CASSOCKS will not be first choice for many runners taking part in the Shakespeare Half Marathon this weekend.
But a team from Stratford’s Holy Trinity Church choir will be on the starting line in them for the race – for the first mile at least.
The team, which includes director of music Benedict Wilson, together with choristers and parents of junior choir members, will be raising money for the choir’s summer tour.
And as they plan to run the first mile in cassocks they are all hoping the weather will not be a repeat of the heat that marked the London Marathon or that which Stratford enjoyed over the bank holiday weekend.
The tour will take 45 singers, aged between eight and 70, to the Netherlands for performances in Amsterdam, Dordrecht, Leiden, Zoetermeer, and kicking off with Wonderfeel – a jazz and classical cross-over festival.
The half marathon is part of a fundraising effort that includes sales of a cookbook, the sponsor a chorister programme, a barn dance in May and culminates in July with a concert at Holy Trinity.
Benedict said: “The half marathon will be a real challenge for the team, but we are doing it to enable as many choir members as possible to be included in the tour.
“The benefits to the choir of the tour are immediately tangible, not just through bonding as a team, but musical improvement. For the children it represents a real opportunity to sing in some amazing places, although they will work hard.”