The UK’s greatest ever all-round athlete will be making an appearance in Durham next month, 40 years after winning his second Olympic gold medal. Decathlete Daley Thompson will be guest of honour at a special screening of a new documentary about his career, which will launch this year’s Durham City Run Festival. The event will take place at the Gala Theatre on the evening of Wednesday 17 July, on the eve of the three day festival of running.


Daley Thompson is one of the country’s greatest ever sportspeople, and also one of the world’s best ever decathletes. He won successive Olympic gold medals, at Moscow in 1980 and Los Angeles in 1984, broke the decathlon world record four times, and at one point was unbeaten in competition for nine years. The event at the Gala Theatre on Wednesday 17 July will be hosted by fellow athletics legend Steve Cram, who won a silver medal in the 1500m at Los Angeles, and is founder of the Durham City Run Festival. The centrepiece of the evening will be the screening of ‘Daley Thompson – Olympic superstar’, a new documentary about Daley’s career by Mob Film & TV, directed by Vadim Jean. It will be broadcast by the BBC this summer, marking the 40th anniversary of the 1984 Olympic Games. After the film, Steve will hold a ‘fireside chat’ with Daley, together offering more insights into the Los Angeles games and their careers in athletics.


Based in the heart of the city, the annual Durham City Run Festival is organised by Events of the North, in partnership with Durham County Council and Durham University. The event will run from 18-20 July and will be one of the first major events to take place in the region after the formation of the North East Mayoral Combined Authority, and a showcase for County Durham, which is leading the sport and culture portfolio within the new devolution arrangement. This year’s festival will once again feature the popular Durham City Run 5K and 10K races, the Run Like A Legend Mile challenge, XO urban orienteering, and Paula Radcliffe’s Families on Track initiative that gives family groups the opportunity to complete a 10K distance in a continuous relay, having fun while exercising together.


Steve Cram comments: “I’m really looking forward to welcoming Daley to help us kick off the Durham City Run Festival. He’s one of my oldest and best friends in sport, and he also happens to be one of the greatest athletes that the world has seen. It’s not before time that a film has been made about his life and career, and we’re delighted to have teamed up with Durham County Council to arrange this special screening in the Gala Theatre. Knowing Daley as I do, our chat afterwards will be lively and entertaining too. Everyone who attends is in for a real treat.”


Cllr Amanda Hopgood, leader of Durham County Council, adds: “We are delighted and incredibly honoured to welcome Daley Thompson to County Durham next month. An evening to celebrate the career of one of Britain’s greatest athletes is a fitting way to launch the Durham City Run Festival, which I am sure will inspire those taking part over the festival weekend, as well as plant the seed for people to get involved next year.


“As the portfolio holder for culture, creative, tourism and sport in the new North East Combined Authority, the Durham City Run Festival is not only a key part of the county’s cultural offer, but encourages people of all ages and abilities to get involved in sport and feel the sense of pride that comes with it.”


Tickets for ‘An evening with Daley Thompson’ cost £7 each and are available now at


Entries are open for all of the events that make up the Durham City Run Festival at