Over a thousand runners completed this year's race in fine but increasingly warm conditions. In the process, they raised over £65,000 both for their own charities – 54 of them – and for the THM’s headline charities, Headway and Ellenor.
Congratulations to Daniel Bradley of Tonbridge AC who won the men's race ahead of last year's winner Julian Rendall and Daniel Watt. Congratulations also to Lucy Reid, also from Tonbridge AC who won the ladies' race ahead of Nicole Taylor and last year's winner, Maria Heslop. Tonbridge AC also swept the board in the team events winning the men's event for the second time and the ladies' event for the first time, knocking 4 time winners Paddock Wood back into second place.
Once again, we were pleased to have Sussex Sport Photography as our official photographers and the official gallery of photos from the event is now open.
S.E. Medical provided outstanding first aid cover for the event with a number of mobile, highly qualified first aiders situated at key points around the course and two ambulances crews, one in Leigh and one at the finish line.
When a 44 year old runner suffered a cardiac arrest near the end of the race in Lower Haysden, nearby race marshals and passing runners provided immediate assistance and CPR. A S.E Medical motorcycle paramedic quickly arrived at the scene to attend the casualty. The ambulance service and KSS Air Ambulance both attended very quickly and the casualty was airlifted to Kings College Hospital. He has subsequently made a full recovery and, after a few days in hospital, was back home with his wife and children.
May I take this opportunity to thank all those who responded to our Facebook posting or emailed me. My team and I were so grateful for your support after what had been a very difficult 24 hours. We apologise to those runners who were diverted when the road was closed. However, we are sure that you understand that this was necessary to ensure the welfare of the casualty and the efficient operation of the emergency services.
This is just one email of many that I received after the race:
I just wanted to say how much enjoyed the race. it is my 5th Tonbridge Half Marathon . . . but wasn’t going to be able to run it as I got a hip injury last week. However, this morning I thought, I have done them all so am doing this one too! Took painkillers and thought I would take it a bit easier. I just wanted to say how much I enjoyed it, the organisation was flawless, the t-shirt a nice touch and the crowd support at Leigh village was just amazing, everybody was out for us. The church bells and the band were great. I also wanted to mention the volunteers out there - a big thank you to them, they are so friendly. It was great the way the organisation dealt with the emergency too. Well done to everybody who organised it. I shall be back next year, hopefully with no injury! 5 stars to this race from me. Grace Manzotti
Finally I would like to pay tribute to the immense professionalism and calmness under extreme pressure shown by members of the Tonbridge Half Marathon management team and marshal volunteers, by the Raynet volunteers who provided radio communications for the whole event, by S.E.Medical who first class first aid and paramedic cover for the event and by the three runners who stopped to help the casualty. I cannot speak too highly of these guys, without whose combined efforts a successful outcome would not have been possible.
Andy Blundell MBE