TCS London Marathon

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Tickets on organiser’s site
Be part of this global event to run a race you will never forget. The undisputed King of the UK race calendar, runners will not go a single mile without feeling the rush from music and cheering supporters spurring them on.
London Marathon
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Sun 23rd Apr 2023
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London, United Kingdom
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(49 Reviews)
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Where and when
Great Cross Ave, Greenwich, London SE10 8QY, UK
Start times
Sun 23rd Apr 2023
London Marathon:
Races summary
Here's what races are available for TCS London Marathon
London Marathon
Route information
Distance: 26.2 miles
Terrain: Closed roads and pavements
Elevation: Mostly flat
The London Marathon course is one of the most iconic routes in running. Winding its way through the heart of the capital, with crowds lining the side of the route at every step, the course has barely changed since the race was first held in 1981.
The course begins starts in leafy Blackheath, heads east through Charlton and Woolwich for three miles, turns west and passes the Cutty Sark in Greenwich after six to seven miles.
It crosses the River Thames at Tower Bridge and then loops around London, right past the Shard. Continuing along past the 12th mile markers, runners will be taken past Canary Wharf and the London Eye.
Runners will finish in a blaze of glory along London's most iconic landmarks, Big Ben and The Houses of Parliament and Buckingham Palace.
Organiser route images
What's included
  • Finisher's Medal
  • T-Shirt
  • Goody Bag
  • Marshalled Course
  • Water Stations
  • Aid Stations
  • Freebies at the ExCel centre
  • Life Long Memories
How to get there
Great Cross Ave, Greenwich, London SE10 8QY, UK
Get full directionsExternalLink
What happens at the finish line
After you have collected your belongings, you should move away from the baggage lorry area as quickly as possible. Please leave the secure area via the designated exit point only.
There is a runner meet and greet area where you will be able to meet your friends and family at one of the meeting points on The Mall and in Horse Guards Roads and Horse Guards Parade. These meeting points will be marked with letters of the alphabet, so you can arrange to meet at your family initial or another pre-arranged letter.
International runners have their own dedicated meet and greet area in The Mall, close to Admiralty Arch.
Event day logistics
*Information is from the 2022 event day guide and is subject to change.
There are three start areas at the Virgin Money London Marathon – Red, Blue, and Green – and the colour of your running number indicates your start area. Each Start Area has eight zones – numbered 1 to 8 - and you will be informed of your Start Zone when you register at Expo.
The zone you have been allocated to is based on your predicted finish time when you entered. Please note: You cannot change your Start Area or move to an earlier Start Zone. However, if you think your predicted finish time is now too fast, you will be allowed to join a later Start Zone.
To make sure the start of your race goes smoothly, you just need to do the following:
  • Go to your correct Start Area
  • Drop off the kitbag you have been provided
  • Join your correct Start Zone
  • Follow the instructions of the marshals
Spectator Info
Getting around
With all roads closed (visit our road closures page for more details), the only way to get around is by public transport. London Underground, London Overground and the Docklands Light Railway (DLR) lay on extra services on Race Day, and this is by far the best way to get around.
Before setting off, you need to prepare – spectating isn’t quite as tough as marathon training but it still needs some thought:
Travel light – you will be standing for hours on end, so keep your belongings to a minimum and try and leave as many valuables as you can at home.
Comfortable clothes (especially shoes) are a must. You should be prepared for a typical April day in London – sun, showers and wind.
It’s busy! If you are a regular commuter, think rush hour. If not, think what it’s like when you attend a concert or festival. You will often have to queue and some stations may be forced to shut temporarily while staff clear the crowds.
Expect to do lots of walking, including stairs and escalators – you should think carefully before bringing young children; pushchairs can also be troublesome.
Places to avoid
If you want to follow your loved ones and try to get a glimpse of them as they pass, it is suggested that you avoid very crowded areas, where it can be difficult to find a viewing spot, hard to move around and tough to get in and out.
Busy areas include Greenwich town centre and the Cutty Sark. While the ship is undoubtedly a beautiful backdrop for the race, the crowds that are attracted here can make spectating uncomfortable and transport in and around Greenwich becomes particularly busy.
Tower Bridge is always extremely busy, as is anywhere from mile 24 to the finish in The Mall. Obviously many of you will eventually end up in this area later on in the day as you head to the runner meet and greet area in Horse Guards Road.
Runner meet and greet area
It can be very busy, so please take note of the following advice. There will be meeting points in Horse Guards Road and Horse Guards Parade with areas marked by letters of the alphabet – meet at your family initial or at another pre-arranged letter.
Please meet your runner at one of these meeting points. DO NOT congregate around the exit from the secure area at the top of Horse Guards Road. This causes massive congestion for exiting runners as well as other health and safety issues for the large numbers of people in this area. Both the Police and our security personnel are under strict instructions not to allow people to congregate here and to move them along.
Heavy mobile phone traffic on all networks means you may find it difficult to get a signal in and around the finish area. Therefore, do not rely on mobile phones but plan where to meet in advance.
Runners are more likely to run slower than their predicted time. After crossing the Finish Line it will take a minimum of 15 minutes and closer to 30-40 minutes to reach the runner meet and greet area. Remember to build these factors into your arrangements when planning to meet your runner.
And finally...
Make sure you have the details of your runner’s race number. It is the easiest way for the organiser's information point to identify them on the database.
How do I enter the London Marathon?
The majority of runners apply for the London Marathon by entering the ballot, with a 4% chance of getting in. If you don't get in through the ballot, you can run for a charity, for which there are about 15,000 places. You can also get a good-for-age place, details of which can be found here:
At what time does the London Marathon start?
The mass start of the London Marathon starts at 10:10 am on race morning
What is the cut-off time for the London Marathon?
The cut-off time for the London Marathon is 7 hours. You can continue running after this time, but you will have to run on the pavement, as roads will reopen, and you will not receive a finisher's medal.
Where can I find results for the London Marathon?
Results for the London Marathon can be found here
49 reviews
SceneryStunning scenery
FriendlyFaceFriendly atmosphere
CrowdsIncredible crowds
Did the race in 2017
One of the six marathon majors, the most over subscribed and popular event on the planet, incredible crowds, unique atmosphere, an opportunity to run this event is an opportunity not to be missed.
Did the race in 2019
Simply AMAZING!!! The organisation was spot on, bag drop was a breeze, lots of toilets, the waves were easy to navigate. Potentially the best day. Ever!
Ed H-M
Did the race in 2019
An amazing atmosphere along the whole route added to an amazing well organised day. Great pre and post race experience also
Did the race in 2019
My first ever marathon was an amazing experience at the VLM 2019. The race was so well organised and the volunteers were so helpful and friendly. The race itself was mostly enjoyable and the ginormous crowds were fantastic. I highly recommend this event for a beginner.
Did the race in 2019
I am in full love with this event which I have run twice, 2017 and 2019. Super well organised, amazing volunteers and has the most cheering crowds in the world! With several endorphin-boost locations - Cutty Sark, Tower Bridge, Canary Warf and Big Ben - it's a MUST race!
Did the race in 2019
London Marathon 2019 - What an amazing weekend. Honestly one of the best experiences (if not the best) of my life. I felt like a child in a sweet shop at the expo on the Saturday and then there was race day - just wow. I finished in 3:15:08 but I actually ran an extra 0.3 miles so would have been even quicker - oops! The race was fantastic, the crowds were unreal. Hearing so many people cheer my name was incredible. I had run my first marathon in Brighton two weeks before and ran London so much more intelligently, finishing strong in the last 4 miles and absolutely in control. It would have been easy to get carried away and go off too fast but I knew all too well the feeling of 'The Wall' and paced my race to a near on straight line, which allowed me to enjoy every second. Turning the last corner, passing the famous 385 yards to go sign and heading onto the most amazing Union Jack emblazoned home straight was such an unbelievable feeling. It really was one of the best days of my life and I was so happy. The London Marathon is organised seamlessly and absolutely lives up to the hype and more so. You have to experience it!
Did the race in 2019
Simply the best marathon ever! The atmosphere is incredible with supporters for the full 26.2 miles, you'll look forward to the 2 tunnels where you can blow your nose and eat a jelly baby with your mouth open. Nice flat course which passes through Cutty Sark, Tower Bridge, Canary Wharf and finally the Embankment, finishing with an epic view of Buckingham Palace. Fantastically well organised, just need a few more porta loos at the race start.
Did the race in 2019
The only negative is the meet up areas at the end. When everything was within horseguards, yes it was busy, but only runner an their supporters were there thus effective. This year we had to fight around charities, tour guides (inc groups), general sightseers, and masses of additional race supporters, utter chaos at a detriment to the tired runners the area is provided for.Public crossings and signage to crossings of the course were also mis represented regarding directional access causing further chaos and many to not see their loved ones around the final mile, this exacerbated by two charities being given sole access to 300m of pavement as a private area yet remaining largely unused.
Did the race in 2019
Marathon jealousy is something many people experience when watching the marathon or volunteering. I most certainly felt that way after I volunteered last year during sixth form for the baggage. I then set myself the goal of one day running the London Marathon. Fast forward a year later, and here I am a finisher. I still cant quite believe it. As for the event its self theres not too much to say. The atmosphere is incredible, tower bridge and the way back along embankment were definitely my favourites. Strangers cheering you on for pretty much the whole way provides a buzz like nothing else. Id gone into the race with the mindset of finishing in under four hours. I soon learnt around mile 15 (when the aches and pains began to set it) that time was irrelevant. Just being able to finish is an incredible achievement and Im so glad I did. I whole heartedly recommend to get involved and sing up. Just go for it, 3 hours or 8 hours it doesnt matter. Being able to finish it is huge and incredible.
Did the race in 2019
Course: the course is good, really flat, but I would prefer a few nicer areas rather than the Isle of Dogs.Orga: this is super well organised, from email come, to the running show, number pick up, getting via public transport to the start and funnelling the finishers. Ive not seen a better organised event. Atmosphere: London is the best - proud to be a Londoner just for this event alone.Is there anything I would change: yes, do they really need to hand out those huge Luzorade bottles? No one can drink that much of this stuff. Loved the seaweed thingis.
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Tickets on organiser’s site

8th Floor, Orion House, 5 Upper St Martins Lane,

London, WC2H 9EA

Reg number 10083277

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