ENTRIES are open for one the district’s biggest running events - which is planning to go ahead as scheduled on July 12.

New organisers at the helm of Hexham Half Marathon & 10K, which was founded by local runner Greg Urwin back in 2015.

Wild Deer Events, owned by competitive athlete and businessman Dan Flint, already organises several events across the district, including the successful Slaley Hall 10K Trail Run, which took place last November.

While he is keen on a fresh start for Hexham’s flagship run, Dan accepts that the coronavirus outbreak could prevent it from going ahead.

“At the moment, we’re planning to go ahead, and entries are open,” he said. “We are very aware of the current circumstances, and we have to take things from week to week. Health and welfare is the main priority at the moment for everyone.

“If this was a May or a June event we would have cancelled it, but because it’s July we have to be ready in case we do get the go ahead.

“We want to keep the date there for now, and hopefully give runners something to aim for.”

Regardless of whether it is 2020 or 2021, Dan is keen to revitalise an event which was hampered by a series of problems last year.

Despite attracting over 700 runners from across the North-East and beyond, there were issues relating to course signage, a shortage of marshals, and a mix-up over the distribution of souvenir t-shirts.

But Wild Deer Events had no involvement back then, and Dan has already moved to make changes.

The name Hexham Running Festival has been dropped in favour of Hexham Half Marathon & 10K, sponsored by Egger UK.

The route is set to start and finish at Tyne Green, with Hexham Auction Mart providing parking spaces. There will be an evening start, with both races beginning from the same location at 6pm.

Dan said he has held positive talks with both the mart and Northumberland County Council, said the route would take in prominent locations in the town centre, such as Hexham Abbey. For more information visit the Hexham Half Marathon page on Facebook.