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Britain urged to get on its feet

Posted 5 September 2012
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Britain urged to get on its feet
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The Olympics and Paralympics may have encouraged some to take up new sports from cycling and jogging to wheelchair basketball, but that is not the only way to get fitter.

For those who are perhaps not quite so good at competitive sport, simply putting on a pair of walking boots and getting out into the great outdoors could be the best way to get healthier.

Next month will see the launch of the Britain on Foot campaign, which aims to encourage people to do just that, Grough reports.

Devised by chief executive of the Outdoor Industries Association (OIA) Andrew Denton, the plan is to launch the campaign next month in at Westminster, where it will receive high profile backing from the British Mountaineering Council (BMC) and the Mountaineering All-Party Parliamentary Group, with Labour MP John Mann and Tory MP David Rutley hosting the event.

A spokesperson for the OIA said: "The formal launch is being supported by the BMC and will be preceded by a high profile media event on the morning of the same day, designed to put the outdoors firmly on the general public's radar.

"Britain on Foot is a call to action to get the British public fitter, healthier and happier in the great outdoors. Everyone can be involved no matter their age, ability or financial status."

The plan is to start by encouraging people into the outdoors to go walking and then expand into other activities, such as mountain biking and climbing.

Mr Denton loves to get out into the Peak District as he lives by the national park boundary in Glossop, a sentiment the two MPs at the launch may share.

Mr Mann's constituency of Bassetlaw in Nottinghamshire is within easy travelling distance of the national park, while Mr Rutley is MP for Macclesfield, a set that covers the section of the Peak District that lies in Cheshire.

Last month Mr Rutley joined the East Cheshire Ramblers on a local trek and spoke about the benefits of walking, as well as the importance of keeping footopaths open.ADNFCR-2803-ID-801442614-ADNFCR