THE annual Bude Lifeboat Run and Junior Run on Wednesday evening June 12 raised an incredible £7,000 for the RNLI with 500 adult runners and a further 253 children entering the event.

Organised by Bude RNLI fundraisers, in partnership with local running club, Bude RATs (Run and Tri), this RNLI fundraising event comprises a 6.5-mile multi-terrain senior race and two one-mile junior races.

The start of the senior race.
The start of the senior race. (Bude Lifeboat Run)

With almost ideal weather conditions, competition was fierce but friendly and the evening was thoroughly enjoyed by all. 

The main sponsor, Bott Ltd, along with organisers, volunteers, supporters and spectators watched not only the strongly contested races but also runners battling to beat their own PBs.

The two junior competitions set off in waves, based on school years, to run the one-mile course following a safe route along Bude's cycleways and canal towpath.

This year's junior run winners for school year 7 and Above were Adam of Okehampton College in a time of five minutes and 45 seconds and Eleanor of Launceston College in a time of 6:24.

The winners in our youngest category, school Year 1 and Under, were Riley of Bradworthy Primary Academy in a time of 8:17 and Lucy of Whitstone Primary School in a time of 9:41. All children who took part in the junior races were awarded a well-deserved medal and a set of four RNLI cloth badges for their efforts. 

In total, 43 schools were represented in the junior race and the much sought after School's Trophy, donated by Bude Rats (Run and Tri), was won by Kilkhampton Junior and Infant School, with 16% of pupils taking part.

The 500 entrants of the Senior race, part of the Cornish Multi-Terrain Race Series, ran a 6.5-mile single lap route venturing over the hilly, cross country footpaths of the Whalesborough estate and the flat canal towpath and cycleway.

Spectators cheered as the race was won for the second year running by local Bude runner Joshua Benford of Bideford AAC in 34:32. 

Joshua Benford.
Joshua Benford receiving his winner's trophy. (Bude Lifeboat Run)

Some two minutes behind was Steve Reynolds of Truro Running Club (36:15) with James Pugsley of Bideford AAC in third. 

The ladies’ race winner was holidaymaker Jennifer Badger of Prestwich AC with a time of 42:07, with Lucy Longbottom of Truro Running Club second (43:03) and Stacie Tregonning of St Austell Athletes Running Club taking third place in a time of (44:57). 

The first three winning runners in both the male and female categories were presented with RNLI trophies. 

Lidl donated cakes for all the Senior prize winners. Both male and female team prizes, sponsored by HPT Sport, were awarded to Bideford AAC, the male team comprising of Joshua Benford, James Pugsley, Keith Shapland and John O’Donoghue and the ladies winning team Davina Brown, Lynsey Newcombe, Jane Cann and Helen Colwill.

An event spokesperson said: “We are very grateful to have tremendous support for this event from local businesses.

“Bott Ltd has been the event's main sponsor for a fourth year and in addition have supplied a baggage trailer for kit storage and a transportation vehicle.”

A spokesperson for Bott Ltd said: “We are passionate about community support and working with charitable organisations from around the local area of our various sites. With our manufacturing site being situated in Bude, our employees and their families rely on the RNLI to provide their service, keeping our community safe in local waters. We are proud to have supported the Bude Lifeboat Run once again, especially in this significant year marking the 200th anniversary of the RNLI. What a great event!”

The event would also like to thank to Whalesborough for land access and Bude Rugby Club for the idyllic Race HQ setting, and all other local businesses who helped make it such a success.

Bude Lifeboat Run is very proud of the fact that the competition is a run for all. 

Our youngest competitor this year was Keira at just two years and 11 months old and at 79, Derek Pearse was again our oldest competitor. 

If you would like to take part next year for the race on June 11 2025, entries will open on March 1 and you can opt-in to receive Bude Lifeboat Run information and be sent a reminder in advance by emailing [email protected].