Tough Mudder race in Dalkeith called off at final hour after licence revoked

An obstacle race which sees participants dunked into an ice bath and wade through a mile of mud has been called off less than a day before it was due to start.

Saturday, 3rd July 2021, 10:21 am
Updated Saturday, 3rd July 2021, 10:26 am
Competitors covered in mud on the 'mud mile' obstacle during a Tough Mudder event on the Badminton Estate, Wiltshire. Picture: PA
Competitors covered in mud on the 'mud mile' obstacle during a Tough Mudder event on the Badminton Estate, Wiltshire. Picture: PA

The Scotland Tough Mudder was set to take place in the Dalkeith Country Park on Saturday and Sunday.

But organisers said Midlothian Council contacted them after 6pm on Friday saying the licence to hold the event – which was sold out – was revoked.

Tough Mudder said the move came less than two days after the council voted to support the licence after they “reviewed the latest guidelines and considered the extensive safety measures we’d put in place”.

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In a post on their website, organisers said: “It’s a maelstrom of emotions right now: We’re grateful to the team for the months of work they put in with the council, accommodating every request made and consistently demonstrating we could deliver a safe event.

“We’re deeply frustrated with this last-minute revocation. And we’re devastated not to be able to celebrate a return to in-person events with you, our Mudder community.

“The irony is not lost on us that just this past weekend, almost 16,000 rugby fans gathered together in Murrayfield, just 10 minutes up the road.

“We will continue our challenge of the decision to ensure other customers and other businesses do not suffer the same unreasonable last minute reversal of previously granted permissions.”

Four areas of Scotland – including Midlothian – are currently recording their highest rate of new Covid-19 cases since comparable figures began last summer, when mass testing was first introduced across the UK.

The area is currently under Level 2 restrictions with Scottish Government guidance saying “outdoor seated and open space events are advised to operate with a maximum capacity of 500 people”.

The council told the BBC the decision was taken after clarification as to interpretation of the guidance was given.

East Lothian is the local area with the highest rate of new cases in the UK, with 595.8 cases per 100,000 people in the seven days to June 24.

In second place is Dundee, on 587.3 cases per 100,000.

Hyndburn in Lancashire is third on 547.9, but it is followed by two more areas in the central belt of Scotland: Midlothian (520.2) and Edinburgh (503.5).