Great Birmingham Run scores a hat-trick!

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Villa, Blues and West Brom sign up for the AJ Bell Great Birmingham Run

They may be fierce rivals when they meet on the pitch but when it comes to supporting grassroots sports projects and nurturing the next generation of football stars, Aston Villa, Birmingham City and West Bromwich Albion stand united.

With a month to go before the AJ Bell Great Birmingham Run hits the streets of the city on Sunday, 5 May, the three football clubs are on a mission to encourage fans to take part to fundraise for their community foundations.

Villa, Blues and West Brom are calling on their supporters to support their club’s local schemes by tackling the Great Birmingham Run 10k or half marathon as part of each club’s running teams, with the incentive of special-edition running T-shirts and vests to wear on the big day.

Launching the foundations’ call to fans near the Great Birmingham Run start line at Centenary Square, were former Villa star Nathan Baker and AVFC Foundation Ambassador Katharine Merry, former Blues star Roger Johnson for the Birmingham City Foundation plus West Bromwich Albion mascot Baggie Bird with club legend Ally Robertson and charity fundraiser Blind Dave Heeley.

It is the first time the big three clubs have committed to take on the annual event with such large numbers and the clubs hope to see hundreds of fans wearing their team colours with pride on Broad Street.

From Christmas gift campaigns and wellbeing workshops to school coaching sessions and chances to meet their heroes, the three clubs’ projects support a variety of schemes and projects in all areas of the West Midlands and directly help those who need it most.

Here’s how you can get involved and support your team at the Great Birmingham Run:

The Aston Villa Foundation

The Aston Villa Foundation is delighted to once again have runners representing the charity in the Great Birmingham Run, raising vital money for the Foundation’s wide variety projects in health and wellbeing, education, and young people.

Funds raised from the event will directly impact the local people in communities in the vicinity of Villa Park.

The Foundation works closely with partners from a variety of backgrounds in Birmingham as well as supporting the wider ‘Aston Villa family’ to reflect the charity’s mission statement of ‘Working Together to Enrich Lives’.

The Aston Villa Foundation is pleased to be joining our counterparts from The Albion Foundation and Birmingham City Foundation in taking part in the event. Previous runners include Olympic Bronze Medallist and Aston Villa Foundation Ambassador, Katharine Merry, who said: “Whether you are running for yourself, for charity, by yourself or in a team, nothing beats running around the second city! It’s a fabulous course with amazing support.

“Having taken on the Great Birmingham Run twice for the Aston Villa Foundation, each time I have been blown away by the support. It’s such an amazing feeling running round the roads of Brum… a superb day. Come and join the fun!”

Spaces are still available to sign up on behalf of the Aston Villa Foundation, where you will receive a sponsored entry for the event, and a goody bag with Aston Villa merchandise.

It is all about having fun, so invite your friends and family to attend in their Claret and Blue to show their support!

Click  here to find out more, or follow on social media at @AVFCFoundation to keep up to date with the latest Foundation news.

The Birmingham City Foundation

The Birmingham City Foundation is calling for supporters to represent Blues in this year’s Great Birmingham Run, to help fund its community engagement programmes.

The Foundation will be covering the entry cost for the 10k run, as well as providing a limited-edition UNDEFEATED x Nike running vest for the first 200 supporters who reach £150 in donations.

The recently relaunched Birmingham City Foundation has already delivered one of the city’s biggest-ever Christmas gifting campaigns, and has recently supplied more than 3,000 match tickets to underprivileged children.

Funds raised through the Great Birmingham Run will go towards expanding the Foundation’s work to provide football for young people with limited access to sport. To represent Blues at the Great Birmingham Run, sign up to be part of the Foundation and the club will contact each team member with their entry pack information and UNDEFEATED running vest requirements once they reach £150 in donations.

Executive Vice-President of the Foundation, Jeremy Dale, said: “We have a fanbase of loyal, generous and talented supporters, and we need them to represent the club at the Great Birmingham Run.

“The funds they will raise will be integral in providing free football provisions to young people who might not be able to pay to play at their local club. We want football to be accessible to everyone.”

Spaces are still available to run for the Birmingham City Foundation at the Great Birmingham Run. Click here to sign up.

The Albion Foundation

The Albion Foundation is delighted to be participating in The Great Birmingham Run this year for the first time. Its aim is to raise vital funds that will then be put back into supporting activities within the local community and the people within it, in line with the foundation’s ‘Go Local’ strategy.

The Albion Foundation’s work has been recognised recently by the EFL and has been awarded EFL Championship Community Club of the Season. Judges were impressed by the approach to addressing key issues through projects like ‘Go Local’ offering midnight sessions throughout Ramadan and a rehabilitation scheme for stroke survivors.

Jonathan Ward, Deputy Director, the Albion Foundation, said: “We are delighted to be teaming up with the Great Birmingham Run alongside our 30 fantastic fundraisers on Sunday 5th May.

“This is a fantastic opportunity for everyone to come together for a wonderful event whilst raising crucial funds for our local community. We’ve been taken aback by the uptake and support we have received by our fan base regarding the run which is still growing daily.

“We were delighted to hear that we are one of three local clubs taking part in the run this year and we wish everyone the very best of luck at Aston Villa and Birmingham City.”

The Albion Foundation is covering the cost of either the 10k or half marathon and ask that runners raise a minimum £100. In addition to this runners will be given a T-shirt for the run. It’s not too late to take the plunge and sign up. For more information take a look here or email:

With just a month to go, now is the perfect time to sign up for the Great Birmingham Run 10k or half marathon.

See the event page here for more information or to sign up.