10k History

The CPM Thame 10km race found its roots back in the 1980s. Initially there was an annual Thame Road Race of approximately 6 miles (two loops of the path/road to Moreton from the Leisure Centre) which was part of the Thame Festival of Sports. In 1984 the Thame Boys Brigade wanted to organise a 10km race as a fund-raiser for their expedition to the Cook Islands, with the help of the newly (1983) formed Thame Runners. The following year Thame Runners took over the running of this annual race and have done so since. In the early days, Angus Fire helped sponsor the race but in 1994, CPM took over as main sponsor and have supported the race since. Thame Runners have kept the charity nature of the event since inception and annually allocate all profits to local Thame based charities. To date some £80,000 has been allocated to good causes in the area. The course used to run through Thame High Street to Towersey’s Windmill Road and back along the Risborough Road via the High Street to the playing fields at Lord Williams’s School next to the Thame Leisure Centre. However, with increased traffic and Sunday store openings, the route was changed to have the return make use of the traffic-free Sustrans Phoenix Trail, which was opened around the turn of the century. Gradually the number of entrants increased from a few hundred to over 1000. Based on advice from both the police and Athletics Association officials, it was decided to the cap entry at the 1000 level. As such, the race – always held on the last Sunday in June – regularly sells out by early June.
The feedback on the race is highly positive with many appreciating the relatively flat course (nearly half traffic-free), enthusiastic marshals, and a pleasant urban/rural mix of a route going through the historic market town centre of Thame and surrounding countryside.