Charity set to drum up a lively atmosphere for ABP Southampton Half Marathon Runners

November 20, 2014


Image: Staff and supporters of The Waterfall Trust practise their motivational skills

A symphony of drums, rousing applause and jelly babies…just a few of the ideas the first confirmed milemakers have to keep runners in high spirits at next year’s ABP Southampton Half Marathon.

The Waterfall Trust, which helps women with addictions, is the first charity to pledge its help as an official ABP Milemaker and hopes to drum up support for the charity, as well as a lively atmosphere, as it lines one of the 13.1 miles of the route.

The inaugural ABP Southampton Half Marathon and 10k takes place on April 26 and will see thousands of runners pound the city streets, taking in the city’s iconic landmarks on the way.

As a key supporter of the event ABP Port of Southampton is arranging for groups and charities across the city to act as ‘ABP Milemakers’, cheering on runners at each mile and keeping them motivated with everything from inspiring placards to sweets and water. Every charity or community group that acts as an ABP Milemaker will receive a £200 donation from ABP after the event and the group that are voted the most motivational on the day by the runners themselves will receive a special £500 prize.

The Waterfall Trust, based in Southampton, is the first to sign up and also plans to enter a team of runners.

Polly Allen, fundraising events coordinator at the charity, said: “When we saw Southampton was going to have its first half marathon we were so excited and instantly wanted to get involved. It will be a great opportunity for us to get our name out there in Southampton. After all, the more people who hear about us, the more people we can help. We have staff and supporters running too and it’s warming to think they will be treading the streets that the women we help live on.”

The Waterfall Trust has musical plans to motivate participants on the day. It is going to make an orchestra of homemade drums and shakers, which they will beat in symphony as weary runners approach. Other members of their ABP Milemaker team will hand out jelly babies and water to keep runners fuelled and the rest of the team will hold signs emblazoned with motivational words.

ABP Southampton director, Nick Ridehalgh, who is also taking part in the run, said: “This is just the spirit we want all ABP Milemakers to embrace. Running just over 13 miles is no mean feat so the motivation and cheer that the ABP Milemakers provide will make a huge difference to people taking part, myself included!”

Nick is urging other groups across Southampton to put themselves forward as milemakers and added: “Whether you’re a scout group, cheerleading team or school, we’d love you to play a very important role in this historic event for the city.”

To find out more about being an ABP Milemaker and volunteer call Helen Goosey on 02380 254721 or email

To find out more about The Waterfall Trust visit