ATHLETES can now sign up to take part in the first Bolton Marathon for 32 years.

Organisers announced last month that the event would be resurrected and will be held on Sunday, May 17, next year.

It has now also been announced that Bolton Hospice will be the event’s preferred charity, with Race director Richard Smith aiming to get a minimum of 100 runners to raise money for the organisation.

“We are delighted to be linking up with Bolton Hospice," he said.

“It does amazing and invaluable work and has provided support to so many people over the past two and a half decades.

“We want to try to raise as large an amount for them as possible, so please enter as soon as you can, we are expecting demand to be high.”

The Bolton News:

Kathryn Willett, corporate and community fundraiser at Bolton Hospice, said she was thrilled that the charity had been chosen.

She said: “We are over the moon to have been chosen – if as many people as possible can fund raise for us at this amazing event it will make a huge difference.”

Organisers say there has been massive interest in the race since news of its return was announced.

It will take a route reminiscent of many of the marathons previous iterations, including an infamous two-mile stretch of Plodder Lane which will challenge runners with a tough climb.

The one-lap circuit takes in much of the borough, starting and finishing in Queens Park.

It runs in a clockwise loop around Bolton, including communities such as Smithills, Sharples, Bromley Cross, Harwood, Darcy Lever, Little Lever and Farnworth.

Mr Smith added: “It will certainly be a true test of running ability. If you only complete one marathon in your life and it’s the Bolton Marathon you can give yourself a huge pat on the back.”

The entry fee for the marathon is £55 and there is a limit of 4,000 runners. There will also be a 10km race and a family fun run, which is £25 per runner entry fee, with a limit of 1,500 participants.

You can get involved as a volunteer or sponsor at