A farmer who diversified his business by creating an obstacle course is looking to expand his business after the tremendous success of his now annual events.
Before Charlie Moreton, the young farmer turned entrepreneur behind the Wolf Run, created his popular event he was due to take over the 600-acre family farm, the Welsh Road Farm, in Offchurch, near Leamington.
As wheat prices rose, Mr Moreton seized the opportunity to diversify for the sake of the farm and his own career.
After running a number of charity banger-car events on the farm and with the rise of obstacle-course racing and mud runs, which he had himself taken part in, Mr Moreton devised a business plan to create and run Warwickshire’s first wild-running event.
Wild running combines three types of off-road running, which includes mud runs, trail runs and obstacle runs and in 2011 the Wolf Run was born, which saw 650 runners taking part.
Mr Moreton said: “When I had the idea my family were surprised at the scale I wanted to make it and the nature of the event. It was quite a surprise at first that the event was successful. Obstacle-course racing throughout the UK has boomed and we were lucky that we started when we did.”
The Wolf Run is now a seasonal event and the family farm is now home to the spring and autumn runs with the summer and winter runs taking place at Stanford Hall in Leicestershire, which is eight miles from Rugby.
The weekend-long events now attract more than 9,000 runners and a further 4,500 supporters.
Mr Moreton has a team made up of five full-time staff and 250 part-time staff who help at the events.
The former farmer is looking to expand his business but his flagship obstacle course near Leamington could be jeopardised.
Mr Moreton said: “I am looking at expanding and I am considering other venues for the run in London, in the West Country and in Manchester.
“The plans for the high- speed train running through Warwickshire would cut the current course in half. But I would like to keep a venue here.
“My business is lucky to have runners from all over the country and from abroad. I would not want it to go away from where it all started and where my team are based and where most of the runners come from.”
Runners taking part in the 10K events individually or as a group and have to navigate the route which includes open ground, woodland, lakes, and thick mud, as well as obstacles.
The course construction takes up to one month to complete.
The Wolf Run creator is proud of how far his event has come in five years.
He said: “The event involves so many friends and family and I have met so many great people while doing it. When you see people achieve their goal coming across the finish line, when some people have not run 10k on a road let alone on an obstacle course, it really makes it worth while and rewarding.
“We have also helped to raise hundreds of thousands for charity when runners decide to take part to raise money for a chosen charity.”
The next event, the winter Wolf Run will be taking place on November 5 and November 6 at Stanford Hall.