NEIGHBOURS brought the spirit of the London Marathon to their Hartford cul-de-sac at the weekend as 13 families ran a combined 175 miles.

Residents in Sandfield Lane took part in a 'social distancing ultramarathon' on Saturday and Sunday, the day the London Marathon was due to take place before it was cancelled due to coronavirus.

The families completed the effort by running up and down their 0.1 mile lane as neighbours cheered them on from their driveways.

Keen to push the boundaries, the participants even took on 1,000 press-ups, and there is now talk of the event becoming an annual fixture in Hartford's diary.

"It all happened really quickly," said Jo Parker, one of the residents who took part.

"We suggested we get together to do a bit of a run because the London Marathon got cancelled last Tuesday on our cul-de-sac's WhatsApp group.

"I knew there were a few people in the street that run, but it was meant as a joke really. Then people messaged back saying it was a really good idea."

Residents of all ages took part in the event – from the youngest at four years old, to the oldest at 72.

Each family had a one-hour timeslot that allowed them to maintain social distancing.

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The original idea was for the community to run a combined marathon distance of 26 miles, but as the event unfolded each family wanted to see how far they could go in their allotted hour.

"There was a brilliant carnival atmosphere," added Jo.

"It turned into a fantastic weekend. I don't think when we came up with the idea that anyone realised how much fun it would turn out to be.

"The weather was lovely and sunny too, which helped.

"We had bunting, beer and lots of celebration and camaraderie whilst still being able to maintain social distancing."