A marathon runner has gone the extra mile to commemorate Brexit day after completing a 40 mile run to create a map of the UK ‘running’ from the EU.
Nathan Rae completed the artwork – entitled ‘BREXIT! or: Goodbye Friend, I Will Miss EU’ – in just over eight hours on Tuesday (28 Jan) – but said it was still easier than “getting a Brexit deal done”.
The 39-year-old painstakingly mapped out the route on his Strava app across Greater Manchester to create a GPS outline of Britain as it “runs” from the EU.
The filmmaker faced snow and rain during his eight hour and 23 minute run but said he was undeterred as “Brexit means Brexit”.
Nathan, from Manchester, said: “I wanted to create an accurate map of Britain but also do something a bit creative, so I’ve added legs to the bottom to make it look like Britain is running away.
“The planning process has been the longest and hardest I’ve had to do so far, which is appropriate with how the Brexit negotiations have been going.
“We’ve known Brexit was happening for a while now and it’s such an important event I wanted to commemorate it with GPS Art.
“When I was going through the city centre it was a bit of a struggle as the rain was lashing down but I had to keep going – Brexit means Brexit.
“But for the most part the race wasn’t too difficult, I think it was easier than getting a Brexit deal done.”
The runner combined his two passions – maps and running – to create drawings through running paths.
Since his first one in 2017 he says he’s completed over 35 different drawings.
The dad-of-four said: “I like to see shapes in a map and try to create something interesting. I’ve done animals before, but this time I wanted to do a proper image.”
He added: “I am a massive map geek, I love how they work and how they are made. I took up running a few years ago and I thought this would be a great way to combine my two favourite things.
“I love GPS runs because it forces me to commit to running – you can’t just stop and go back when you’re tired because it’ll mess up the drawing.”
The EU referendum was held in June 2016 and the UK will officially leave the EU on 31 January 2020.
Nathan’s art can be found on https://www.facebook.com/NathanRaeGPS/ and https://www.nathanrae.co.uk/gpsart