London

London Marathon: Record number of runners take part

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Media captionThe Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry get the race under way

A record number of competitors have been taking part in the London Marathon.

Organisers said 40,382 people were on the gruelling 26.2-mile run, 1,242 more than last year's record high.

World records are being attempted by about 50 runners, including the fastest marathon in a sleeping bag and fastest marathon in Wellington boots.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge were joined by Prince Harry to start the elite men's and mass races.

The royal trio, who champion the race's official charity Head Together, also cheered runners along at different points of the route.

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Image caption The elite men's race started ahead of the mass race
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Image copyright Reuters

Armed police are watching over the 800,000 spectators, although the Met said there was no specific threat.

Steel road barriers have been placed at entrances to key roads along the route, to protect against any vehicle-based assault.

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Image caption Moe than 40,000 runners are taking part
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Image caption Metal barriers have been put in place for security

Among the runners was 47-year-old Gary McKee who completed his 100th marathon in 100 days.

Julie Henderson, a police officer who helped co-ordinate the response to the Westminster terror attack, took part to raise money for the Police Dependents' Charity while Mauro Pizzale, a City worker whose colleague's wife Aysha Frade was killed, ran to raise funds for Ms Frade's two children.

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Image caption EastEnders star Adam Woodyatt ran with his son Sam, just months after the teenager was hit by a car
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Image caption MP Jon Ashworth celebrates completing the race

Sixteen MPs - five from Labour, nine Conservatives, one independent and one from the SNP - took part as are celebrities including pop band Scouting for Girls and radio host Chris Evans, who ran it for the third year in a row. Afterwards, he said it was harder than previous years as he is "heavier and it's hotter than in previous years".

Image copyright PA
Image copyright PA
Image caption Breast cancer survivor Jackie Scully married Duncan Sloan on the The Cutty Sark before taking part in the race
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David Weir broke a record when he won his seventh London marathon wheelchair race. He sped to victory in a time of one hour 31 minutes and six seconds. It is the first time he has won the race since 2012.

In the women's wheelchair race, Switzerland's Manuela Schar took the title for the first time.

Mary Keitany of Kenya won the women's race in a world record time of two hours, 17 minutes and one second, while another Kenyan, Daniel Wanjiru, won the men's race in two hours, five minutes and 56 seconds.

Image caption The clean-up has already begun at the beginning of the race
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