Port Sunlight Road Race returns this weekend

Port Sunlight Road Race returns this weekend – with the highest number of entries since the event has been staged post-pandemic.

Places for the 5K and 10K have sold out at 1,600 entries, including more than 250 runners who have signed up for the dual challenge and will take part in both races.

Last year’s event took place in soaring temperatures. However, the forecast for Sunday’s race (9 June) looks like a lot more favourable weather conditions for running. This is the 11th staging of the event.

The day’s proceedings will be centred around Port Sunlight Village Green in the heart of the picturesque setting, next to Port Sunlight Museum.

The 5K will start at 10am, followed by the 10K at 11am. The 5K route takes runners along the tree-lined boulevards and perfectly manicured gardens of Port Sunlight village. The 10K follows two laps of the 5K route.

The competitive races will be followed by a 1K Fun Run for youngsters aged 12 and under. Almost 80 youngsters are already registered.

The fun run will start at approximately 12.30pm, once the 10K runners have all crossed the finish line. Places are available for the children’s fun run, entry is on the day and is £5 cash.

Volunteers are still welcome to help on the day. Please email erica@btrliverpool.com for more details.

Port Sunlight Road Race is organised and delivered by independent race organiser BTR Liverpool in conjunction with Port Sunlight Village Trust (PSVT).

A group of 115 runners from Unilever Port Sunlight – appropriately named the Sunlight Runners – will pull on their trainers on the day.

The 5K Port Sunlight Road Race record was set by Joseph Boden from Wallasey AC in 2019 with a time of 15 minutes 28 seconds. The female 5K record was set by Helen Sahgal from Liverpool Pembroke & Sefton Harriers in 2018 with 18 minutes 13 seconds.

The 10K record is 30 minutes 19 seconds, set by Dejene Gezimu from Liverpool Harriers in 2016. The female 10K record was set in 2016 by Sophie Whiteside, also from Liverpool Harriers, with a time of 36 minutes 42 seconds.

The day’s most senior runners range in age between 77 and 83-years-old and are running in the 5K, 10K, or dual race.

First staged in 2012, Port Sunlight Road Race is well-established in the region’s race calendar.

Port Sunlight Village Trust (PSVT) is an independent charity and custodian of Port Sunlight, an exemplar worker village created to support the wellbeing and productivity of the Lever Brothers soap works employees and their families.

As custodian, PSVT works with important stakeholders to protect the heritage, ensure a great quality of life for people, and promote understanding of Port Sunlight’s global value and relevance.

Jean Milton, Director of Heritage at Port Sunlight Village Trust, said, “It is great news that Port Sunlight Road Race has once again sold out. It’s a fantastic and unique way to attract new and returning visitors to our stunning village. Seeing the village thrive with runners and supporters is a wonderful sight each year. Thank you to Unilever Port Sunlight for their continued support as headline sponsor. Good luck to everyone taking part.”

Port Sunlight is Unilever’s historic UK home, created by one of the company founders William Lever to provide his Sunlight Soap factory workers with decent, affordable houses.

Cameron Jones, Head of Unilever Port Sunlight, added, “Unilever Port Sunlight is thrilled to be part of the event for the ninth consecutive year. We are very much committed to promoting health and wellbeing, so Port Sunlight Road Race is a great fit as we work in partnership with Port Sunlight Village Trust and BTR Liverpool to stage the event. Good luck to the Sunlight Runners, have a great race.”

Volunteer teams on the day include Birkenhead Park Running Club, Claire House Children’s Hospice, Marsh Lane Harriers, and members of the Merseyside running community.

BTR Liverpool is the leading independent organisation for creating, managing, and delivering headline race events across Liverpool City Region.

The BTR race portfolio also includes the 52-mile BTR Tour Of Merseyside starting on 30 June with races in Thurstaston and New Brighton, as well as the BTR Wirral 10K on Sunday, 13 October.

Image credit: Paul Francis Cooper

Why not follow birkenhead.news on Facebook, Twitter, and Threads? You can also send story ideas or letters to the editor to news@birkenhead.news