ORGANISERS of the Black Country Road Run are appealing for sponsors and runners to donate fees to Russell Halls Hospital as it cares for patients hit by coronavirus.

The annual 10k run organised by Halesowen and Rowley Regis Rotary Club raises tens of thousands of pounds for charity and attracts hordes of runners and spectators to Halesowen town centre.

It was set to take place on July 5 - but organisers have cancelled the event due to the coronavirus crisis in what would have been in its ninth year.

They are offering refunds to runners who had already registered and sponsors who have given money - but are also giving them the option to consider donating monies to the rotary club which is making a donation to the Critical Care Unit at Russells Hall hospital - which is on the frontline of the fight against coronavirus in the borough.

To date there have been eleven coronavirus related deaths in Dudley.

All were patients with underlying health conditions.

A spokesman for Halesowen and Rowley Regis rotary club said: "We believe that this extra funding will give valuable help to provide critical care for those most in need during these most difficult times.

"We're delighted to announce that many runners have already kindly confirmed to donate their fees and some of our corporate sponsors have also agreed to support this very worthy cause.

"We have set a deadline of the 31st March for runners to confirm what they prefer to do and very soon after that date we will be publicly announcing the total of our donation to Russells Hall Hospital.

"Should any runners who were intending to take part in this year’s run and would also like to offer their support or members of the public who would like to donate - let us know by sending an email to

"Thank you to all of our runners and our wonderful corporate sponsors for your kind donations so far - The Big Pet Store, CSCM IT Solutions and Sandvik."

Entry costs £18 for the 10k race, £4 for children and £22 for families taking part in the shorter fun run.

Rotarian Alan Bowler said the rotary club had spent several thousands of pounds ordering hundreds of medals with 2020 on them.

He said: "We will have to absorb that cost as we are not rescheduling the run for later this year.

"Hopefully it will be back next year, but we haven't had a club decision yet - we just don't know what the future holds.

"A lot of these runs are done by businesses - but we are all volunteers and any profit goes to charity.

"By asking people to donate to the hospital we are trying to get something good out of a bad situation.

"Every penny which is donated will go to the hospital."

West Midlands Mayor Andy Street and local hero ‘Blind Dave’ Heeley were amongst more than a thousand runners who descended on Halesowen at last year's run.