It’s the challenge for people of all ages that’s already had 1.5 million people involved – and now there’s time to join our Dons team!
A popular interactive game – called ‘Beat the Street’ - has launched in Merton and it goes on until 26 April, so there’s plenty of opportunity to make sure you’re a part of it.
The key aim is fitness and to get young and old walking and cycling in the borough as much as possible during the next month or so.
Beat the Street strives to have a significant impact on increasing levels of physical activity among adults and children. It also helps reduce congestion, improving air quality, and helps families spend time together, exploring local green spaces.
To play, children use a special tap card and paper map, which will be distributed by participating primary schools. Adults can pick up their free card from one of Merton’s libraries or leisure centres. Players over the age of 13 can download the free Beat the Street app to play the game by tapping their phone.
Once the game is underway, players find their nearest of 200 Beat Boxes, which are contactless card readers positioned on lampposts around the borough. Beat Boxes record each player’s points tally and can be found near schools, leisure centres and green spaces. Participants can record their activity and add points by hovering their card over the reader.
Players can join a school, community, their families and friends or a workplace team. There are also teams for the two official charities of the Mayor of Merton, Councillor Joan Henry – Dons Local Action Group and Jimmy Asher Foundation. There will be prizes for the teams that travel the furthest, with vouchers for books and sports equipment on offer. Beat the Street leader boards allow players and teams to compare their progress and compete – in the healthiest way possible. There will be also opportunities for teams of all sizes to win prizes.
Fiona Sutherland, Community Development Manager at our Foundation, said: “This is such an exciting initiative for our borough – a way to get all people both young and old heading off the beaten track to explore areas of their community they have never had reason to set foot in before! We have an AFC Wimbledon Foundation team everyone is free to join and we can’t wait to get started!’
When you sign-up there’s an option that says ‘choose team’ and then AFC Wimbledon is one of the options, so make sure you select us and represent the Dons with pride!
More than 1.5 million people have played Beat the Street so far, in more than 120 locations across the UK, including Glasgow, Llanelli, Sheffield and Torbay. It has been designed to get communities to become more active and to make small lifestyle changes, such as walking or cycling to school or work more often.
Councillor Peter McCabe, Cabinet Member for Health and Social Care, said: “We’re delighted to bring Beat the Street to Merton. It’s free to take part in Beat the Street and it’s open to everyone regardless of age, ability or background. This inclusive and compelling game encourages you to exercise in a fun way with your friends and family, plus explore your local area.”
Beat the Street Merton has been commissioned by Merton Council and NHS South West London with support from the National Lottery via Sport England. It is being delivered by Intelligent Health.
More information is available at www.beatthestreet.me/merton or you can access @BTSMerton on Twitter.