Virgin London Marathon Assistance
Early on Sun 26 Apr 15, a team from RAF Halton made their way to London to assist with the Virgin London Marathon 2015. The team was made up from Station Personnel, TAC, RTS and SMTW who had to all pull together and work as a team.
Upon arrival near Trafalgar Square the team took over the closest McDonalds to gain essential nutrients from the breakfast selection to get them through the day. Once full with breakfast goodness the team made their way down to The Mall to collect their packed lunches for the day and their nice bright orange jackets which differentiated us as ‘Staff’. The team then made their way to what can only be described as our ‘holding pen’ to hurry up and wait. Eventually 2 of the 38 articulated lorries loaded with runners personal bags parked up in front of us.
The team was split into 2; one for the Championship/Elite lorry and one for ‘general’ runners, where in excess of 3,000 bags had to be sorted into number order ready to hand back to the weary runners once they had completed the 26.2 miles.
Once the runners started to come through to the baggage area the team really did swing into action. AC’s Roberts and Cresswell from SMTW, were strategically placed on the lorry and watching with their eagle eyes, were able to spot and shout out numbers of the runners with corresponding numbers to our bags. The team then selected those bags and waited at the barrier to return them to their owners. A number of elite runners made comment on how efficiently this service was provided. This was fantastic feedback, as with them completing the marathon in around 2hrs 30 mins, little time was left for the team on this lorry to sort their bags.
Providing morale for as many runners as possible, we even got to cheer our fearless leader through the finishing area; WO Pam Daley completing the Marathon in an impressive 5hrs and 32 mins. Everyone involved had a very long but enjoyable day out, doing something very worthwhile.