Disability Entry and Accessibility

Disability Entry and Accessibility

R4W is committed to being as inclusive as possible and welcomes athletes with health issues, disabilities or accessibility needs. This page summarises everything you need to know about our events, the entry process, cut-off times, course profiles and the support we can offer.

We are constantly striving to improve our offering and your experience, so please share any suggestions or improvements that can be made to make our events more accessible by contacting us at enquiries@run4wales.org.

An image of a blind athlete with a guide runner at the Cardiff Bay 10K

Entry Process

We encourage all participants unsure of their fitness levels to undergo a health check with their doctor prior to training or taking part.

Wheelchair users or those with disabilities or any other health issues are able to register for our events via our standard registration forms available on our event websites.

Wheelchair Users (self-propelled)

Will be able to indicate whether they would like to start at the front of the race or within the main field on their registration form. We cannot guarantee your preference and it will depend on health and safety factors but we will do our best to accommodate. We will contact you closer to the event date to discuss this in more detail if necessary. If you are not a self-propelled wheelchair user you must take part with a supporter (see below).

Wheelchair Users (supported)

If you are a wheelchair user who requires an enabler for support during the race, we can provide them with a free entry. Please contact maria.waldron@run4wales.org to request this, stating the name of the event you wish to participate in. The supported athlete must reach the minimum age required to participate in the event. We can discuss with you in more detail whether it would be more suitable for you to start at the front of the race or within the main field, depending on the type of chair or any additional support you may require.

Blind Runners

If you are a blind athlete who needs the support of a guide runner, we are able to offer your guide a free space. Please contact maria.waldron@run4wales.org to request this, stating the name of the event you wish to participate in.

Autistic Runners

Runners and spectators who are autistic that are unsure about attending can contact us at enquiries@run4wales.org if they would like to know anything about the event prior to signing up.

Other Health Issues or Disabilities

If you have any other health issues, disabilities or additional learning needs we should be aware of, there is a section of the registration form where you can share details on any assistance you may require on the day. Feel free to contact us on enquiries@run4wales.org before signing up if you’d like to discuss in more detail beforehand.

Elite Wheelchair Athletes

Free spaces are available for elite wheelchair athletes in some events where they meet qualifying criteria. Contact alex.donald@run4wales.org for more information.

If you require any support registering using our online registration system, please contact us on enquiries@run4wales.org or call 02921 660 790. Our office hours are Monday-Friday, 9am – 5pm.

Cut Off Times & Age Requirements

Whilst we want our events to be accessible as possible, everyone taking part must abide by the event cut-off times (maximum permitted finish time). These cut-off times are linked to road closure timings and are in place to ensure the town or city hosting the event can be re-opened to ease the flow of traffic and to minimise disruption to impacted communities. We have reasonable cut-off times in place across our series of events: 6.5 hours (marathon), 4.5 hours (half marathon) and 2 hours (10K).

You must be 15 years of age to enter a 10K, 17 for the half marathon and 18 for the marathon. Our supporting Junior events (typically between 1 mile and 2K in distance) do not have cut-off times and there are no age limits (those under 8 must be accompanied by an adult).

Event Information and Course Profiles

Below you can find information about the course profile and accessibility of each of our events. If you would like more information about any of our races before signing up, please get in touch at enquiries@run4wales.org and we’ll be happy to answer any questions you may have or to talk through the event in more detail.


Cardiff Bay 10K

The race is largely flat and has had positive feedback from athletes with accessibility needs in previous years. Some potholes have been known on the course and there are some tight turns which can be more difficult for some wheelchair users. Please note there are no toilets on the route. The event is quite busy and well-supported which may be overwhelming for some. Access to the start and Event Village is by steps but there are wheelchair friendly access routes (which may take longer). There are ‘Changing Places‘ accessible toilets and changing facilities inside the nearby Wales Millennium Centre, located on the ground floor. The cut-off time is 2 hours.


Newport Wales Marathon & 10K

No obvious issues have been noted by athletes for the 10K race, but please be aware that there are speed bumps and tight bends on the marathon route. You should also note that the route is quite rural and exposed to nature and weather conditions. The Event Village, Park and Ride and Changing Areas are fully accessible. There is a ‘Changing Places‘ accessible facility located at the Friars Walk Shopping Centre in the 1st-floor lobby area. The cut-off for the marathon race is 6 hours 30 minutes and the 10K is 2 hours.


Porthcawl 10K

As is often the case by the seaside, there is an uneven surface on part of the route and sand on the path along the seafront. There are also numerous speed bumps and a few tight turns throughout. The Event Village is accessible and has accessible toilets. The cut-off is 2 hours.


Barry Island 10K

The 10K is a very undulating course with steep inclines. Please note that the Event Village is also situated on a hill. We reserve 42 free spaces in our Harbour Road car park for disabled badge holders, just five minutes from the start. There are ‘Changing Places‘ accessible facilities situated just behind Marco’s Cafe on the Western promenade. Beach wheelchairs and standard wheelchairs are stored here and are available to loan free of charge. The cut-off for this race is 2 hours.


Cardiff Half Marathon

Our flagship event with over 20,000 athletes taking part can make for an overwhelming experience for some. The route is predominately flat with a steep hill at 12 miles (Fairoak Road). There are ramps on the approach to Cardiff Bay (at around mile 6). Disabled parking and accessible toilets are available as well as an accessible event village. There are ‘Changing Places‘ accessible facilities situated inside the National Museum Cardiff (next to the Event Village), in the Oriel restaurant. The event has been tried and tested with positive feedback from athletes with accessibility needs. The cut-off for this race is 4 and a half hours.


Disabled Parking

Those taking part who require a free disabled parking space will be able to request this via the registration form. We will contact you closer to the event date to confirm arrangements. Where possible and if required, we can offer a convenient space near to the start/finish line to store your day chair if you are planning to use a racing wheelchair.

Testimonials

Below you will find some testimonials from athletes who have taken part in R4W events. If you would like to provide a testimonial for other disabled athletes, please get in touch on enquires@run4wales.org. Any insight or advice you have would be much appreciated and may help others considering attending a Run 4 Wales event.

I love the atmosphere of whizzing through our towns in a racing chair.”

The steep section on Fairoak Road at the Cardiff Half Marathon is on my limit – I can get up it, but very slowly.”

“I wanted to say a huge thank you, to you all your colleagues for the arrangements you made for us wheelchair athletes. being able to park close by the finish, and the other things you put in place worked very well, and made the event even more enjoyable.”

Ron Price – Wheelchair Athlete

The staff and volunteers at Run 4 Wales are very friendly.”

Les Hampton – Wheelchair Athlete

It has been a really great experience for Jonah and I. Starting before the elites with other wheelchair entrants and blind runners is much easier for us as when the masses get going they are able to see us and give us a wide berth. I think it would be too difficult amongst the crowds as Jonah wouldn’t cope with lots of people around him. He wears ear defenders.”

Everyone has been really helpful and I’m amazed at how supporting the running community has been. Our races with Run 4 Wales have been incredible and we look forward to many more, including our very first half marathon next year!”

Hayley Norris – Enabler for Son Jonah in an assisted wheelchair

Volunteering

Our events would not be possible without the support of the ‘Extra Milers’, our much-loved volunteers. We welcome volunteers from all walks of life, including those with disabilities or additional accessibility needs.

Click here to find out more about becoming an Extra Miler, or contact our Volunteer Coordinator on volunteers@run4wales.org if you have any questions.