The Race Organiser : City Scramble UK
Find out more about our COVID-secure, contact-free event plans and how upcoming events are affected

City Scramble UK

Entry for the 12 December 2020 event has now closed.

Run the best seasonal sights of your city • Collect the Christmas clues • Find the festive finish line

This is your chance to go DASHING THROUGH THE SNOW(less) streets in a festive frenzy to find a secret, seasonal finish line! With 5K or 10K route options in 19 different cities, including three central London options, YULE be able to choose a location close to home and refresh your running. 

Live, on Saturday 12 December, North Pole HQ will issue your clues by text and email to set you off to follow a Christmas star along our designed routes - maps (but no sleighs) provided. You'll pass by some of the most seasonal sights of your city, with regular spots to seek out letters or words from special clues. Your clues will form an anagram that you'll solve to reveal a location close by that you must reach to finish. But wait, there's MYRRH! Get a posed festive (s)ELFie and your Christmas miracle is complete. You're sparkling souvenir medal will follow in the post one week later. 

Perfect as a socially distanced activity with a run buddy - City Scramble Christmas Edition is THE Christmas Party solution for 2020! With numbers limited on each course to ensure no noticeable extra presence of runners on the streets, you'll need to get booked in before THERES SNOW ROOM AT THE INN. 

And yes, OF COURSE fancy dress is encouraged. DEER OH DEER.

City Scramble Christmas has 5K and 10K routes available in:

Swindon (5k only)
Bristol (10k only)
London City
Windsor (10k only)
London Southbank
London West End
Manchester (10k only)
Edinburgh (10k only)


City Scramble Christmas is supporting Shelter, who help millions of people every year struggling with bad housing or homelessness through their advice, support, and legal services. Shelter campaign to make sure that, one day, no one will have to turn to them for help. 


Sounds good! What else do I need to know?


With a 5K or 10K route available in each of the City Scramble Christmas locations, each route has a strictly limited number of places. You can start any time between 09:00 and 12:00 on Saturday 12 December, you'll be running solo, with people you live with or socially distanced with a running buddy. 


You'll get your clues by text message at 09:00 on the morning of the event. Your circular route will have between 6-10 clue spots, followed by a final finish location. Finish by 13:00.


Time your run using a watch or mobile app to get your result on the official results page and to get your City Scramble Christmas medal in the post. 


Share your progress throughout your run using #CityScrambleChristmas and text North Pole HQ if you need a hand to be sure of your next move.


City Scramble Christmas is a carefully planned concept to allow runners to be part of an organised event whilst maintaining all of the social distancing and safety measures you’d take on a regular solo run. If you have any questions, check out the details and FAQs here first and if there's anything missing, get in touch. Please be patient - most of our team are still furloughed.


Tell me more! Answers to all of the Frequently Asked Questions


Is this an organised event with a mass start like typical events from The Race Organiser?

No, absolutely not. Our responsibility for participant and public safety means that we're not holding any events where groups of people will participate together. This event has been planned with all public health guidance in mind, but in response to many runners who have been in touch with us to see if there are ways we can help motivate and inspire their running during COVID-19 restrictions. 


City Scramble Christmas requires all runners to observe all physical distancing rules and health advice, with no timed start, finish or requirement to gather anywhere on run routes. Participant numbers are strictly limited to ensure no noticeable presence of additional runners on the streets nor at the secret finish points. If your home city is sold out, consider running in a neighbouring city if it's within reach.


Where do we run?

Choose from any one of the 19 UK towns and cities – either the one you live in, or any that you can get to easily on foot, by bicycle or by car. Each borough and route has a set of 6-10 clue spots that you must connect with your run. 


With our recommended routes, we’ve worked out the shortest and fastest possible distance between the clue spots in each borough. All routes are complete loops with no official start point, so you can pick up the route wherever is convenient. The all-important final black coloured clue pin is always the closest to the finish location, so you can plan strategically to finish with the shortest distance.


Routes will cover a combination of city centre and inner suburbs to get you a quieter, enjoyable run route with interesting clue spots to find. The name of each location indicates the areas the provisional route will cover. Once entered, your final map will be issued by email on Monday 7 December. If you need more details before then, just get in touch.


On the streets, routes will be unmarked - without signage or marshals, you should ensure you are able to access your route map throughout your run.


You can take a scenic route going any way you like, as long as you hit all of the clue spots and complete a loop between the start and finish, before reaching the secret finish point. 


Routes that do not go by all clue spots and reach the secret finish point will not eligible for the official results board.

Who can we run with?

Run solo, with members of the same household or genuinely and safely socially distanced with a running buddy.


When do we start?

You can start any time between 09:00 - 12:00 on the day and have to complete your route before 13:00. You can submit your run to the results platform once you've got back home and recovered. Submit anytime from 09:00 Saturday to 09:00 Monday. Details of how to submit your result will be given in your information email on Monday 7 December. 


When do we get the clues?

Clues for each route will be sent by text to your phone at 09:00 on race day. You will need a smartphone to be able to view your clues. North Pole HQ will be available to help if you are struggling to find any of the locations or clues on the day - details of how you can communicate on the day will sent in your final instructions email on Monday 7 December . Each clue will only be solvable by reaching the clue spot. 


When do we get the medal?

Medals will be posted out shortly after the event to the address you provide at registration.