Britain on foot

A new project, Britain on Foot, aims to get one million people walking. As well as to improve health the aim is to encourage Britons to appreciate the beautiful outdoor spaces this country has to offer.

© VisitBritain

Created by the Outdoor Industries Association, the government-backed initiative Britain on Foot champions walking – whether hiking up mountains, rambling through fields or simply strolling to work. The venture, which is also supported by VisitEngland and National Trust aims to get one million people up, out and walking.

“Britain on Foot is a group of organisations related to the outdoor industries banding together under one umbrella campaign with a very simple call to action – to make people active,” says Andrew Denton, CEO of the Outdoor Industries Association. “This is a not-for-profit initiative, and it’s just to get people to be more active more often. We want to give something back and get kids, inactive people or those who can’t afford to go to a gym, outdoors.”

The beauty of Britain on Foot is that anyone can get involved, simply by incorporating walking into their lives, however the initiative is also there for support and inspiration, with ideas and events listed on its website. Britain on Foot allows any business or charity linked to the great outdoors to be involved by letting them organise events in the initiative’s name, with many events planned for this month and beyond. The amount of people getting on their feet in the great outdoors will be monitored by an online pledge system.

© VisitBritain/James McCormick

“People will go onto our website and pledge to be more active this year,” says Denton. “The pledge is made public by going out on Twitter, building a social online campaign. Britain on Foot will then be able to support people in this community and also have a clear idea of how many people we have engaged with and how they are involved.”

The benefits of walking are endless: it’s free, gets the blood pumping, does wonders for both physical and mental health, and allows people a chance to look around and reflect, and where better to do all of this than in the hills, valleys, cities, villages and seaside towns of Great Britain?

Where in Britain do you like walking best? Tweet us @BritainMagazine