Half Marathon
Sun 18 May 2025 Chester, Cheshire, UK

Essar Chester Half Marathon

One of the UK’s longest established and most highly regarded half marathons, starting and finishing in this historic Roman/Medieval city. Come and celebrate over 40 years of running in Chester!

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  • Sun 18 May 2025
Chester Racecourse, Chester > Chester Town Hall, Chester

Half Marathon



Age 17 & over

  • 13.1 miles road running


Whatever your reason for running, you'll be supported all the way to achieve half marathon greatness!

All abilities, ages and speeds are welcome in the award winning, Essar Chester Half Marathon. 2025 marks the 43rd edition of this historic race!

It’s the second event of the Chester Triple Series (for an extra challenge medal) and the event will host the England Athletics and Welsh Athletics Age Group Masters Half Marathon Championship too.

Runners will enjoy a combination of city centre sights and rural villages on a fast and largely flat route which will be run entirely on closed roads, combined with friendliness and personal touches which are unique to this event series. A Fun Run makes the day exciting and inclusive for all abilities!


  • Well-established half marathon for over 40 years
  • From the organisers of the UK's Best Marathon Up to 5,000 Runners (2018, 2019, 2020)
  • Stunning city centre start and finish
  • England Athletics and Welsh Athletics Age Group Masters Half Marathon Championship qualifier
  • Run in the city and countryside on closed roads
  • Fun Run on the same day aimed at primary school children
  • Part of the Chester Triple series for an extra challenge medal
  • Free, monthly, paced training runs and training seminars

Join in on what is always an amazing day!

This event is part of Essar Chester Half Marathon and Fun Run.

Event video

Event details

  • All fitness levels
  • Event village
  • Families
  • Fancy dress
  • Newcomers
  • Spectators
  • Traders at event

  • Bag storage
  • Entertainment
  • Music
  • Paid parking
  • Rural
  • Toilets
  • Urban

Event HQ

Chester Racecourse

Chester is a destination city in its own right, with lots to do. There is fantastic shopping with superior high-street stores and boutiques. Enjoy a taste of history walking round the famous Roman walls, visiting the Roman amphitheatre and seeing the unique Rows (dating from Medieval times). Combine sightseeing and spectating with a stroll along the River Dee. There are numerous restaurants, pubs and delicatessens to suit all tastes. All this in easy walking distance. If you want to venture just outside the city, look out for Chester Zoo, the Blue Planet Aquarium or the Cheshire Oaks outlet village.

  • Cut off time
  • Distance markers
  • Entertainment
  • First aid
  • Food stations
  • Marshals
  • Mass start
  • PB
  • Point to point
  • Single start
  • Sweeper
  • Toilets
  • Traffic free
  • Undulating
  • Water stations

Route highlights

  • Chester Racecourse
  • Watergate Street, through the historic City Walls
  • City centre historic landmarks
  • Garden Quarter
  • Parkgate Road, into the countryside
  • Little Mollington Hall
  • Roman road in picturesque Mollington village
  • Saughall village
  • Back to the Garden Quarter towards the finish
  • Town Hall
  • Chester Cathedral

Route description

The Chester Half Marathon offers one of the flattest routes in many years, with a spectacular city centre finish. You will run past some of Chester's historic landmarks at the very start of the race too.

The route starts at Chester Racecourse, heading up Watergate Street, through the Walls and the historic centre of Chester. Runners will leave the city through the Garden Quarter before heading out into the countryside on Parkgate Road.

Just after Little Mollington Hall you turn onto the roman road into the picturesque villages of Mollington and Lea by Backford. The route then continues up Parkgate Road and turns left to loop round part of Saughall village. Returning on Parkgate Road, you run in to the finish via the Garden Quarter.

The finish in the City Centre outside the Town Hall and Cathedral provides an inspiring setting with cheering crowds of welcoming spectators.

City and countryside on closed roads.

  • Public transport links

Green Runner option

Why not enter as a Green Runner?

You wouldn't receive a finisher's medal, t-shirt or goody bag - instead, the cost of these items would be donated to the official race charity which is the West Cheshire Foodbank.

You'd help reduce waste and support the local race charity at the same time!

  • Cash prizes
  • Certificate
  • Chip timing
  • Goody bag
  • iTAB
  • Map
  • Massage
  • Medal
  • Pre-event training sessions
  • Race photo
  • Technical t-shirt
  • Training plan

Before race day

  • Access to training plans to support your running journey
  • Support and advice, including free webinars and training runs to keep you motivated
  • Your personalised race pack including your race number and timing chip sent to you in the post (runners from outside the UK need to collect their race numbers from the Help Desk on race weekend)
  • Exclusive offers and competitions from sponsors right from the moment you sign up
  • Access to our friendly and supportive social community on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, who are happy to answer any of your running queries 
  • FREE runner to runner transfers - should you no longer be able to take part

On race day

You'll experience all the fitness and mental health benefits associated with running, plus you'll get:

  • A quality technical T-shirt, bespoke medal and a goody bag packed with post-race nutrition when you finish, OR, the option to become a Green Runner and instead of receiving your medal, T-shirt and goody bag, the cost of these will go to the official race charity
  • A fantastic atmosphere as the England Athletics Age Group Masters Championships is hosted
  • Prizes awarded for the top three men and women and the winners of each age group
  • Access to runners Help Desk for any last-minute queries or transfers
  • A safe running environment 
  • On course hydration and nutrition for refuelling 
  • Lots of medical support throughout the course should you need assistance
  • Access to the tracking website so all your supporters can track your live progress

  • Age 17 & over
  • Entries open
  • Charity entries closed
  • Collect race pack
  • Enter online
  • Event merch available
  • Insurance available
  • Race pack by post
  • Series discount
Enter now

The Chester Triple

Run the MBNA Chester 10K, the Essar Chester Half Marathon and either the MBNA Chester Marathon or Metric Marathon and you'll receive a fantastic Chester Triple Medal.

Entry fees

Entry fee (Unaffiliated)


Valid to 11/05/2025

Entry fee (Affiliated)


Valid to 11/05/2025

Entry fee


Valid from 12/05/2025

My third Chester half marathon, working towards the coveted tripe medal. A special hoodie this year for the 40th anniversary. A great start heading out of the racecourse. Always a well-organised race with great support in and around Chester. Sarah H

2022 was my first time taking part in the Chester Half Marathon and I thoroughly enjoyed it. The course was great and support around all of the course was fantastic. When you get to the last corner before seeing the finish line the roar you hear was the perfect tonic to help that sprint finish and helped me knock 2mins off my previous PB. I look forward to the last part of my Chester Triple in October. Jason A

A fab event with elements through historic Chester walls, some testing hills towards the finish and a wonderful finish by Chester Cathedral. Peter M

This was my first half marathon and it didn’t disappoint! A great route beginning and ending in the scenic city centre, with a couple of loops out in the green city outskirts in between, makes for a cracking race. Definitely one with PB potential too! Danny C

Brilliant course, fab detailed pre-race info, good quality t-shirt and a brilliant medal - I'll definitely be back! Danielle C

They cannot be faulted for their organisation of events. Quality t-shirt, quality medal and goodie bag. I’ve done several ESSAR marathon and half marathon events and I will always come back. Amy B

This Event brilliantly organised from the time you Enter to the time you crossed the finishing line. Chester has a great setup for Communicating with all entrants they even do several live webinars to give you all the help and information you need, this race put on by runners for runners. Maurice H

Reviews thanks to RaceCheck