More than 400 runners took part in the first running of a charity Half Marathon and a new 10k event around Hatfield House.

The picturesque event, organised by GO Running Herts, passed through the historic Hatfield House Park. It was in support of two popular Welwyn Garden City based charities:  Isabel Hospice, which provides specialist end-of-life care, free of charge and Hertfordshire Action On Disability (HAD) which helps older and disabled people.

One of the runners in the 10k event and patron of both charities was Welwyn Hatfield MP Grant Shapps who completed the course in just over an hour – narrowly being beaten by his wife Belinda.

After crossing the finish line, Grant said “Running around the lovely Hatfield House was a great way of supporting two charities close to my heart. As patron of both Isabel Hospice and Hertfordshire On Disability, I know just how impressive the work is that they do and the enormous help and support that they provide to people in our community.

“Congratulations to Race Director Gary O’Leary and his team for organising a fantastic morning of races. I am already looking forward to next year.”

Gary O’Leary commented, “It was a pleasure putting on this first Half Marathon & 10K event at Hatfield House. Although the weather turned against us, with some torrential rain at times, 406 cheerful runners and 25 brilliant volunteers made it a fantastic morning, raising significant amounts for both local charities”