Great North Run - I give up!

I've got a place to run the GNR in October as part of my build up to New York in November. But I give up! The cost of accomodation and the train up from London is extortionate. A real shame, because last year's race was a PB. So I'm off to run Windsor instead.

Anyway, does anyone know if it's possible to hold an entry over till next year. I presume that my place is non-transferable. Thanks in advance!


  • Know what you mean. We're doing the same - GNR then NYM but have given up on the accomodation, instead we're sleeping in the car (tiny Golf). I think's NY is cheaper than Newcastle at present! Good luck for NYM
  • Try the youth hostels. We did last year and they were fine. Oh and cheap!!
  • My wife to be and I are doing NYC as well !
  • Good stuff! Is it your first NYC? It is mine. Have read that the route's a lot more hilly than London, which should make those last few miles fun (!)...
  • I did GNR last year, travel up from London by train and stayed in a motel on my own for 1 night, cost £150.
    Going to Dublin for the marathon in Oct (with the wife), flying from Stanstead, staying in a 4* city center hotel B&B for 2 nights, cost £185, dont add up does it. Hence opted out of GNR in favour of Windsor this year.

  • WombleWomble ✭✭✭
    I'm just amazed anyone does the GNR more than once. I did GNR 2000, I liked the route - the miles seemed to slip along quite nicely even though I was slow. But the organisation at start and finish - APPALLING. The London Marathon is not only the best marathon for the race action but the organisation cannot be faulted, the GNR has a lot to learn.
    Or perhaps it's all ok now and I just picked a bad year?
  • I think you're right about the lack of organisation. Last year anyway. The FLM makes it all look so easy - or maybe we're just a bit spoiled!?
  • You should just feel sorry for all those who have to travel the other way round to get to the London marathon. Accommodation would be a lot more expensive, and there is much less available for the bigger marathon race.
  • Good point!
  • WombleWomble ✭✭✭
    Weeble, that'll be why there's such a demand for places then :-)
  • Nirvana Europe are the official accommodation agent for the GNR. In conjunction with Runners World we have chartered a cruise ship for the weekend, partly to counter the attitude of hotels. It`s not cheap, but it is a dinner bed & breakfast rate for 2 nights, includes transfer to & from the race, a Runners World clinic plus a celebrity dinner on Sunday night. Get in touch if you are interested.
  • Fair comment weeble..........
  • I don't suppose Nirvana Europe know anything about the Calvia Mallorca marathon and half do they?
  • Tea and toast man shame on you, honestly i did gnr last year - brilliant no complaints at all, if you want accomodation wait until about 1-2 weeks before then ring round placeslike travel inns/lodges etc, people pull out due to injuries , i booked last year week before. come on guys, everyone enjoys something different about every race so chill. One thing , you can't beat the social element in Newcastle - Why ay Man... p.s I am not a geordie but love them!!!!

  • Hi Jojo,

    Don't get me wrong - I loved last year's GNR!!! The course and the people were great. (I still think the organisation was a bit, y'know...) It's just sad that everything seems so expensive this year. Travel + accomodation could end up as much as my flight to the NY Marathon! Crazy...

    Anyhow, I'll give your suggestion of a last minute ring round a go. Good idea!

    Right, it's time this grumpy old bugger went to bed.

    Cheers, Lee.
  • Good to read your comments jojo. I've done several GNRs and I have to travel up from the deep South(!) but I've loved them all. Atmosphere, etc. is all brilliant and well worth the long trip. I always thought the organisation was excellent but I don't do marathons so can't compare against them.
  • P.S. I believe Mike Gratton's sports travel company, LPG, do package deals to the GNR. I used them when they were able to get accommodation at Durham Uni and that was nice and cheap but don't think they use it anymore because of race date change. Think they still do various packages though.
  • I've done the GNR for several years now and I think its great. The only pain is trying to get onto the metro at the end, talk about queues!!!
  • You don't have to stay in Newcastle itself anyway, if you're travelling by car there are stacks of places which are within 30mins of the start, then just head for a metro station, park your car and use the metro to get to the start and back from the finish.
    I've got it easy as we stay with friends near Durham.
  • Melanie - I've always used the buses instead of the metro. As long as you want to get back into the centre of Newcastle they are very good. I think some of them may go elsewhere but I need the city centre so I'm not sure. They do a constant shuttle service so as fast as they fill up they are off. Although they obviously have to go by a rather roundabout route to avoid the road closures, it doesn't take very long at all.
  • Thanks Lazybones, I'll try the bus this year and see what happens!
  • If the organisers/ local councils read this, I have 2 comments to add...

    1) can they please make sure there are 2 ferries on this year - an hour wait after running last year wasn't welcome

    2) One possible solution to the cost could behave to arrange a home-stay programme? If local families could be encouraged to take runners for 1 or 2 nights for a small fee - runners may get more of a flavour of the area and take advantage of the northern hospitality...

    just a thought.

  • Queen of Scandinavia...far from regal. Expensive and overrated and no celebrities at the so-called celeb dinner. Ran the race and enjoyed it but no thanks to Nirvana. Shame on you, Runner's World for being associated with such a disappointment.
  • I drove to south shields on the sat pitched my tent within quater of a mile slept like a log on my nice comfey air bed with ear plugs in,caught the metro for 1.80£ arrived in newcastle in plenty of time then after race went back to shower at campsite packed tent away then went home .Only prob was traffic getting home .
  • Another tip! Book a train ticket at least 14 days in advance and you will get some real savings. I was quoted £71 for a single to Bournemouth by Railtrack. When I got on the 'web' I managed to get the same journey for £24.30!! Get onto Railtracks timetables and look at which companies do which part of the journey, then get on each respectives website and do the ordering yourself...easy peasy
  • When comparing GNR with London one should remember that due to the North Sea all the traffic has to head in the same direction out of South Sheilds. London has infinately better communications, i.e. more than 1 tube station. With the GNR at least you don't have to visit the venue twice once to pick up the running number ( as it was in 2000). I do the GNR each year, fortunately have access to free accomodation in Felling nearby so apart from queueing for metro or buses, both in my experience have similar travelling/waiting times and the southbound A1 which always queues through Yorkshire its a great day out.
  • ... which tends to suggest a different finishing point is in order?
  • the irratating point of the GNR on the accomodation front is a lot of B&Bs try and cash in by insisting on 2 night minimum stay.

    That said i've done 3 and loved all of them.
Sign In or Register to comment.