Run Wigan Festival 2018
Wigan Half Marathon







*Video courtesy of Wigan Observer


If you are interested in sponsoring this event please click here for more information about our sponsorship opportunities.

Principle Sponsor

HW Moon Toyota

Associate Sponsors

Bridgman Physiotherapy
Regan and Hallworth
The Endurance Store
Wigan Warriors

If you are interested in sponsoring this event please click here for more information about our sponsorship opportunities.



Joining Jack and the Run Wigan Festival – Tuesday March 20th

Dear runner,

After a number of discussions with everyone involved in the staging of the event, it is with great regret that we are unable to reschedule the 2018 Wigan Half Marathon.

As a charity, friends and a family, we were all absolutely heartbroken when we realised that cancelling the half marathon in the small hours of Sunday was the only option left open to us.

There is an incredible amount of work and costs which go into staging these events. A 13.1 mile race covers a huge section of our town and the undertaking by our event partners, the traffic management team, the council’s highways team, the stewards, the volunteers and our organising charity is enormous. We did not take the decision lightly but ultimately, we think it was the correct one. Runners, volunteers and spectators’ safety is paramount.

We have explored the possibility of staging the event on an alternative date but as an event organised by a charity we simply cannot incur the costs. We are so disappointed, no one more so than our official race starter Jack. He completed the 13.1 miles in his wheelchair at last year’s inaugural event. He even came up with the idea of giving our runners a free pie to say thank you this year.

We have therefore taken the decision not to reschedule but to concentrate our energies on making the 2019 Run Wigan Festival bigger and better than ever – more news on that to follow.

We would therefore like to offer our 1,427 HM runners one of the following two options

  1. To complete the route virtually and receive a finishers’ medal and T-shirt posted out to your home address (the deadline to complete a virtual run Monday, April 30th)
  2. A full refund (the deadline to apply for a full refund is Saturday, March 31st)

We would appeal to runners that option 2 is taken only as a last resort. Our event was created to raise as much money as possible for our organising charity Joining Jack to fund research and help boys living with an incurable muscle-wasting disease, many of who are unable to run. Despite the success of the 5k and the Family Mile, Sunday’s event did come with a number of costs which the charity will need to cover.

Please send an email and include your: name, address and runner number with your preferred choice by the appropriate deadline.

Thank you from Joining Jack

As a gesture of goodwill we would like to offer all runners who do not decide to take a refund, a half marathon T-shirt posted out to their home address.

Thank you from everyone at Run Wigan Festival and Joining Jack for your patience and understanding and ultimately your support on what started out as a stressful but ultimately uplifting day on Sunday. Jack also hopes you will return to Wigan for next year’s event and enjoy his thank you pie!

The Run Wigan Festival Team & Joining Jack

Thanks Jack x

We have teamed up once more with the Mighty Wigan Warriors to bring you a fantastic offer of FREE ENTRY to watch them play at the DW Stadium.

Their next home match following the Run Wigan Festival is against the Huddersfield Giants on Friday 23rd March - 8pm Kick off. All you need to do is take your Run Wigan Festival 2018 Wigan Warriors flyer and your race medal (which you will get in your goody bag as you cross the finish line) to the West Stand ticket office at the stadium, any time the week of the game, to receive your FREE ticket!

Another fantastic incentive if you haven’t already signed up to join us and a lovely thank you if you already have!

T’s and C’s – One ticket per person. Seating is unreserved in the East Stand.

We are absolutely thrilled to confirm that ALL Run Wigan Festival runners will receive £5 off a ticket to see Wigan Athletic’s FA Cup quarter final clash with Southampton at the DW Stadium.

The event’s organising charity Joining Jack has teamed up with Wembley-chasing Latics to offer every registered runner a £5 discount on a ticket in the Family (South) Stand for the game on March 18th.

Following the club’s remarkable fifth round victory over runaway Premier League leaders Manchester City last month, and the decision to stage the game on the same day as the festival, the charity and club have joined forces to offer runners at the event’s half marathon, 5k or Family Mile, £5 off tickets for the game.

“It’s going to be a tremendous day,” said Matt Johnson from Joining Jack, the main organiser of the running event, which was launched last year.

“We were all cheering Latics on against Manchester City a week ago and when the quarter final clash was confirmed as the same day as the run, there was a sharp intake of breath bearing in mind our half marathon route takes in the stadium at Mile 4.

“But we have spoken to the club this week and they have been fantastic. It is an incredible gesture by them to offer ALL our runners a £5 discount. Our Family Mile for under 11s is only £4 to register and tickets for under 11s are £5. So for £4, you can head into Wigan, be part of the amazing atmosphere of our event and then head along to the DW Stadium and cheer on the Latics. It will be a historic day for the town.”

The charity has taken the decision to bring forward the start time for the Family Mile race to 12.30pm in order to give runners plenty of time to take part before heading along to the game.

* Runners need to register by 1pm next Tuesday, March 13th to have their runner number posted out. They need take their runner number along to the club’s ticket office to be stamped to earn a £5 discount for a ticket. The £5 discount can only be used to purchase tickets before 5pm on Friday, March 16th.

We are absolutely thrilled to confirm another amazing live line-up on the main stage at this year’s Run Wigan Festival.

This year’s headliners are the fantastic five-piece that make up Oaces, the north west’s number one Oasis tribute act. Oaces made their debut supporting our organising charity Joining Jack at last year’s 5th Wigan 10k and were so popular with our runners and supporters that they have agreed to return to the Market Street venue.

Joining them on stage are the Wigan-based The Vellys. The fab four are fresh from their debut at last year’s 10k. The award winning Band of Covers are band number three. They started out in 2012 and play among others, songs by Arctic Monkeys, David Bowie, The Rolling Stones, Iggy Pop, James, The Killers, Kings of Leon, Oasis, The Stone Roses, Pulp and many more.

Last but not least are Birchall will make their debut to complete this year’s line-up. Ricky and James are two brothers born and raised in a musical family in Wigan with a huge ambition to add something different to the music industry.

Our live music will get under way from 10.45am on the main stage on Market Street.

Yes, you heard right! Finishers of the Run Wigan Festival's 5k or Half Marathon will get a token for a free pie from our friends at the Pound Bakery courtesy of our organising charity Joining Jack! Jack, the wonderful little boy behind the charity, would like to extend his huge thank you for all of your donations and participation in events with a lovely pie as you cross the finish line. Your runner number will have a detachable token at the bottom which you will be able to tear off and collect on the day of the race. It's as easy as PIE!

True Wigan Style!

Please note there will be a vegetarian option too.

All our Half Marathon runners will receive a fabulous #challengeyourself Wigan Half Marathon finishers T-shirt. Created by the very talented designers at ADM Leisurewear specifically for us to pop in your goody bags that you will be handed as you cross the finish line along with your well-earned medal and a cool bottle of water (some other goodies will be in there too don’t worry).

After the Wigan 10k medal won The Running Bible’s Medal of the Month, the pressure was on for our designers to come up with something special for the 5k and the Half Marathon. So here they are…

Our Half Marathon medal features the picturesque Haigh Hall and will be awarded to everyone who finishes the 13.1 mile race while the 5k medal is a beautiful multicolour rainbow with the charming Mesnes Park café in the backdrop and we even have our fab Joining Jack medal with a black ribbon for all our junior runners taking part in our Run Wigan Festival Family Mile.


You can check out all the twists and turns and fabulous sites on this year’s Wigan Half Marathon through Relive My Run.

Huge thanks to Wigan Harriers runner Chris Green who captured the route for us along with some of our fabulous pics from last year’s inaugural event. Wigan Half Marathon and Wigan 10k runners may recognise Joining Jack regular Chris as the annual winner of the best haircut at our events.

Take a look at the route and all the hot spots to get ready for our 2018 race on March 18th.

Chris Green

This is a fantastic opportunity to get the whole family involved. Run Wigan Festivals Family Mile was a huge success in 2017, we never thought we would have a whopping 700 children register but now we are aiming for a massive 1,000 in 2018!

This super safe run on closed roads kicks off on Market Street in the town centre and takes in the sights of Mesnes Park before returning to the finish line where all those who register can pick up a Family Mile medal and goody bag from our lovely volunteers. Adults are welcome to run for free with participating children (if they can keep up)!

Why not dig out your best fancy dress or paint your face, get involved!

Wigan Fmaily Mile finisher
Wigan Fmaily Mile finisher
Wigan Fmaily Mile finisher

WOW! What a day! The 2017 inaugural Run Wigan Festival - despite the odd downpour on the start line - was an enormous success.

More than 4,000 runners registering to take part in the Half Marathon, 5k and Family Mile completely exceeded our expectations and we were absolutely thrilled.

And the second flagship fundraising running event organised by Joining Jack was so well received by the Wigan and running community that within 48 hours of the event we had launched registration for 2018!

We had a terrific 2,100 runners in the Half Marathon at 9.30am, 1,200 runners in the 5k and an incredible 700 children aged up to 11 (and a host of mums, dads, aunties, uncles and grandparents) in our fabulous Family Mile.

Along with great support from the hundreds of supporters who braved some rather wet conditions, awesome sounds from our fab four local bands, The Beard Band, Marcadia, The Ravellas and The V.C, and a 100-strong Run Wigan Festival volunteer army, we were absolutely delighted with the whole event.

Race organiser, Matt Johnson, said: “This was our first Run Wigan Festival but it won’t be our last – we can’t wait to so it all over again next year. Thank you to everyone who helped put the whole event together, from our sponsors and race partners to our incredible army of volunteers and of course our runners – bring on 2018!”

For the record our winners on the day were:

  • Half Marathon Men: Ian Livesey, Barlick Fell Runners 1hr 12mins 18secs
  • Half Marathon Women: Lucy Niemz, 1hr 24mins 58secs
  • 5k Men: Chris Livesey, Salford Harriers, 15mins 26secs
  • 5k Women: Kirsty Longley, Liverpool Harriers, 17mins 27secs
2017 Run Wigan Festival winners

Two of the three races at Run Wigan Festival, the 5k and the Family Mile, will take place on closed roads, while the third, the Half Marathon will operate a rolling road closures policy with runners’ safety paramount.

Please take a look at our map of the closures and times to see how this will operate. We would like to say a big thank you to all the residents and businesses affected by this for their support and patience which makes our event possible.

Run Wigan Festival road closures

WE are really excited about our inaugural Run Wigan Festival and tackling two new distances and we are delighted to have teamed up with High 5 Sports Nutrition to fuel all our fantastic runners.

As training is stepped up and we get close to the big day we are asking all our runners to check that they are using the correct nutrition during training and on the day.

On the day we will be supplying:

  • High 5 Energy gels to our Half Marathon runners at two of our water stations at Mile 6 and just before Mile 9
  • A High 5 protein bar in their finishers’ bags for all Half Marathon runners
  • A High 5 protein sachet in the finishers’ bags for all 5k runner

Big thanks to our associate race sponsors for fuelling our runners!

Car parks


  • Access to The Grand Arcade (Car park 3) will be via Crompton Street
  • The Galleries (Car park D) will be open from 8am on race day
  • The remaining town centre car parks have 24-hour access

The 2017 Run Wigan Festival, sponsored by HW Moon Toyota, is our first and follows on from the huge success of our previous four Wigan 10ks – all of which have had some fantastic medals for our 12,000+ runners, so we really couldn’t let our Half Marathon, 5k and Family Mile runners down on the bling front.

We have gone all out with our designers to ensure the inaugural event has some of the best medals around.

Our Half Marathon medal features the picturesque Haigh Hall and will be awarded to everyone who finishes the 13.1 mile race while the 5k medal is a beautiful blue colour and we even have a fab new Joining Jack medal for all our junior runners taking part in our Run Wigan Festival Family Mile.

We are absolutely delighted to be teaming up once again with our event partners The Endurance Store to bring our runners some of the best prizes available.

Our first three male and female runners home in the Half Marathon and 5k races will each receive vouchers from The Endurance Store.

Wigan Half Marathon

  • 1st. £200 TES vouchers
  • 2nd. £100 TES vouchers
  • 3rd. £50 TES vouchers

Wigan 5K

  • 1st. £125 TES vouchers
  • 2nd. £75 TES vouchers
  • 3rd. £50 TES vouchers

Our top three home in the Half Marathon will also receive the following cash prizes:

  • 1st. £100
  • 2nd. £50
  • 3rd. £25

PLUS… should our winner break the race record set by Ian Livesey of Barlick Fell Runners in 2017 at 1:12:18 they will get an extra £100 cash.

Each of our male and female category winners from our over 40s to over 70s will receive a TES £20 voucher. Please see our ‘Prizes’ section for a full breakdown of categories.

Matt Johnson, race organiser said: “It is an amazing gesture by our friends at the Endurance Store to offer these incredible prizes. We hope it will mean another massive turnout of runners supporting our event for what is going to be another fantastic day in Wigan. Should someone win the Half and set a new record they could be heading home with £400 in cash and vouchers in their back pocket, we think it’s a brilliant incentive.”

Following on from the success of the first Run Wigan Festival in 2017 Joining Jack was delighted to announce the date for the second one just 48 hours after runners had crossed the finish line.

With the extremely popular and growing Wigan 10k on for the sensational 6th year, we had a brilliant response from the Run Wigan Festival too so thought, why not do it all again? So here we are all set for Sunday 18th March 2018 for the second Run Wigan Festival.

Races will start and finish in our wonderful town centre on Market Street and will take in some of the most popular landmarks Wigan has to offer. There will be live entertainment throughout the day on our main stage in the town centre and of course the European Markets will keep us all fuelled throughout the day.

Matt Johnson, the main organiser of the Wigan 10k and Run Wigan Festival revealed the charity’s thinking behind the decision to plan a second race.

He said: “We just wanted to build on the amazing success of the 10k. We think the people of Wigan and the North-West have really taken the event to their hearts and we are hoping Run Wigan Festival will also grow and create the same incredible atmosphere.

“The 5k race gave runners who perhaps felt the 10k may be a little long for them a chance to get into running and also offered our 10k runners a great fast 5k to include in their training. While the half marathon gave our 10k runners the chance to take the next step.

“The success of the Family Mile was something none of us expected. We had an amazing turn-out of 700 children taking part, some just running for fun, others raising money for charity, it was just brilliant to see so many little ones involved. We can’t wait to welcome everyone again this year and make this event one you wouldn’t want to miss!”

FOR our fab new event we have a fantastic new title sponsor in the shape of HW Moon Toyota (

HW Moon have a long history in the town and have been a loyal supporter of the Wigan Warriors club, one of our event’s supporting partners for many years so it seemed like a natural progression for them to become part of the Joining Jack family. Their Challenge Way location even features on our Half Marathon route so runners will be sure to receive a warm welcome along the way.

Centre Principal Steven Mather said: “We are delighted to be the main sponsor of the Run Wigan Festival.

“We were approached by Joining Jack and it was a no brainer to get involved really. We have a lot to do with Wigan Warriors so there is already a connection there, it’s a wonderful charity.”

But the HW Moon’s team’s support doesn’t end there – they have a four-man team taking parting in the Half Marathon and 19 members of staff registered for the 5k!

And be sure to keep an eye out for the Run Wigan Festival wheels, kindly donated by HW Moon around the town promoting our event.

Joining Jack is a charity founded by Alex and Andy Johnson, the parents of a then four-year-old Jack Johnson, after he was diagnosed with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD), a debilitating muscle-wasting disease for which there is currently no cure.

Jack was diagnosed in October 2011, at the tender age of three. Failing a medical breakthrough, Jack’s life will follow a predetermined path, mapped out by the wasting of his muscles.

He will no longer be able to walk by the time he reaches adolescence and will lose the use of every single muscle in his body thereafter. He may need spinal rods to keep him upright and ventilation to help him breath. Eventually his heart and lungs will fail and he will die.

Joining Jack was born four months after Jack’s diagnosis with the sole aim of finding a cure. All money raised is used to spread awareness of the horrible disease which affects approximately one in every 3,500 boys worldwide.

Thanks to some amazing support from their local community and the rugby and sporting world, the charity has raised more than £2million which has been invested in research and has funded a number of clinical trial posts to give the Duchenne community real hope that a cure or at least a treatment which will slow down the boys’ decline, is within touching distance. Any profit raised from your registration for this year’s race will go the charity. Runners can raise money for Joining Jack or any charity they feel close to or they can simply run for fun.



Given the time of the decision to cancel the race the administration team were on route to the venue and could only access social media apps via personal mobile phones. Once in the town centre, the internet reception was poor at the race information desk and the team had to wait until they could access wifi at a local coffee shop to make the necessary updates on the site. The RWF team can only apologise for this delay and the inconvenience this caused to some runners that do not have access to any social media platforms and so travelled to the event not knowing the race had been cancelled.

Given the time of the decision to cancel the race the administration team were on route to the venue and could only access social media apps via personal mobile phones. Once in the town centre, the internet reception was poor at the race information desk and the team had to wait until they could access wifi at a local coffee shop. By this time it was too late to inform runners. The RWF team can only apologise for this delay and the inconvenience this caused to some runners that do not have access to any social media platforms and so travelled to the event not knowing the race had been cancelled.

After much deliberation, the decision was taken not to reschedule the race due to the costs incurred by our organising charity. The event team have decided not to hold the Wigan Half on the morning of the Wigan10k due to the risk involved affecting the event in September. Complications would also have arisen due to the agreements held with different title sponsors for both the Run Wigan Festival and the Wigan10k. Also consideration was given to residents and the disruption it would cause based on the one-lap route.

We are not offering the option to defer until next year. The 2019 Wigan Half Marathon will stand as a separate event.

We are not offering the option to transfer entries to the Wigan 10k. The 2018 Wigan 10k will stand as a completely separate event.

Yes, the Wigan Warriors Club have agreed to allow all our Half Marathon runners FREE entry to the Super League clash with Huddersfield Giants on Friday, March 23rd (worth £22). Simply print a copy of the ‘Warriors V Giants’ flyer emailed separately to all HM runners, along to the DW Stadium West Stand Ticket Office.

Runners have until Monday, 30th April to inform us they have virtually completed the run. Medals will be posted out between 3rd April and 30th April.

No. Runners do not need to send proof that they have completed the run, simply send an email to:

If you complete the run virtually, you can still collect sponsorship money. If you do not complete the run, the decision is yours.

No. Medals will only be sent out to runners who complete a virtual run.

Yes all runners that do not request a full refund will receive the Wigan Half T-shirt in the post as a thank you from Jack and for any inconvenience caused. The T-shirts will be posted out by our supplier ADM Leisurewear Ltd between 3rd April and 30th April.

Yes. All of our 1,427 registered Half Marathon runners can complete a virtual run and receive T-shirt and a medal.

Yes. All of our 1,427 registered Half Marathon runners can request a refund if they wish.

Refunds will be issued between 3rd April and 30th.

No. The free pie was part of an on the day offer and will no longer be available.

We are hoping to have registration open for the 2019 Wigan Half Marathon in the next two weeks


Be a Volunteer

The Run Wigan Festival wouldn’t be possible without our fantastic volunteers.

We are hoping to have a team of around 80 on the day who give up their time to help us ensure everything goes without a hitch. As a charity we rely on our amazing team to make us one of the best running events around – we couldn’t do it without them.

Our volunteer roles range from marshalling the course at the start and finish line directing runners and keeping the route clear of crowds, to keeping our runners on the course. We also have a team managing the baggage area in the town centre and handing out goodie bags, water and refreshments to our finishers.

As a charity this will be our second major running event and with all three races combined we are targeting around 3,000 runners - so we are going to need even more pairs of hands than ever helping things run smoothly and of course, enjoying the incredible atmosphere.

If you would be willing and available to help this year it would be fantastic to have you involved. We will need volunteers from 8am on the day of the race, until approximately 1.30pm but these times might be subject to slight change. If you are unable to commit to the full duration, we would be happy to stagger volunteer times for two separate slots (8am-11am & 10.30am-1.30pm).

If you are interested, you know someone who might be, or if you just want a little more information, please get in touch via email – it would be great to hear from you. Please let us know as well if there is any particular role you would prefer.

We look forward to seeing you on the day! #thebestsupporters


Diary Dates

Check out a host of running and fundraising events organised by the Joining Jack and Wigan 10k team throughout the year.


Supported Charities

Who will you be running for?

The Run Wigan Festival events can be run in support of any charity that is close to your heart. Below is a selection of local charities that would benefit from your support.

Joining Jack, The Mayor's Charity, Joseph's Goal, Wigan Rotary Club, Wigan Youth Zone, Champsappeal, Wigan Stars, Wigan & Leigh Deaf Children's Society & Carrieon Fighting.

Click on the various logos to find out more about each organsiation.

Age UK Wigan
Blessing in Diguise
Carrieon Fighting
Champs Appeal
Joining Jack
Josephs Goal
Maddis Butterflies
Mayor's charity
Rotary Club Wigan
Samaritans Wigan
Wigan and Leigh Deaf Childrens Society
Wigan Stars
Wigan Youth Zone
Willow Project

Supporting Partners

Joining Jack
Wigan Council
Inspiring healthy lifestyles
Fylde Coast Running

Site powered by