Royal Run


Today, the bank holiday Monday, was the day of the Royal Run. The Crown Prince and all his family ran. It was only the second year for the event but this year, held in four cities, 82,000 people ran either a mile or a 10 kilometre course. In Copenhagen, that longer run was from the centre of the city out to Frederiksberg and back.

The organisation in Copenhagen was amazing because a huge part of the centre was cleared of traffic and barriers had to be set up along the course to keep back the crowds who were watching and cheering on the runners. At busy points there were even temporary bridges over roads, constructed in scaffolding, to take pedestrians up and over the course.

Before the start, runners were marshalled in the streets around Sankt Annæ Plads before entering their race by crossing over the bridge at the centre of Nyhavn and setting off by running through the temporary arch of a starting gate. With so many runners, the start was staggered over several hours but runners waited patiently and with very obvious good humour.

The Royal Run has nothing to do with architecture or design but it certainly has a lot to do with city planning and with a positive and flexible attitude by city councils who have to licence and provide the infrastructure and facilities for such a hugely-popular public event.

This was all about encouraging people to participate and if they do not run already, then to encourage them to take up running for a healthier life and it needed a phenomenal amount of planning and organisation by the city to make the event such a success.