There were 36,000 people taking part in the London Marathon in 2010. Some people were serious runners hoping to set themselves good running times, others were in costumes raising money for charity. Indeed last year, £47.2 million was raised for charitable causes.

Participants included Richard Branson dressed as a butterfly and Princess Beatrice. The Princess was trying to break a record for completing a marathon tied to the largest number of other people.

There was a wonderful atmosphere. Amongst the spectators, there were some people just watching the race and some people supporting friends or family that were in the marathon. Unfortunately for the people around me, the online tracking system that enabled people to find their runners was not working – possibly because of too much traffic?

The spectators along the side of the road would shout out the names of runners – even if they didn’t know the runner (some had their names printed on their clothes / costumes). It seemed to provide encouragement to the runners as they would smile and say thank you if they heard their name being called.

Some spectators also had tubs of sweets that they would hold out and offer to any runners that wanted them. This too was greatly appreciated by the runners in the marathon.

It is a great day out and I’d recommend it to anyone. Due to the volume of people in London for the marathon it is quite difficult to move between sites on the route. There are also some places along the route that are very busy – such as Tower Bridge and anywhere from the 25th mile – so one would have to get to those locations very very very early in the day to ensure a good viewing position.

Congratulations to all who participated!! Throughout the day I passed many people around London who had completed the marathon, and they were all glowing. Most people looked like they could do it again at the drop of a hat..

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