Unilever runners _DSC3157 Picture by Paul Francis Cooper

Published June 12th, 2018 | News

Flower power comes to Port Sunlight!

Runners invited to dress up for road race

The Port Sunlight Road Race returns this coming Sunday (17 June) – and for 2018 it’s all about Flower Power with runners invited to dress up for the occasion.

Up to 2,000 runners will take part in the race festival’s three running events covering the distances of 5K, 10K, and a 1K Fun Run for youngsters aged 12 and under.

The seventh annual running event is organised and delivered by BTR Liverpool, in conjunction with Port Sunlight Village Trust (PSVT). Unilever is supporting the race day for a fifth consecutive year as headline sponsor.

It’s a big year for Port Sunlight, which is celebrating the 130th anniversary of the founding of the village.

To mark the milestone, a team of 130 employees from Unilever Port Sunlight will be pulling on their running shoes to take part in the 5K and 10K races.

Last year’s race was one of the hottest days of the year. So to celebrate the Summer race event, a new race theme of Flower Power will be in full bloom for 2018.

The day’s background soundtrack will also be themed, and runners have been asked to suggest their favourite songs from the Swinging Sixties era which will be played on the day.

Hoylake-based race organisers BTR is the leading independent organisation for creating, managing and delivering headline race events across Liverpool City Region, including Wirral Half Marathon/10K; and Liverpool Santa Dash.

BTR Race Director Alan Rothwell explains: “Those who took part last year will remember not only the scorching weather conditions, but also that Port Sunlight Village was in full bloom. So this time round we’re celebrating the natural beauty of our host location on its 130th anniversary.

“With a nod and a wink to the Flower Power era of the 1960s, we’ve taken the theme through across the race numbers, T-shirts and medals. The groovy green 5K T-shirts and sunshine yellow 10K T-shirts will make finishers’ look cool on a hot Summer’s day. And we’re encouraging runners and spectators to channel their inner Austin Powers and dress up on the day.”

Port Sunlight was founded by William Lever in 1888 for the employees of Lever Brothers Port Sunlight. Today it is considered the finest example of an industrial worker village in the UK. Port Sunlight Village Trust is an independent charity set up in 1999 to care for Port Sunlight; ensure a great quality of life for its residents; and celebrate William Lever’s amazing legacy.

PSVT invests nearly £3million each year in building maintenance and repair, heritage conservation, and lifelong learning programmes for residents, the local community, and domestic and international visitors.

To coincide with the 130th anniversary in 2018, PSVT will launch a new 5 year Strategic Plan and 10 year Conservation Management Plan and, for the first time, the organisation will exhibit a back to back garden at RHS Tatton in July.

PSVT was also recognised at the Liverpool City Region Tourism Awards 2018, when it was named Independent Tourism Business Of The Year and Port Sunlight Museum won Small Visitor Attraction Of The Year.

Rob Young, Chair of Port Sunlight Village Trust’s Board of Trustees, said: “This is a milestone year and a very exciting time for Port Sunlight. We are delighted to be working with BTR and Unilever once again. The race day continues to be an important date in our events calendar – and it’s a perfect way to showcase Port Sunlight to runners and spectators. Good luck everyone.”

Unilever’s sponsorship is part of its Bright Future campaign. One of the company’s goals is to help a billion people around the world improve their health and well-being by 2020.

Unilever is extremely proud of its history and heritage in Port Sunlight, where company founder William Lever built his factory and village in 1888. The company continues to have world class manufacturing, R&D and IT facilities based here, along with a third of its UK workforce. Unilever’s brands include household names Persil, Dove, Tresemme, Radox, Comfort and Surf.

Cameron Jones, Head of Unilever Port Sunlight, commented: “Unilever is immensely proud of its 130-year heritage in Port Sunlight and we are delighted to sponsor the road race for the fifth consecutive year. We have a team of 130 runners from Unilever Port Sunlight to mark the anniversary – and I’ll be pulling on my running shoes to join them in the 5K race. I’d like to wish all the runners all the best for a very enjoyable and successful 2018 road race.”

The 5K race and two-lap 10K route takes runners through Port Sunlight’s tree-lined boulevards. The 5K starts at 10am, followed by the 10K at 11am.

Once the 10K has finished, it’s time for the youngsters to get involved with a 1K Fun Run. Last year, 300 youngsters took part. Registration for the 1K Fun Run is on the day.

The 5K and 10K finishers will each receive a commemorative medal and bespoke T-shirt. Youngsters will also receive a medal.

Four years ago, a small group of runners set themselves a challenge by taking part in both race distances, the number has continued to double each year. This year, 200 runners have registered for the dual race challenge – they will also receive a dual challenge medal.

Website www.btrliverpool.com
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