A RUNNING business in York is encouraging people to take part in a new festive trail race in York next month for charity.

See York Run York was set up last year by Joni Southall and initially just provided running tours of York, taking in the historic sights, cobbled streets and stunning gardens of the city. It has already held two themed running races this year - the Chocolate 10km on July 23 and the Gunpowder Plot 10km on November 5.

Now Joni is organising the first Yuletide Trail run, on December 9, with the help of her father, Gary Wade.

Starting at Rawcliffe Country Park, the five-mile course is a two-lap route across fields, through woods and alongside the River Ouse.

All profit from this event will be donated to the Brathay Trust, which aims to improve the life chances of children, young people and their families by inspiring them to engage positively in their communities.

Joni said: "My dad and I are running the 10 in 10 marathon challenge in Ambleside, Cumbria, next May, raising funds for the Brathay Trust, and the Yuletide Trail is part of our fundraising efforts.

"The Brathay Trust is a charity close to our hearts. My dad has run the Brathay Windermere marathon every year and we have got to know the team behind the events and follow the work that they do.

"To be the first father/daughter duo to complete the marathon challenge would be amazing.”

The Yuletide Trail course is suitable for first time trail runners and club runners alike, Joni added.

She said the Chocolate 10km and Gunpowder Plot 10km both proved successful, attracting 200 and 270 runners respectively.

Both events took place on York Knavesmire.

"These initial events were not for charity but just a new business idea," Joni explained.

"I am a runner myself and wanted to put on low key, friendly running events for local runners as an introduction to the racing environment.

"My dad and the rest of my family support me with these events and help me out on the day of the races with setting up, marshalling, timing etc.”

See York Run York has more running events planned for next year. The Bloodaxe Challenge will be held on February 11 and celebrates York's Viking heritage.

There will also be an event at Elvington airfield on April 1 to mark 100 years of the RAF.

Seasonal fancy dress is encouraged but is not compulsory for the Yuletide Trail race, which starts at 11am, on December 9. A prize for the best fancy dressed runner has been donated by Indigo Hotel York, which is a meal for two at its No 88 Walmgate restaurant.

Visit https://www.seeyorkrunyork.co.uk/events if you would like to take part.