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Grand Union Canal Spring Half Marathon

10:00am Sun 8th Apr 2018 • by Purple Patch Running
Uxbridge, GB
Run 13.1mi

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What you need to know

Lovely point-to-point race from Cowley Recreation Ground, Uxbridge along the Grand Union Canal to Cassiobury Park, Watford.

A flat, scenic, unusual, multi-terrain course. Traffic-free apart from one minor road crossing.
As this is a point-to-point race, you can choose to leave your car at the finish and use the bus to get to the start - your car will then be waiting for you when you've finished. You can book and pay for your seat on the bus when you register. Great spectator-friendly start at Cowley Rec & finish in Cassiobury Park!

Course Details

The race takes you along the canal towpath from Cowley Recreation Ground, Uxbridge, to Cassiobury Park, Watford. As a multi-terrain route, it will provide you with different challenges along the way. The route follows the canal towpath and you will meet other users, whether on foot or bicycle or angling – please be considerate to other users. We will do all we can to warn other users in advance and to facilitate your run. There is one minor road crossing over a small bridge just after the start – please take care here and cross only when you can see it is safe to do so. Some of the bridges you will be running under are quite low – please take care. The footpath is narrow and rutted in places – please take extra care on these stretches. Don’t get frustrated if you can’t pass someone – remember there will be a wider section coming up when you can make your move! Above all, enjoy the route, the countryside, and all that entails

The route will be marked with mile markers

Raceday Logistics

Start Venue:

The Start is at Cowley Recreation Ground, Cowley, Hillingdon, UB8 2EA. There is NO PARKING at Cowley Rec – see below for race parking, which is at Cowley Business Park

Uxbridge tube station is approximately 1.3 miles from the Recreation ground – a nice warm-up jog, or there are buses that will take you down Cowley High Street from the tube. West Drayton railway station is approx. 1.5 miles away

Finish Venue:

The Finish is at Cassiobury Park, Watford, WD18 7HY. The nearest landmark is the Cha Café, near to the Shepherds Road entrance to the park (pedestrian access only). Watford Metropolitan tube is directly adjacent to the park

Timetable of Events:

  • 8:00am  First bus leaves Cassiobury Park, Watford, to go to the start in Uxbridge.
  • 8:45am  Last bus leaves Cassiobury Park, Watford, to go to the start in Uxbridge.
    • (this is only for those runners who have pre-booked the bus)
  • 8:15am  Registration opens at the start for you to pick up your race pack.
  • 10:00am  Half Marathon starts in Cowley Rec, Uxbridge (in 5 minute waves) (approx).
  • 11:15am  Half Marathon winner finishes in Cassiobury Park, Watford (approx).
  • 12:15am  Prize presentation.

Start time:

In order to avoid congestion on the towpath, we will be starting the race in waves.

  • Wave 1 will start at 10:00am
  • Wave 2 will start at 10:05am
  • Wave 3 will start at 10:10am
  • Wave 4 will start at 10:15am

You will be emailed before race day with your Wave number.

Your Wave will be allocated according to your estimated time to complete the race, with faster runners going off first.

Please note that it is not possible to change waves on the day – your race number will denote which wave you should be in and you will not appear in the results if you start in the wrong wave


Car parking:

If you are leaving your car at the finish in Cassiobury Park: there is limited parking in the car park at the very end of Gade Avenue, right next to the park. Alternative parking can be found at the tube station and there is also limited on-street parking around Cassiobury Park.

If you are leaving your car at the start in Cowley Rec: there is NO parking at Cowley Recreation Ground. Race Car Park is at: GallifordTry, Cowley Business Park, High St, Cowley, UB8 2AL. Many thanks to GallifordTry & Esselte for the use of their premises for the race car park

Coach to start:

The coaches will be leaving from next to the Gade Avenue car park WD18 7LG. You MUST BOOK a seat on the coach separately if you would like a place (costs £8). If you have booked a seat on the coach to the start, you will receive an email in the days prior to the race.

Places on the coach can be booked here:

The coaches will be in place at 08:00am and each will leave as soon as it is full. The last coach will leave no later than 08:45. Please note: there is NO bus back to Cowley after the race!


Apart from the start & finish, there are a number of good vantage points for spectators along the way. It is quite possible to drive to one or more points and still get to the finish in time. Follow the Grand Union Canal between Cowley & Watford on any map and you will find road crossings, etc, where you can catch the runners as they pass through


Are there any age restrictions? 
You must be at least 17 years of age on the day of the event.

What will I be given on the day?
You will receive your race number and your chip. Your race number should be pinned with four safety pins to the FRONT of your running top. Please do not obscure it at any time. If you don’t have safety pins, there will be some at registration. Your chip may be on the back of your number or it may be a tie-on chip – you will be given full instructions when you receive it.


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