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Healthy Parks

Family cycling in Bedford Park


Being active outdoors in the fresh air is good for you!

It may be what grandma tells you when all you want to do is stay indoors and watch TV but many academic and health studies over the last few years have shown she's right.





Just a walk in the park

Whatever your age of level of fitness, taking a regular walk in the park can improve your fitness, reduce the risk of many chronic illnesses and improve your mental well-being... and unlike many other things said to be good for you, it's enjoyable too.

There are miles of walks through the borough's parks, nature reserves and rights of way. Once you start exploring the network of footpaths you may discover many lovely parts of the towns, villages and countryside that you've never ventured into before.

www.walkingforhealth.org.uk - gives you more information on ways in which walking can improve your health.

www.letsgo.org.uk - provides information on places to walk, picnic and enjoy across the county of Bedfordshire.

Walks and trails - lists guided walks to help you learn more about the history of the town.


Sport in the park

Leisure cycling, jogging and playing outdoor sports can really boost your efforts to keeping you active and help to establish a healthy lifestyle. It can be encouraging meeting others trying to do the same. The parks provide many walking and cycling routes and have seasonal sports pitches and courts for all ages.

Outdoor sports in parks - gives details of the sports sites and courts in council parks and green spaces.

Bedford Green Wheel - tells you about the progress being made in linking up off-road routes around Bedford and Kempston passing through many parks and green spaces. The paths provide pleasant local cycling and jogging routes for venturing away from your own part of town.

Cycling in Bedford & Kempston - takes you to this site's transport pages with useful information for cyclists.

Bedford Parkrun takes place in every Saturday. It's a 5km run and is free to enter but you do need to register. Click on this link to Bedford Parkrun to find out more.


Healthy Park project in Jubilee Park

A new ping pong table has been installed recently and will be joined shortly with Healthy Park information panels and notice board to keep park visitors informed of healthy activities and opportunities in the area. This has been funded by ward member funds and is a useful contribution to the healthy parks initiative.

www.nhs.uk/change4life - find out more about how you can make simple changes that will help you to live better and live longer.


It's child's play

The best time to learn healthy habit is as a child. Children instinctively enjoy being active so a regular visit to the park and play area can be all they need to encourage them to run, jump, balance, climb and mix with other children - all of which is important for childhood development.

There are over 90 play areas managed by the council in the borough as well as others looked after by Parish Councils, housing associations, developers and other landowners. Parents and carers are required to supervise their children in the play area, so why not join in with them and feel some of the benefit too.

Play area page - has a listing of the sites managed by the Parks & Countryside Team and other related information.


Care for yourself, care for the park

The best way to keep yourself active is variety. Having lots of reasons to get out and active throughout the year will encourage you to maintain your healthy lifestyle. Becoming a community volunteer offers you a wide variety of opportunities to be more active, meet others and help to care for your environment.

The Community Champion Scheme invites you to get involved in your local park in activities ranging from the traditional planting and clean-ups to undertaking surveys, audits and park furniture checks. Some are more physically demanding than others but they'll all get you outdoors and active.

Visit our Community volunteering page to find out about the many opportunities available in Bedford.

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Borough Hall Exterior

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