“ The Rotary Club of Leighton Linslade are delighted that within current government guidelines we have been able to join with partners and pull together a informal Rotary Community Corps to recognise the 75th
Anniversary of VJ Day and the end of WW2
The event will take the form of a Marathon Relay which will visit most areas of Leighton Linslade and Heath & Reach, with the runners or walkers carrying a scroll containing the names of those from the area who made the ultimate sacrifice.
The relay will leave a town centre location in Leighton Buzzard after the playing of the Last Post at 11am and finish at the War Memorial at 8pm with their names being read and the playing of Sunset at 20:08.
Each relay leg will be 2,194 yards acknowledging across time the 2,194 days that WW2 lasted with participants visiting a number of notable local sites, such as the site of RAF Stanbridge and Oxenden House the HQ of WW2 Radar operations.
Whilst members of the public are urged not to congregate in large groups and to observe social distancing we are encouraging people to come to their door or garden to give the participants a wave as they go past. Routes are included with this press release.
Opportunities to donate to Rotary and its local partner charities will be available via virginmoneygiving.com and the support vehicle accompanying the runners and it is hoped key points including the town centre will have a presence all day to raise awareness and help facilitate donations as well, which will all be going to charities operating in Leighton Linslade
We are very conscious that we are living through unprecedented times so we hope our community will understand that arrangements will be subject to change, possibly at the last minute and that we will be continually monitoring government advice.
Simon Marshall President of Leighton Linslade Rotary Club said
“ With so many of our community events in 2020 being cancelled due to Covid 19 and having lost the VE Day celebrations, Rotary had been looking to do something that would allow our community to recognise the huge sacrifice of the WW2 generation. We are therefore delighted that after significant consultation and using our experiences with Santa we have been able to work with partners to deliver a “Marathon for Peace”. What better way to honour those who endured the marathon of WW2 than to run and walk the traditional 26.2 miles and maybe a bit more and then to read their names at the playing of Sunset. So many local lives will have been touched when the 5th Battalion Bedfordshire & Hertfordshire Regiment were taken prisoner at Singapore in 1942 that VJ Day has a special resonance in our area.
However I am sure that generation would also have wanted us to look forward peacefully and with hope and all the charities participating will as the Covid restrictions lift be out there working in Leighton Linslade as they have before, making our community a even better place.
So if you can, please either donate on the day or via the virginmoneygiving.com page and support the local charities taking part.
Participants include in no particular order
Rotary,SSAFA,Dogs for Good, ATC, Friends Within( Mencap) Navel Cadets,
Yes We Can, Scouts,Guides, MK Dons SET, Town Mayors Charities,LB Hockey, MS Society, OMM.
VJ DAY 15th August
The Peace Marathon organised by the Rotary Club of Leighton Linslade
Start at 11am at the Market Cross
Hockliffe Street/ West Street
Continuing in north of town
Returning on Garden Hedge
To South Street/Stanbridge Road
To Grovebury Road Retail Park
1pm Thede Way to Cod & Waffle
Astral Park Area
RAF Stanbridge Area
2.45pm To Lywood Road Area
Harrow Road Area
4.45pm Atterbury Road Area
Heath Road to Heath & Reach
Return Plantation Road
6.00pm To Tesco’s Vimy Road
Bideford Green Ring Road
8.00pm Finish at Church Square War Memorial