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Successful walking project marches on

We marked the 10th anniversary of our successful Walking for Health scheme by staging a festival day - and announcing the launch of yet another regular weekly walk!

The new easy trek from Youlgrave - the 23rd weekly free walk organised by the District Council - will start on Tuesday 23 September.

Two of the original walk leaders, Cllr Carol Walker and Trevor Roper, admiring the celebration cakeTen years ago Councillor Carol Walker led the very first health walk in her home town of Bakewell - and it was fitting that Bakewell's Agricultural Business Centre (ABC) was chosen to host Thursday's 10-year celebration.

There was even a celebration cake - made by council officer Eileen Tierney - themed around a map of the Derbyshire Dales.

Councillor Walker, this year's Chairman of the District of the Derbyshire Dales, welcomed more than 130 regular walkers to the festival, which included four circular walks from the ABC, presentations and, later, a variety of have-a-go classes including pilates, yoga, tai chi, indoor bowls and various forms of dance and chair-based exercise.

Said Councillor Walker, who continues to lead Bakewell's Thursday morning health walk:

"This really was a unique celebration. I count myself fortunate to have been involved in the very first health walk back in 2004 and to have seen this project grow to include 23 weekly walks across the beautiful Dales, including Ashbourne, Bakewell, Matlock, Wirksworth, Tideswell, Litton and now Youlgrave. Long may they continue!"

Cllr Carol Walker, second right, leading one of the celebration walksThe District Council's Walking for Health officer Howard Griffith announced a series of long service presentations handed out by colleague Karen Carpenter, who was involved in the original planning of the walks project.

Singled out for special praise were the scheme's 45 volunteer walk leaders who last year enabled 7,075 individual walks and a surge of interest in recent times - participation rates have increased by over 65% since 2011.

  • The new weekly Tuesday walk from Youlgrave starts from the Coldwell End car park at 10.30am on 23 September.
  • More information about all of the District Council's Health Walks is available here or by contacting Howard Griffith on 01629 761 194.

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