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Together, as the founders and directors of Africa Marathons, we have spent nearly four decades in African tourism and as your Africa Marathons team you’ll see from our personal profiles below, we retain a passion for Africa that is still as strong today as it was the first time we visited the continent.
We are excited to now be combining that passion with the personal experiences we have gained from sporting events in Africa, and to be able to share with you the joy you will find in running Africa.
Every Africa Marathons' package includes:
- Hotel stay, race entry assistance, event transport, pre- & post meals and social events
- A highly personal approach to planning itineraries
- Advice of top industry professionals that specialise in emerging and re-emerging destinations
- Africa Marathons' team running shirt
We are also the proud owners of Tailormade Africa, providing personalised, tailor made African travel and tailor made African safaris.
Please visit Tailormade Africa to see what sets us apart or contact us to find out more about how we personalise your itinerary.
Meet the team
Rob Morley: Director, Co-founder & Active Marathon Participant
Born and raised in the UK, Rob got his first glimpse of Africa on a Kenyan safari aged 13 – and he’s been hooked ever since. As soon as he finished university, he headed straight back out to neighbouring Tanzania to teach and coach sport and then moved to Ghana.
When he returned to the UK, he spent a year encouraging students to do the same before being hired by an Africa tour operator to design bespoke trips across East Africa. It was here he met fellow Africa Marathons & Tailormade Africa co-founder Clyde Beaty and together they worked side by side for several years until Rob left to assist a London-based NGO running volunteer projects across the continent.
Rob went on to work for two more highly respected Africa tour operators and has visited the continent countless times to climb Mount Kilimanjaro, run in the Sierra Leone Marathon, trek with mountain gorillas in Rwanda’s Volcanoes National Park, wander the Anglo-Zulu battlefields of KwaZulu-Natal, visit Ghana’s former slave castles, and listen to the distinctive songs of Madagascar’s indri.
He is a committee member of SATOA (www.satoa.com) – a non-profit association made up of tour operators, lodges, camps, tourist boards, airlines and representation companies that promote travel to Africa and the Indian Ocean. He is passionate about the positive effect tourism development can bring to African countries and works closely with local charities to ensure both traveller and country benefit from a visit.
Rob's passion for running culminated in founding the Putney Running Club, a free and social club that strongly believes that running with other people inspires and motivates you to push yourself. Putney Running Club has been going strong for over 3 years now and already has several hundred dedicated members. They regularly travel across Europe as a club to take on various running events. They have also completed many marathons across the globe - to name a few...the Bilbao Marathon, Paris Marathon, Rome Marathon, Boston Marathon, London Marathon, North Korea Marathon, Amsterdam Marathon, Stockholm Marathon, Cape Town Marathon and, the rather different Medoc 'Wine & Cheese' Marathon in the South of France, along with many other half-marathons across the UK and Europe. In 2018 a group of 19 undertook one of Africa Marathons offerings, the Sierra Leone Marathon, for the Charity Street Child, culminating in raising over £20,000 to fund a school - 'The Putney Running Club School' in Eastern Sierra Leone.
Rob also plays Tennis and Football and indulges in his oh-so-cool love of country music.
Clyde Beaty: Director, Co-founder & Ex Long Distance Runner
Born in Norway, Clyde’s parents emigrated to Zimbabwe when he was seven years old. Aged seventeen, he started working as a fishing guide at the lodge they managed on the banks of Lake Kariba, and from there started his training to become a professional guide. He gained the much-revered Zimbabwe safari guide status in 1998 with specialist skills in elephant behaviour, ornithology and lepidopterology (butterflies and moths).
He freelanced all over Zimbabwe, Zambia and Botswana and during that time also managed several camps, operated canoe safaris and was part of an anti-poaching unit In 2001 Clyde set up his own walking safari company in Mana Pools National Park, but eventually it succumbed to the negative political situation in Zimbabwe, so he moved to Tanzania to be head guide and guide trainer for one of Tanzania’s finest safari companies and to realise a dream of “working” the wildebeest migration of northern Serengeti. It was on one of these photographic tours that he met Anne, who took him back to the UK as a souvenir and married him.
Clyde spent nine years working as a senior safari consultant with an Africa specialist tour operator and it was here he met fellow Africa Marathons & Tailormade Africa co-founder and good friend, Rob Morley. He left to become sales director at a smaller Africa-specialist company before deciding it was time to set up his own bespoke Africa travel company, Tailormade Africa and Africa Marathons.
Whilst Clyde's running and marathon career has come to a grinding halt, due to his love of squash taking precedence, he has a rather cool and "Africa Marathon" appropriate claim to fame. Back in his school days at the tender age of 16, and "several" kgs lighter, he and a small group of fellow schoolers, led by a crazy but awesome English teacher, took on a special running event for Operation Raleigh in Zimbabwe.
The route: Harare (capital city) to Lake Kariba. Distance: 376km. The mammoth undertaking was done over 4 nights and 5 days running predominantly at night to avoid the heat of the day.
Clyde's love of running has never waned and since starting Africa Marathons he has vowed to get back into training. We're waiting in anticipation!!!
Gemma Oates: Africa Marathons Travel Manager & Passionate Race Participant
Born in the UK, Gemma has spent most of her life running. Her love for the sport began as a teenager and she hasn't stopped since. This passion led her to train as a Physiotherapist and she has worked in this profession in the UK for 15 years. During this time she helped many a runner recover from injuries and get back out there doing what they love.
Over the last few years, Gemma has completed a number of running events both in the UK and overseas. Last year she ran the London Marathon which was a great achievement for her. She has competed in a number of races abroad, including the very fun Marathon du Medoc in France, the Polar Night Half Marathon, which is in the Arctic Circle in Norway, and the Amsterdam Half Marathon. These trips led to her bug for combining travel and running.
A few years ago she joined a running club in London, Putney Running Club, where she met a special man whom she ended up marrying last year. Here, she also became good friends with Rob. Gemma booked her Honeymoon in Tanzania through Tailormade Africa and she instantly fell in love with Africa. Shortly after getting married, Gemma's husband had a work opportunity in Durban, South Africa, which they decided to give a go.
Gemma is now living in sunny South Africa and absolutely loving it. She has already started taking part in running events out there, including the Two Oceans Half Marathon, and she is soon to take part in the Cape Town Marathon 10km race. Her passion for running, her expertise as a Physiotherapist and the fact she is now living in South Africa led to Rob asking her to join team Africa Marathons, which she happily accepted. So watch this space for Gemma's exciting adventures with Africa Marathons!
Follow Gemma's Africa running journey on Instagram on @runwithgemma.
Gareth Foster: Digital Marketing Manager & Trail Runner
Born in South Africa, Gareth started his running career at the tender age of 7. He started off with cross-country and soon developed his talent as a keen sprinter. He has been active as a runner for more than 30 years, also having represented South Africa at the Southern African Student Games in the 200m and 4 x 100m relay events, while at university.
His love for sport paved the way for him to complete his honours in Sport Science. He did, however, find his passion for Information Technology soon after that and this has been his career ever since. Digital Marketing which involves all aspects of marketing a business online is Gareth’s specialisation and one of his roles within the company.
With Gareth’s many years of invaluable experience running in South Africa, having completed several dozen half marathons, including three Two Ocean Half Marathons and the Peninsula Marathon, he has much to add to the Africa Marathons team and happily accepted the challenge.
These days he is a keen trail runner, but we think this is just because he loves waking during races. But he is slowly making his way back to the road, so we’ll make a roadie of him yet again.
Gareth also has a passion for travelling and of course all things tech.
Get In Touch
Whether you are an experienced or novice runner, looking for a new challenge or simply thinking about visiting the continent for the first time, we would love to speak to you!
Our first aim is to get to know you, your running experience and aspirations, so we may best advise on which events would challenge you whilst giving you a high chance of success. So please get in touch. We look forward to speaking to you.
E: [email protected]
T: +44 7791 360170 (Rob)
T: +44 7809 726266 (Clyde)