If you’ve managed to navigate your local supermarket-of-a-certain-brand without being overcome by a sea of red sweatbands, goggles and air fresheners, congratulations. You may be the only Londoner left standing who doesn’t know that Sport Relief is coming. Allow us to enlighten you.
Out West at sporting mecca Wembley, football legends Robbie Savage and Alan Shearer took part in The Battle of The Backsides, whilst Davina McCall completed a 500 mile journey from Edinburgh, ending in London. Now these celebs have handed the baton over to us Londoners to do our bit. Whilst we don’t profess to being particularly sporty, we do love anything that’s for charity, so we found out how we can get involved.
The Big One
The Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park will be hosting one of the biggest events since the Olympics. While the Park doesn’t officially open its gates to the public until next month, swimmers, cyclists, runners, and all round fitness beans will be gathering there 21-23 March to undertake their sponsored Sport Relief challenges. If you’re feeling motivated, it’s not too late to sign up, and if the thought of swimming in The Actual Olympic Pool doesn’t twist your arm, we don’t know what will. You can run, cycle or swim various distances, depending how
crazy energetic you’re feeling. From running one mile to cycling 50 of them, there are events taking place from Edmonton to Tooting Bec.
For the whole week leading up to the event, Canary Wharf is encouraging us to try out a new sport while raising money for the Sport Relief pot. Attend a basketball session with London Lions, take part in a dragon boat race or learn House Dance or Zumba with Reebok. Walks along the themes of the art, architecture, history and nature of the Canary Wharf area are also happening. Some events require pre-registration, others you can just turn up for. Minimum donation of £2 per event. See the full programme (PDF). Kerb Street Food will also be in situ supporting the Sport Relief events at Canary Wharf from 20-22 March.
If this all sounds like too much hard work, the flagship television programme is on the BBC on Friday 21 March, broadcasting from The Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. We can’t wait to see David Peckham, sorry, Beckham, make a cameo in the Only Fools And Horses reunion. Paralympic athletes will be glitzing up to compete in Dancing On Ice, and footage of celebrity challenges, including Davina McCall’s infamous Beyond Breaking Point challenge will be shown. Davina, Londonist bows down to you.
Sport Relief uses the money it raises to help disadvantaged people in the UK and around the world, for example by providing vaccinations and education, and helping support victims of domestic abuse. You can donate to this worthy cause on the website.