Mendip Hills Fund receives its single largest donation

Thursday 29th August 2019

c.TACH Jim Hardcastle, manager of the Mendip Hills AONB, explaining how the donation to the Mendip Hills Fund is used to help projects in the area.

The Mendip Hills Fund has received an amazing donation of £3100 from the organisers of the Butcombe Trail Ultramarathon. This exceeds their donation from last year and is now the single largest donation to the fund.

Runners on this years event in April had to battle through very windy conditions, with the winner completing it in 8:06:20. The Butcombe Trail Ultramarathon is based on the Butcombe Trail walk, a 50-mile route or the new 56-mile route, around six Butcombe Brewery pubs in the Mendip Hills, which is a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB). The race is mostly off-road and takes in some beautiful running country and fantastic views as it criss-crosses the Mendips. 110 runners entered this years’ event. The race is now achieving national recognition and is worth 3 qualifying points for the Ultra Trail du Mont Blanc (UTMB), one of the world’s most prestigious races.

The Mendip Hills Fund awards grants to local projects that benefit the environment or communities of the area. So far it has awarded over £25,000 to a range of projects. Funds are raised from tourism, businesses and events, such as the Butcombe Trail Ultramarathon that use the area who wish to give something back to this very special part of the countryside. Read more about the work of the Mendip Hills Fund here.

Matt Claydon, race director from the Town and Country Harriers who organised the ultramarathon, presented the cheque to Phil Smith, vice-chair of the Mendip Hills Fund. Matt said, ‘The Mendip Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty provide an amazing backdrop for our race and we know the runners love the tough route with iconic views. It’s great that we can help a wide range of community groups look after this area through our donation.’