Oxford Half Marathon

Oxford’s glorious 13.1 mile route starts on Broad St. and takes in the famous Radcliffe Camera, the Sheldonian Theatre, the Bodleian Library, and many of Oxford University’s world-famous Colleges! Last year was a SELL-OUT and this year entries are selling fast so don't miss out!

Event location of Vitality Oxford Half Marathon
Event Time:10:30 am
Event Date:11 October 2020
Event Distance:13.1 Miles

Running Events

History | Getting Started | Top Events

Running events are some of the most popular types of fitness events out there – and are one of the easiest to get in to, whilst being very tricky to master. Because of this, it is a great place to start when you want to get in to a fitness regime – but there is a lot more to it than simply placing one foot in front of the other!

Runners taking part in a running event

Brief History of Running

Competitive races are thought to have at first started (as with many sports) with the Ancient Greeks, though many other traces link it to the Egyptians, parts of Asia and many other parts of Africa. One of the earliest recorded event is from 1829 BCE at an Irish festival honouring the goddess Tailtiu in a series of sporting events known as the Tailteann Games. A thousand years later in 776 BCE, we have the first record of the Olympics in Greece, and this is likely where many forms of runs and marathons have their origins.

Since then many different type of events have come about – through the Olympic Games are still probably the most famous. Throughout the world events are held all the time from simple small 5k runs to enormous 26 mile sprints like the London Marathon.

How to get started in running events

Luckily it is one of the easiest sports to get in to – you just need to start moving! Starting off with small jogs and sprints is the best way to get started and then you can slowly start to increase distance to build yourself up to bigger and better runs. I’d suggest started off with something like a 5K as this is not too challenging but long enough for you to get a real sense for what is involved in the sport. You can read our article here all about how to prepare for your first 5K which will give you some more insight on how to get your training started.

Once you get started you will quickly see there is a lot more to taking on a run than simply getting out there and jogging. If you are looking to get serious then you may want to start investing in some good gear – a good pair of running trainers is the best place to start. You can also invest in a lot of other running specific clothing too though be warned things can start to get expensive.

Running Races Near Me

There are quite a lot of different runs to choose from depending on what kind of experience you are looking for, we list some of the best running events in the UK, if you know what type of event you want you can click one of the links below to find out more;


Fun Runs  | 5K Runs  | 10K Runs  | Half Marathons  | Marathons


Top Running Events in 2020

We have picked out the best events taking place in 2020. We have lots more listings available, just click on the 'Running Events' tab at the top of this page to find them.

Bournemouth Marathon

Although we have picked this particular event, there are actually 4 different events taking place at the Bournemouth Marathon Festival so you really do have the widest choice available to suit your ability. Not only does it have great options but also stunning scenery, it takes place along the coastline and also the iconic Bournemouth pier. We have been to the Half Marathon event before so check out our review here.

Find out more about the 2020 Bournemouth Marathon


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The Oxford Half Marathon Course


Start in Oxford City Centre and take on a fast and flat route that showcases everything we love about Oxford!

Miles 1 – 4

The race starts on Broad Street overlooked by the impressive Trinity College and the Clarendon Building, the route turns immediately right onto Magdalen Street and continues onto St Giles.  A sharp right takes you onto Parks Road past Oxford University Parks and continues onto South Parks Road.  The route then turns right onto Mansfield Road and weaves left onto Jowett Walk and curves to the left onto St Cross Street, before turning left again onto South Parks Road. Next it’s a right onto Parks Road past the Oxford University Museum of Natural History. The course then takes in almost the full length of Banbury Road through the streets of Summertown, turning at Carlton Road and heading back down Banbury Road. A left onto Marston Ferry Road takes you towards the beautiful village of Old Marston.

Miles 5 – 10

Approaching Old Marston Village, you cross over the River Cherwell. At the halfway point it’s a left onto Elm’s Drive, left again along Marsh Lane and then another left on Elsfield Road. From here you carry on along Oxford Road before passing through the underpass and travelling west along the cycle lane, which runs almost the full length of Marston Ferry Road. At the end of Marston Ferry Road the route takes a left back onto Banbury Road, and then a sharp left onto Belbroughton Road, right onto Charlbury Road and then a right onto Bardwell Road before darting back onto Banbury Road.

Miles 10 – 13.1

Next it’s left onto Norham Road and then right onto Fyfield Road passing Oxford University’s impressive Lady Margaret Hall, and then right again onto Norham Gardens.  The route then takes in a mile lap of the beautiful Oxford University Parks running adjacent to the River Cherwell and emerges onto St Cross Road.  The final mile takes you right onto Jowett Walk and then left onto Mansfield Road and right again onto Holywell Street.  Back in the City Centre you will turn left onto Catte Street and make your way right around Radcliffe Square and the stunning Radcliffe Camera. The route then takes a left onto Brasenose Lane, a right onto Turl Street and the final few metres take you on another left across the finish line on Broad Street, completing the Vitality Oxford Half Marathon!

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Charities & Sponsors

Children with Cancer UK

Email Address: info@childrenwithcancer.org.uk
Phone Number: 020 7404 0808


Email Address: contact@mind.org.uk
Phone Number: 02085 192122