ABOUT 1,000 runners of all ages will be on the starting line for an annual fundraising run.

Runners will stride around the grounds of the picturesque Lambton Estate, near Chester-le-Street, on Sunday for the Lambton 10k run and 3k fun run.

Both runs will raise money for the Foundation of Light, the charitable arm of Sunderland AFC.

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First out of the blocks at 10am will be 700 experienced runners taking part in the 10k around the estate, which provided the backdrop for the BBC period drama The Paradise.

They will be followed five minutes later by 300 people taking part in the family-friendly 3k event, many of them in animal-themed fancy dress, with prizes on offer for the best costume.

Jemma Garrett, events coordinator at the Foundation of Light, said: “The Lambton 10k and 3k is one of our most popular fundraising events and it’s not hard to see why.

“The grounds of the Lambton Estate are extremely beautiful and provide the perfect backdrop to this fun-filled event.

“I hope that everyone really gets into the spirit of the day, particularly the 3k runners, who are being asked to wear creative, animal-themed fancy dress and I look forward to seeing a mix of mini zebras, lions and more making their way around the track.”

Both runs are sponsored by Cestria Community Housing, Lambton Estate and Start Fitness and supported by Sir Tom Cowie Charitable Trust.

Places are still available, priced from £6 per person for the 3k and £12 per person for the 10k, from events@foundationoflight.co.uk or 0191-551-5191.