Communities inspiring and entertaining Greater Manchester Marathon runners

The communities along the Greater Manchester Marathon route are gearing up to inspire and be inspired, with the race just over a week away.

Taking place on Sunday 28 April, the Greater Manchester Marathon organisers have been working closely with the local communities with the aim to get everyone involved and to provide a platform for businesses, churches and organisations to promote themselves and be visible to thousands of runners, spectators and supporters.

'The Community Spirit' initiative, which was launched last year, has also been incorporated into the race again, actively encouraging support for the event with a £3500 cash prize available for both 'Best Entertainment en route' and 'Best Supporting Community' as voted by the runners. There will be a varied range of entertainment en route to inspire and motivate the runners, some of which include:

Gorse Hill Studios, Gorse Hill (Km 7)

Sale Brass Band, Sale Cenotaph (Km 11)

The Brook, Brooklands Road (Km 13 & 25)

Brooklands Samba Band (Trafford Music Service), St John the Divine, Brooklands Road (Km 14 & 24)

Timperley Brass Band (Trafford Music Service), Timperley Methodist Church (Km 17 & Km 22)

Bloom Live, Regent Road, Altrincham (Km 19)

Altrincham Children's Choir, Market Street, Altrincham (Km 20)

The Manor House, Manor Avenue (Km 28)

Urmston and Stretford Wind Bands (Trafford Music Service), St Michael's, Flixton (Km 34)

Gorse Hill Studios, Gorse Hill (Km 40)

Staff from the Irwell Housing Association will also be cheering on the runners with the Tomahawks and a troupe of dancers at the Sale West estate, whilst 102 Capital FM will be providing the music in the race village and at the half way point in Altrincham.

The amazing crowd support was a big contributor to the success of last year's race, and the organisers are encouraging the locals to show their support for the runners by lining the streets of their communities whilst soaking up the inspirational atmosphere. The iconic Greater Manchester Marathon takes place on Sunday 28th April for the 37th time, starting and finishing near Manchester United Football Club in Old Trafford. It is the flattest marathon route in the UK with only 54m of elevation gain and one of the flattest in the world attracting PB chasers, beginners and elite runners alike.

A lot of runners will be raising money for charity, including the Christie, Cancer Research UK, Macmillan Cancer, Sue Ryder, British Red Cross, Marie Curie Cancer Care, Royal Manchester Children's Hospital Charity, Francis House Children=92s Hospice and Freedom from Torture.

Athletics legend Ron Hill MBE and Steve Kenyon, the quickest ever finisher of a Manchester Marathon, will be starting the race on 28 April. Ron Hill will then join the running crowds for the initial 8 miles, actively showing support for the marathon in his home town.

Sponsors of the Greater Manchester Marathon 2013 include Brooks Sports, Up & Running, Clif Bar and MLP Solicitors.

Go to www.greatermanchestermarathon.com for all race information, like the Facebook page www.facebook.com/GreaterManchesterMarathon and follow @Marathon_Mcr on Twitter.