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Applications open for 2020 London Marathon Charity of the Year

Applications open for 2020 London Marathon Charity of the Year

Virgin Money is inviting applications from charities with sports projects to be the official charity of the 2020 Virgin Money London Marathon. The selected charity will also be Virgin Money’s corporate charity for 2019/20.

The company is specifically inviting applications from charities which use sport “to make a difference”.

2020 will be the 40th London Marathon race and the 10th year of Virgin Money’s sponsorship.

The theme of using sport to make a difference is appropriate because that was one of the original objectives of Chris Brasher and John Disley, the founders of the race. Virgin Money and London Marathon Events are seeking to honour this founding aim by selecting an appropriate charity.

SEE ALSO: Record 386,050 enter Virgin Money London Marathon 2018

They are looking for a charity that has launched, or is looking to launch, a project or programme that encourages, supports and develops people’s engagement in sport, or which uses sport to make a difference in the world. They also want it to be a project or programme in which “being the Virgin Money London Marathon Charity of the Year will make all the difference”.

The power of sport

Hugh Brasher, Event Director for London Marathon Events, welcomed Virgin Money’s choice for the 40th London Marathon.

He said: “Our co-founders, my father Chris Brasher and John Disley, were huge advocates of the power of sport in transforming lives for the better. They passionately believed that sport teaches everyone so much about important life values such as competition, integrity, hard work and teamwork.”

He noted the work and impact of the 2017 charity partner of the London Marathon, the Royal Foundation’s Heads Together campaign.

He said: “In recent years, it has been shown that sport – and particularly running – has powerful benefits to mental health and well-being. In 2017, the Royal Foundation’s Heads Together campaign, led by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry, helped to change the national conversation about mental health. We believe that choosing a sport-related project as the beneficiary of the 40th London Marathon is a great tribute to both our history and what our event is all about.”


£61.5m total for 2017

The London Marathon has raised more than £890m for charity since it was first held in 1981. This year’s event raised £61.5m, breaking the world record for a single day annual fundraising event for the eleventh successive year.


Howard Lake is a digital fundraising entrepreneur. Publisher of UK Fundraising, the world's first web resource for professional fundraisers, since 1994. Trainer and consultant in digital fundraising. Founder of Fundraising Camp and co-founder of Research massive growth in giving.

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