Stepping Out for 10 healthy years

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A WALKING initiative in East Lancashire is celebrating its ten year anniversary!

The “Stepping Out” project started back in 2002 and consists of volunteer-led walks across the whole of East Lancashire. Over the past ten years, volunteers have led more than 4,000 walks – including many based in Clitheroe and the Ribble Valley – with an impressive 65,000 people taking part.

Fran Riley, Health Improvement Practitioner at Lancashire Care NHS Foundation Trust said: “On behalf of the group we are delighted to be celebrating the projects 10th anniversary and are so proud about what we’ve managed to achieve so far.

“The primary aim of the walks is to encourage more people to get out and about and become more active by walking. I think as a group we’ve completely exceeded our initial expectations and are overwhelmed by the amount of people that have taken part.”

To celebrate the Trust is holding a special anniversary walk from Hyndburn Sports Centre to Oswaldtwistle Mills on October 16th and a social event at Accrington Town Hall on October 19th. The walk will give walkers the option of a half-hour, one hour or one-and-a-half hour walk and the social event is open to partners and friends of the walkers.

Speaking of the Stepping Out group’s futures plans, Fran added: “We will continue to run the walks and hope to get more people involved than ever before so ask that people get in touch if this is something they’re interested in.

“I would really like to thank all of the volunteers who have given up hundreds of hours of their time up over the years to benefit others. Without them the project simply could not continue.”

To find out more or to take part please call Fran on 01254 380441. For details of local Stepping Out walks se our weekly What’s On columns.