Great North Run 2020 WE'RE starting the New Year by giving supporters a chance to sign up for one of the North-East’s biggest sporting events. This September will mark 40 years of the Great North Run, a milestone that coincides with our own exciting 40th anniversary" The public ballot for places in the popular half-marathon opened earlier this month, and we hope as many of our supporters as possible will take part during this shared ruby anniversary year. Sophie Clarke, from our fundraising team, said: If you’ve made a New Year’s resolution to get fit, having a goal to aim for is a fantastic motivator, and the finishing the Great North Run is a brilliant ambition. Everyone at NEAS is very excited to share our 40th anniversary year with the Great North Run. It’s an iconic North-East event, and as a leading North-East charity, NEAS is the perfect choice for anyone wanting to use their run to do some good. Supporters have until Sunday, February 9, to enter the Great North Run Public Ballot, and successful applicants will be notified within a week if they are lucky enough to win a place. Sophie said: The Great North Run is a very popular event, so competition for places is fierce. If you’re unlucky in the public ballot, please get in touch with us. We have a limited number of charity places available for any runners who are unsuccessful securing a place in the public ballot. These are available on a first-come, first-served basis, so don’t hesitate to give us a ring. Charity places cost £50 each, and runners are asked to try to raise an ambitious £400 each – a tenner for each year NEAS has been there to support North-East families. For more information on running the Great North Run for the North East Autism Society, click here. We are also inviting runners to take part in a much messier, muddier running challenge earlier in the year – the Mad March Mare. Participants in this hilarious, muddy 10km course will battle wind, water, and mud, and tackle 35 obstacles to make it over the finish line at Hexham Racecourse. NEAS has a limited number of places available for this event on Saturday, February 29. Anyone interested in taking part in the Great North Run or in the Mad March Mare in aid of NEAS is asked to contact Sophie Clarke on 01914 109 974. For a full calendar of NEAS events in 2020, click here.