As temperatures soared to 24 degrees on Sunday 22 April, over 40,000 runners completed the 2018 Virgin Money London Marathon, and among those making their way from Blackheath to The Mall were 15 MPs from all over the UK.

Crossing the finish line first was London Marathon debutant John Lamont in a time of 3:38:03. The Conservative MP for Berwickshire, Roxburgh and Selkirk was nearly twenty minutes ahead of fellow Tory Alun Cairns who came home in a time of 3:56:46. He was followed closely by Stuart McDonald in 3:58:31, who was the first Scottish National Party (SNP) member to finish the 2018 race.

Alex Norris was the first Labour MP home in a time of 4:24:46, while fellow Labour MP Ruth Cadbury was the first female MP to finish in 6:07:02.

Cairns, the Secretary of State for Wales, was the most experienced MP in the field with the 2018 race his seventh London Marathon. On the other end of the spectrum, ten MPs made their running debuts with Shabana Mahmood, Labour MP for Birmingham Ladywood, rounding the day off with a finish time of 7:46:32.

Speaking on The Mall, Cairns said: “It’s been fantastic. This is my seventh London Marathon and it’s probably the hardest. The temperature was so high. I’ve got a rule that I don’t walk but I did today because it was so hot. The crowd just cheer you on; on one occasion the crowd started cheering my name and as soon as I started running I had the biggest cheer of all.”

Raising money for the NSPCC and Vale Women’s Aid, a local charity in his constituency of Vale of Glamorgan, Cairns knows the importance of running for a charity to keep you going through the hard miles. He said: “It’s one of the best experiences; most importantly for the charity that you’re raising money for. I have now probably raised well over £50,000 since I’ve been running the London Marathon, and this time I’ll probably raise £9,000. That’s the most important thing.”

Meanwhile, Cadbury, who represents Brentford and Isleworth, was the only MP representing a London borough on race day, and said of the day: “It was hot and I was well over an hour over what I thought I’d do. The best thing on the course was the crowds. It was just fantastic, such a positive atmosphere.”

Asked if she was considering running again after taking part in her first ever marathon on the hottest day of the year so far, she replied: “Right now I don’t want to think about that!”

Fellow first-timer, and Chairman of the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for Running, Tom Pursglove was delighted to finish in a time of 4:11:23. He said: “Running my first London Marathon was a huge challenge for me, having never run anywhere near that distance before, and I was pleased to complete the race.

“I am so grateful to everyone who so generously donated to my fundraising effort for two local good causes - Crazy Hats Breast Cancer Care and Corby Nightlight. I’d like to say a huge thank you to all those who expressed their support; to the incredible crowds along the route; the remarkable volunteers who made the day possible; as well as my fellow runners for their camaraderie - each and every one made it such a memorable day and spurred me on.”

The Tory MP for Corby has only ever watched the London Marathon on television, but was impressed with the organisation, and hopes to recruit many more MPs in future years.

He said: “I can safely say that the London Marathon is even more impressive in real life - a really incredible sporting occasion and a very British celebration, unique to any marathon anywhere else in the world.

“I have really enjoyed stepping into my new role as the Chairman of Parliament’s Running APPG, and I am hoping to cajole more colleagues into running next year. Some of my colleagues have already expressed an interest in taking part and I am hoping to drum up a few more over the next few months so that next year we can say that we have a record number of MPs running.”

And asked if he’ll be running alongside his Westminster colleagues, Pursglove was hesitant to commit to the 2019 Virgin Money London Marathon.

“At present, I am not absolutely guaranteeing I will be one of them – if you asked me at the finish line it would have been a definite ‘no - never again!’ However, I’m wavering, so watch this space…”




Finish Time

John Lamont


MP for Berwickshire, Roxburgh & Selkirk


Alun Cairns


Secretary of State for Wales and MP for Vale of Glamorgan


Stuart McDonald


SNP for Cumbernauld, Kilsyth and Kirkintilloch East


Tom Pursglove


MP for Corby


Alex Norris


MP for Nottingham North


Jon Ashworth


MP for Leicester South


Chris Green


MP for Bolton West


Chris Evans


MP for Islwyn


Nic Dakin


MP for Scunthorpe


David Linden


SNP for Glasgow East


James Morris


MP for Halesowen and Rowley Regis


Ruth Cadbury


MP for Brentford and Isleworth


Nick Smith


MP for Blaenau Gwent


Jenny Chapman


MP for Darlington


Shabana Mahmood


MP for Birmingham Ladywood