Beat that! Stevenage is streets ahead as town steps out towards the stratosphere

Beat the Street final presentation at Martins Wood Primary School

Beat the Street final presentation at Martins Wood Primary School - Credit: Archant

They walked, they cycled, they ran, they scooted – Stevenage found all sorts of ways of clocking up the miles during the six-week Beat the Street campaign that gripped the town.

The Beat The Street trophy

The Beat The Street trophy - Credit: Archant

And all that activity – part of a County Hall-backed health project designed to get the town moving – saw the 500,000 mile target, equivalent to a trip to outer space, surpassed to secure a £1,000 boost for Stevenage and District Riding for the Disabled and Stevenage Arts Guild.

Mildmay Road’s Martins Wood Primary School also won a £500 prize after children, parents and staff clocked up nearly 60,000 miles between them to take team honours.

Runners-up were Burymead’s Shephalbury Park Primary School, who secured themselves £250 for their efforts.

Martins Wood head Tom Evans said: “Beat the Street has been brilliant, everyone has had great fun together and really enjoyed it.

Shephalbury Park school were runners-up

Shephalbury Park school were runners-up - Credit: Archant

“I’m really impressed by the way the community has got behind the scheme.

“Families from different schools have made friends with each other as it’s given them a common interest to talk about.

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“When I did a 28-mile walk one weekend more than 200 parents and children joined me during my six-hour trek.

“I wasn’t once on my own – that’s the kind of heartwarming experience that makes my job worthwhile.”

Deputy mayor John Lloyd presents the charity prize to representatives of Riding For The Disabled Ass

Deputy mayor John Lloyd presents the charity prize to representatives of Riding For The Disabled Association based at Courtlands riding stables, Todds Green - Credit: Archant

Shephalbury Park head Chelsea Atkins added: “It has been really lovely to see all the schools in Stevenage coming together in such a positive way to take part.

“We’ve also noticed the children’s stamina has really improved, with walks that were taking children 20 minutes at the start taking only five minutes by the end!”

According to Herts County Council chiefs at a presentation event at Martins Wood on Friday, the scheme in Stevenage was the best yet – and it’s been run elsewhere in the UK, Europe and the United States.

Councillor Teresa Heritage, County Hall’s lead member for health, said: “Thank you and congratulations to everyone who took part. The effort that people have put in has been truly amazing.

“It has made Stevenage a happier, healthier place, and we would encourage people who have been enthused over the last six weeks to carry on walking, cycling or taking part in physical activity.”

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