Swindon’s latest Beat the Street campaign got off on the right foot yesterday (25 September) with an official launch at GWR Park on Faringdon Road, attended by local school children, residents and council representatives.
Beat the Street once again challenges schools, workplaces and community groups to see how far they can walk, run or cycle over six weeks, tapping Beat Boxes along the way in return for points and prizes.
The Beat Boxes are a familiar sight in the area as the local community embraced the challenge and set a new Beat the Street record when the game took place last year. More than 32,000 local people got involved and covered an incredible 313,000 miles on foot and by bike in just six weeks.
Now, organisers are challenging participants to go one better this year with more Beat Boxes covering more parts of Swindon, new prizes and lots of exciting events and activities happening during the game.
This year’s event will run until 6 November and is open to anyone in the community who would like to get more active. It’s free to take part and players tap contactless cards or key fobs against Beat Boxes on lampposts to track their journey and earn points for their team.
An updated website has been launched which contains an individual leaderboard to find the top tapper in Swindon as well as a map which allows players to navigate from their current location to the nearest Beat Box. Players can also search for Beat Boxes, schools, outdoor gyms and card distribution points to help plan their journeys and make the most of this year’s game.
Katherine Knight, Director of Intelligent Health said: “We always get really valuable feedback from funders and players on what we can do to improve Beat the Street and we have included a number of these in this year’s game in Swindon.
“Many of the players’ ideas were about improvements to the website which we have used to create the version released this week. A few residents viewed the development site six months ago and helped plan the improvements. We wanted to launch in Swindon because they held our most successful game last year and are experienced Beat the Streeters! We hope everyone enjoys the game this year and we encourage players to use the website and tell us what they think so we can continue to make the game more fun for adults and kids.”
Beat the Street is funded by The National Lottery through Sport England and Swindon Borough Council.
Councillor Brian Ford, Swindon Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Adults and Health, said: “Beat the Street provides a great incentive for the people of Swindon to get out and get active through walking, jogging or cycling. We know from last time that if people get involved in the game and get more active, they are likely to stay active so why not pick up a card and get tapping?”
To set up a workplace or community group into the competition, email email@example.com.