham Blue Star Harriers
- Horsham Joggers
- Lancing Eagles RC
- Lewes AC
- Mel's Milers Jogging Club
- Midhurst Milers
- Phoenix AC
- Portslade HedgeHoppers
- Rotary Road Runners
- Rye Runners
- Saints and Sinners Crawley
- Seaford Striders
- Shoreham Coasters
- Steyning AC
- Tone Zone Runners
- Tuff Fitty Tri-Club
- Uckfield Runners(previously Utopia Runners)
- Wadhurst Runners
- Worthing & District Harriers
- Worthing Striders
Club Focus: Wadhurst Runners
Wadhurst Runners may be a small club but they've earned the right to mix it with the big boys, we caught up with the club recently for a quick chat about what makes the club special,
When did it all begin?
In 1999 when some local enthusiasts decided that the East Sussex town of Wadhurst could do with a friendly running club to call its own.
Who were the originals?
We've still got five members who joined up in '99 - Sarah Wrenn, Roger Smith, Robin Heale, Kevin Parkinson and Albert Kemp.
The core of a lean, mean running machine?
That's maybe gilding the lily, Albert was a new runner and Sarah hadn't actually run before.
Very! But it's all so different today! Well, we've added a few members - over 50 on the books now. Still relatively small but we punch above our weight.
Well in the Sussex Grand Prix 2013 - it's the Diamond League of the south coast - we finished runners-up in both the men's and women's contests.
But the Grand Prix includes titans like Seaford Striders & Haywards Heath Harriers!
Respect to the Waddies!
We've certainly created a great club spirit, despite limited membership and commuters who struggle to attend midweek sessions.
So how do members maintain competitive fitness?
We're lucky that there are lots of great woodland and parkland routes around the town for longer runs. Although new member Matt Seabrook who works away from home and struggles to maintain a regular regime compensates with hard-core 'skipping'. He's encouraged a few others to take skipping up as their cross-training of choice.
Races organised by Wadhurst Runners?
The Bewl 15 which now attracts over 800 entries starts the second-half of the Sussex Grand Prix and is regularly acknowledged as the best 15 mile race in the country. Very scenic and well organised.
We've also heard reports of a new race - the fiendish Little Pell Hell Mud Run?
We staged it for the first time last November. Runners loved a tough course - serious obstacles, crawling under nets, wading through a pond and using ropes to handle steep sections into and out of muddy big dips.
The club on tour?
It's Paris for the marathon in 2013 after an eventful recent trip to Chester for their 26.2 mile event. Waddie bands have also turned up in Norway for the Tromso Midnight Sun marathon, and for the Himilayan 100 mile stage race. Amsterdam and Bruges are other recent ports of call.
Other international aspects of the club?
Committed club man Reg Magar is Nepalese. Reg is also noted for a cavalier approach to race directions and tends to follow a route of his own; a recent winner of the 'Heck are we' cup.
Tell us about other award winners?
Need to mention Neil Walbridge, a very talented triathlete who picked up the 'Busfare Home Cup' after finishing behind 65+ chairman Albert Kemp in the Worthing 20. Neil claimed that cycling the 50 miles from Wadhurst pre-race and arriving just a few minutes before the start had meant a poor showing in the 20 miler. Club officials thought that was a feeble excuse!
Tell us about the ladies?
Well Sarah Wrenn, remember our non-running original member, completed her first half marathon in 2001 and the big one in Paris two years later - she's still going strong. Newish girl Hannah Swaffer is also making a big impact; she joined us as a beginner but has made great progress and finished her first marathon - London 2012.
Want to know more? Visit their website.
Running Services in Sussex
Runners in Sussex are well served by a strong network of professionals catering for runners who are suffering from injury, have biomechanical problems or simply want to maintain maximum fitness. These can include physiotherapy, sports massage, podiatry, nutrition and personal training.
Horsham Physiotherapy is an example of a place runners can go to keep them on top form.
|Clinic 1||Holbrook Surgery, Bartholomew Way, Horsham, West Sussex, RH12 5JL|
|Clinic 2||The Village Surgery, 71 Station Road, Southwater, West Sussex, RH13 9HQ|
|The Horsham Physiotherapy Approach||At Horsham Physiotherapy & Sports Injury Clinic we aim to use the latest evidence to provide our patients with the best available treatment. All our physiotherapists have over 10 years experience and we work in partnership with our patients to tailor treatment to their specific needs and minimise the impact of their injury on their activities. The emphasis is on restoring normal movement and function as quickly as possible, as well as preventing recurrence. Where a break from training cannot be avoided, we endeavour to maintain fitness levels by recommending alternative exercises. We are always happy to talk to patients on the phone before they make an appointment if they are unsure whether or not physiotherapy will help them.|
Other services in Sussex
Physiotherapists in West Sussex
- Physio Plus+, Haywards Heath
- Head2Toe Physio, Crawley, Leatherhead
- ProRehab, Crawley
- Sprint Injury Clinic, Near Worthing
- Worthing Physiotherapy and Sports Injury Clinic
- Return2Fitness Clinics, many throughout the area
- Horsham Physiotherapy & Sports Injury Clinic
- Healthworks Clinic, Bognor Regis and Chichester
- Burgess Hill Physiotherapy
- Tony Wilson Physiotherapy Chichester
- Richard Massimo Physiotherapy, Crawley
- Bodytorque Physiotherapy, Crawley
- Tavistock Clinic, Crawley
- The Heeler Centre, Hassocks
- Haywards Heath Physiotherapy
- Cuckfield Physiotherapy and Sports Injury Clinic
- Cranfold Physical Therapy, Horsham
- Physioactive East Preston
- Agility Healthcare Clinics, Worthing
Physiotherapists in East Sussex
- 4front Physiotherapy
- Nuffield proactive Health, Brighton
- Highmead Physiotherapy
- Eastbourne Physiotherapy
- Eaton's Physiotherapy and Sports Injury Clinic, Hove
- Kevin Hall Physiotherapy, Hove and Brighton
- Willbury Physiotherapy
- Newick Physiotherapy Clinic
- Body Align Clinic, Lewes
- Alpha Physiotherapy, Lewes
- Serenity Massage
Podiatrists in East Sussex
Podiatrists in West Sussex
Coaching Services in East Sussex
If you offer a serivce to runners in Kent and would like to be included on this page, please contact us.
Running groups in Sussex
The Run England project is about getting people to try jogging for the first time or to build on earlier experiences and run more regularly with friends or family. There's no competitive element, though some might want to try a parkrun or local 10k later.
There are many different models of Run England groups and no hard and fast rules around their structure - they come in all shapes and sizes with one common theme - to enjoy running! In Sussex a number of clubs have introduced beginner sections, recognising that some people are put off by a competitive environment (though this is rarely the case).
Run England groups can be based at the workplace. One local council in West Sussex has introduced two beginner groups for employees and the initiative is backed by the company's Wellbeing team who see the advantages of a healthy workforce.
Other groups meet at local leisure centres which tend to provide changing facilities and post-effort coffee - both important in their own way! For example, leader Matt works at a Freedom Leisure Centre in Hailsham. He organises a group from the centre with members who now enter local races. Matt has set up his own Facebook page to encourage runners to share tips, information, plus words of encouragement.
Another group in Cooksbridge meet at the local primary school where parents run after dropping their children off. The leader is a mum herself and wants to get other parents to enjoy running as much as she does.
Marion Hemsworth is the running activator for Sussex and also organises two groups for beginners with a friend in Haywards Heath. She is keen for more people to train as leaders and set up their own groups. She told us: "There are many parts of Sussex where groups could be set up. Local clubs are great for those who want to compete or have been running for years but Run England is about getting people started with no pressure on time or distance, just enjoyment and feeling strong and healthy."
Contact Marion for more information on how you can train to become a leader via the County discount scheme.
Go to the Run England website for more information.
- Bexhill Runners
- Brighton and Hove Running Group
- Brighton & Hove Womens RC
- Burgess Hill Runners
- Crowborough Runners
- Eastbourne Rovers Road Runners
- Females In Training RC
- Fittleworth Flyers
- Habakkuk Harriers
- Horsham Joggers 'Learn to Run'
- icanrun2, Heathfield
- J & M Running, Haywards Heath
- Lewes AC Beginners Group
- Longevity Runners, Haywards Heath
- Run Chichester
- SRC Brighton
- Sovereign Centre group, Eastbourne
- Tone Zone Runners, Bognor
- Worthing Striders
Focus On: Run Chichester
The Run Chichester group could be described as part of the Olympic legacy as it was while watching last year's sports jamboree that local man Rob Wiggins was inspired to start a beginners group in his home town. Rob had been a member of Chichester Runners for 16 years and enjoyed both running and coaching, now he felt it was time to put something back.
The new Run England group was formed in association with the club - they provided website information, access to other potential coaches and a progress route for group graduates. In return they felt that they might recruit some new members. The action started on Tuesday 6 November at the Westgate Centre when a full complement of 16 beginners started the course that promised to take those with no running background from zero to 30 minutes continuous running in just 8 weeks.
Rob Wiggins quickly had to come to terms with the fact that his group, although all beginners, were at different stages of fitness and likely to process at varying rates. He takes up the story: "The group who turned up on the first night was diverse; mostly women but all ages and varied backgrounds. The plan was to base our sessions at the playing fields adjacent to the centre and that meant we could let members develop at their own individual pace.
"We started with the standard run-walk-run programme that gently progressed so that member ran for longer with less walking each week. All goals were measured in time not distance as younger, fitter members could cover greater distances in the same time-frame and it was vital that all beginners had a goal that was realistic.
"Confidence is the key factor. Lots of the new recruits were very uncertain about their own capability, and myself and the other coaches from Chichester Runners who had completed the Leadership in Running Fitness course found that much of early work was in creating self-belief.
"All of the group had committed to doing three runs per week, Tuesdays and Thursdays at the Westgate Centre and another session on their own. I kept in touch by email to encourage everyone and would chat at the meet evenings to make sure everyone had 'done their homework'!
"For our 'graduation' long run we headed to West Wittering beach; a landmark occasion as all members ran for 35 minutes non-stop. When they had started out on their journey some had struggled to run for just one minute.
"At the end of the 8 week programme, some of the group decided to join Chichester Runners, others kept things ticking over before returning to the second programme that started in February. The returners were a great influence on the new intake - keen to help them settle and enjoy the experience."
Rob Wiggins concluded: "One incident sticks in my mind. We had a woman who joined because she wanted to go out running with her children, juniors at Chichester Runners. Soon after she completed the 8 week programme, she turned up on a Tuesday night with a big grin reporting that she had been out with her 14 year old daughter and it was the teenager who had wanted to stop for a rest. That made me smile too."
Find out more about the Run Chichester website.
Leisure facilities in Sussex
Runners need a place to go to improve their running and have the opportunity to cross-train. There are numerous leisure centres in Sussex, of which Worthing Leisure Centre is one. It has a range of facilities for runners and is profiled in our fact box.
|Address||Shaftesbury Ave, Worthing, BN12 4ET|
|Opening Hours||9am-11pm, Monday-Sunday|
|Facilities Available||Astroturf, Fitness Suite, Grass Football & Rugby Pitches, Indoor Climbing Wall, Sauna, Spa Pool, Steam Room, Sports Hall, Studio, Track & Field, Weights Room.|
|Activities||Athletics, Badminton, Basketball, Bowls, Climbing, Football, Rugby, Squash, Table Tennis, Trampolining, Volleyball.|
|Services||Coffee Shop, Sports Bar, Children's Play Centre, Function Room, Mirage Beauty Treatments, Sports Massage and Osteopath.|
|Classes||Aerobics, Body Attack, Body Balance, Body Combat, Body Conditioning, Circuit Training, Body Pump, Boxercise, Core Stability, Legs, Bums and Tums, Pilates, Popmo, Salsa Aerobics, Stretch and Tone, Spinning, Weigh4ward, Yoga, 50-plus classes and Phoenix club classes.|
|Club based at the facility||Worthing and District Harriers, Worthing Leisure Centre Running Club.|
Worthing Leisure Centre hosts a variety of local and regional competitions: Athletics, Basketball, Dance, Judo, Karate, Wrestling and other sports.
Other leisure facilities In East Sussex
- William Parker Sports College, Hastings
- Bannatynes Health Club, Hastings
- Freedom Leisure Falaise, Hastings
- Zeus Gym, St Leonards-on-sea
- Freedom Leisure Helenswood, St Leonards-on-sea
- Freedom Leisure Hillcrest, Hastings
- Herringthorpe Stadium, Rotherham
- Battle Area Sports Centre, Battle
- Crowhurst Park, Battle
- Freedom Leisure Bexhill, Bexhill-on-sea
- Physiques Gym, Bexhill-on-sea
- Poolside Leisure Club, Bexhill-on-sea
- Reed Health and Fitness, Rye
- Freedom Leisure Rye, Rye
- Goldsmiths Recreation Ground Track, Crowborough
- Freedom Leisure Crowborough, Crowborough
- Isenhurst Health Club, Cross-in-Hand, Crowborough and Uckfield
- The Gym, Forest Row
- Uplands Community College Sports Centre, Wadhurst
- Freedom Leisure Hailsham
- Freedom Leisure Heathfield
- Freedom Leisure Uckfield
- Eastbourne Sports Park
- Bannatynes Health Club, Eastbourne
- Cavendish Sports Centre, Eastbourne
- City Gym Express, Eastbourne
- David Lloyd Club, Eastbourne
- Fitness First Health Club, Eastbourne
- Hampden Park Sports Centre, Eastbourne
- Shinewater Sports and Community Centre, Eastbourne
- Soverign Centre, Eastbourne
- University of Brighton Sports Centre, Eastbourne
- Downs Leisure Centre, Seaford
- Falmer Sports Complex, Brighton
- Seahaven Swim and Fitness Centre, Newhaven
- Southdown Sports Club, Lewes
- Lewes Leisure Centre
- Peavehaven Leisure Centre, Peacehaven
Brighton and Hove
- Alive Fitness Centre, Brighton
- Cheetahs Gym, Hove
- Coral Health and Fitness, Hove
- David Lloyd, Brighton
- Deans Leisure Centre, Brighton
- Fit for all Ltd, Hove
- Fitness First, Brighton
- King Alfred Leisure Centre, Hove
- Livingwell Health Club, Brighton
- Moulsecoomb Community Leisure Centre, Brighton
- Portslade Sports Centre, Brighton
- Riptide, Brighton
- Stanley Deason Leisure Centre, Brighton
- The Gym, Brighton
- Withdean Sports Complex, Brighton
- LA Fitness, Brighton
- LA Fitness, Hove
Other leisure facilities In West Sussex
- Aquarena Swimming Complex, Worthing
- David Lloyd Club, Worthing
- Davison Leisure Centre, Worthing
- Ocean Health and Fitness, Worthing
- Worthing Leisure Centre
- Arena Sports Centre, Bognor Regis
- Arun Leisure Centre, Bognor Regis
- Esporta Health and Fitness, Littlehampton
- Fitness First, Bognor Regis
- Littlehampton Swimming and Sports Centre
- Livingwell Health Club, Arundel
- Middleton Sports Club, Bognor Regis
- Six Villages Sports Centre, Chichester
- Bourne Community Leisure Centre, Emsworth
- Chichester College Sports Centre, Chichester
- Forest Mere Health Resort, Liphook
- Grange Centre, Midhurst
- Nuffield Health Fitness and Wellbeing, Chichester
- Westgate Leisure Centre, Chichester
- Billingshurst Leisure Centre, Billingshurst
- Bluecoats Sports and Health Fitness Club, Horsham
- Broadbridge Heath Leisure Centre, Horsham
- Chanctonbury Sports and Leisure Centre, Pulborough
- Henfield Leisure Centre, Henfield
- Pavilions in the Park, Horsham
- Southwater Leisure Centre, Horsham
- Steyning Leisure Centre, Steyning
- The Holbrook Club, Horsham
- Healthy Balanced Generation Ifield, Oriel and Crawley
- Inspire Fitness Club, Crawley
- K2 Leisure Centre
- Virgin Active, Crawley
- East Grinstead Sports Club, East Grinstead
- Freedom Leisure, Hassocks
- Heights Health and Fitness Club, Burgess Hill
- LA Fitness, Crawley
- Nu Yuu Fitness, East Grinstead
- Nuffield Health and Fitness, Crawley
- Olympos, Burgess Hill
- Wickwoods Spa and Health Club, Hassocks
- Olympos Haywards Heath
Sussex Retailer Network
Sussex is well served by an excellent network of specialist running retailers. There is a real concentration around Brighton with Runners Need and Sweatshop both operating active branches in the south coast city. Those stores plus Jog Shop on George St and SheActive on North St will have benefitted from the dramatic success of both Brighton half and full marathons and in turn have been able to support a great selection of clothing and equipment on their premises.
SheActive serves a female clientele and while stocking lots of major brands also keeps the Stella McCartney range and Zoca, labels created with women in mind and offering style, comfort and performance. Great too for sports bras and all the little things women might need - the 'Shewee' looks as if it might be a handy extra in your bum bag!
In nearby Hove, you'll find the succinctly named Run Hove; and just across the county border its partner store Run West Worthing. The rest of East Sussex is less well-served; Herbert Sports in suburban East Grinstead is a popular destination, however what is lacking in quantity is more than compensated by quality in the shape of Mike de Frateschi at Up&Running in Horsham.
A couple of years back we profiled Mike and his store and reported: Mike is a retailer who means business; he converted his long-term running hobby into a successful business that has thrived since it opened in 2003. Mike reckons that the store's hard-won success is down to two main factors:
"Factor 1 - there was a real opportunity in this part of West Sussex for a specialist running shop with a contemporary feel. Before we opened runners had to make use of one of the general sports stores in the town or visit one of the traditional shops elsewhere in the county - neither was ideal. So there was the proverbial gap in the market.
"Factor 2 - my experience of running locally with Horsham Joggers for over 20 years was key. I knew what runners in the area were looking for, and not just the elite few that claim all the prizes at the local events but the recreational runner who maybe enter a couple of races a year or are just happy to head out for 4 or 5 miles twice a week.
"Working under the 'Up & Running' umbrella was significant too. Although I had worked in advertising previously and felt that I had a good commercial awareness it was reassuring to know that I would have the support of a team that were successfully operating over 20 stores around the country. That initial backing in terms of creating a business plan, arranging the layout of the premises, advice and purchasing of stock, staff training and marketing meant that I didn't have to make too many mistakes in the early stages."
We caught up again with Mike recently and he was in buoyant mood: "The economy may have been flat over the last few years but the running scene continues to go from strength to strength. One area that has seen considerable growth recently is off-road running. Off road used to be an acquired taste but with the South Downs and the Surrey Hills so close at hand, more and more runners are hitting the trails. That's reflected in the range of trail shoes we have in stock - more than 20 individual models. Salomon is always popular and the Brooks Cascadia and Adrenaline GTX have a big following."To find a specialist running retailer in Sussex visit our retailers page.