Virgin Money London Marathon Start

Apply for 2022 Charity of the Year

London Marathon Events (LME), organisers of the London Marathon is looking to appoint a Charity of the Year (COTY) partner for the 2022 event.

LME is the organiser of some of the world’s leading mass participation events in running, cycling and swimming including Prudential RideLondon, Vitality London 10,000, The Vitality Big Half, Children with Cancer UK Swim Serpentine and others.

The London Marathon is the world’s most successful one day annual fundraising event and has set a new fundraising world record every year for the past 13 years. The total raised for thousands of charities since 1981 is now more than £1 billion pounds. Charities and their runners play a central role in the world’s greatest marathon.

Who should apply?

LME is looking to appoint a charity that is looking to fund an innovative project (or projects) that will create a lasting impact for its beneficiaries. We’re interested in projects that will be financially sustainable and deliver long term benefits to the organisation.

Any UK registered charity of any size is welcome to apply; however we do ask that you consider the work required to maximise this opportunity for your organisation before applying.

Charities that develop a compelling but simple communications campaign alongside a robust fundraising and recruitment plan are most likely to succeed in delivering on the potential of the opportunity.   

The chosen charity will receive help to maximise its impact from the LME team and its partners to deliver its campaign.

About London Marathon Events

LME’s vision is Inspiring Activity with a mission to deliver excellence in mass participation sporting events, inspiring participation in sport across all demographics and abilities.

LME has led the world in showing the power of mass participation sport as a force for good. We are very proud of the hugely positive impacts our events have had on millions of people since the first London Marathon in 1981: inspiring activity, improving health (physical and mental), bringing communities together, raising huge sums of money for charities and supporting local businesses.

Our nine pillars guide everything that we do. These are:

  • To show mankind that, on occasions, the “family of man” can be united
  • To have fun and provide some happiness and sense of achievement in a troubled world
  • To inspire more people to take up sport
  • To maximise revenue for charities
  • To raise money for the provision of recreational facilities
  • To improve the overall standard and status of British distance running
  • To help London and Surrey tourism
  • To prove when it comes to organising major events, Britain is best
  • To become the global leader in sustainable mass participation sports events

What we’ll offer you

The London Marathon COTY is a unique opportunity for a charity to reach new audiences and raise millions for its cause.

As COTY for 2022, the charity will receive:

  • 250 guaranteed places in 2022, plus 50 in 2023, 25 in 2024 and 10 in 2025 at ballot price
  • Exclusive use of the title ‘Official Charity’ in the 12 months up to the 2022 race
  • Other benefits including opportunities to feature in participants’ communications, dedicated social media posts, invitations to media functions, introductions to other event sponsors and much more
  • Regular planning meetings with the LME team

The successful COTY for 2022 will be invited to attend planning meetings and shadow the 2021 COTY in the run up to the 2021 marathon.

What is the process?

UK registered charities are invited to apply using the application form below.

Your responses to these questions in the form will be assessed by the LME COTY panel and used to select the shortlist.

A minimum of five charities will be shortlisted and invited to present to the LME COTY panel. Scheduled for the week beginning 18 May 2020.

Following the shortlist pitches, two charities will be asked to a final presentation in the week beginning 8 June 2020.  

The closing date for applications is 17:00 on Friday 3 April 2020. No applications will be accepted after the deadline.

We look forward to hearing from you.

Official charities of the London Marathon

Since 2010:

  • 2019: The Dementia Revolution (Alzheimer's Society & Alzheimer's Research UK)
  • 2018: Teenage Cancer Trust
  • 2017: The Royal Foundation's Heads Together Campaign
  • 2016: NSPCC
  • 2015: Cancer Research UK
  • 2014: Anthony Nolan
  • 2013: YouthNet and Age UK
  • 2012: Team PB (Prostate Cancer Charity and Breast Cancer Care)
  • 2011: Oxfam
  • 2010: CLIC Sargent