On your Marks – get set, walk!

Release date: 20 July 2016

Caption: Cllrs Harris and MacKenzie-Charrington give the ‘thumbs up’ for walking

Cotswold District Councillors Mark Harris and Mark MacKenzie-Charrington are getting into the habit of leaving their cars behind and walking around Cirencester to attend various business appointments.   Inspired by the national ’10,000 steps a day’ campaign, they are already feeling the health benefits and are also enjoying being out in the open air at a lovely time of year.

Cllr Harris, who chairs the Cirencester Parking Board and is also the Member for Abbey Ward and Mayor of Cirencester, believes that there is plenty of scope for more people to follow their lead:

“I realise that some people are completely reliant on cars for various good reasons, and there are lots of people who do walk.  However, I also know that there are others who could consider leaving their vehicles at home and, instead, walk short distances to and from the town centre.  Cirencester is surprisingly compact in comparison with many towns – for example it only takes about half an hour to walk into the Market Place from Stratton (about 3,000 steps) and just over 20 minutes to get there from Saint Lawrence Church in Chesterton (about 2,100 steps).  Additionally, being on foot helps you to gain a much better appreciation of the stunning local architecture and heritage attractions which people normally speed past in their cars.” 

Cllr MacKenzie-Charrington, who is the Cabinet Member with oversight of the Cirencester Parking Project, adds:

“We are encouraging local residents to adopt other methods of transport as a means of reducing demand for parking spaces in the town, and walking is a great option for those who want to build and maintain fitness levels, burn off calories, and also save some money on their transport costs.  NHS and Public Health England strongly recommend walking a total of about five miles per day (10,000 steps), and their experts have pointed out that many people already account for about 20% of that total just by moving around the home and office. A stroll to and from the town centre would help to move towards that overall daily target – it really does make a difference.”

NHS Advice:

Increasing your walking is easier than you think. Try these tips for getting more steps into your life:

  • get off the bus early and walk the rest of the way home or to work
  • take the stairs instead of the lift or escalators
  • investing in a shopping trolley will encourage you to walk to and from local shops for your groceries
  • walk the children to school, whatever the weather
  • get fit with Fido – walk the dog
  • find a walking partner, so you have someone to chat to as you walk
  • alternatively, get an MP3 player and listen to your favourite music or podcasts as you go
  • plan interesting walks during your days off
  • join a walking group like the Ramblers



Cotswold District Council
Trinity Road