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Step right up for this year’s Walk Leicester Festival

Published on Tuesday, May 3, 2022

People walking together in a Leicester park

A MONTH-long series of activities taking place in Leicester is encouraging more people to get their shoes on and to discover their local area.

The Walk Leicester Festival takes place throughout May, as part of the UK-wide events marking National Walking Month, and includes a wide-ranging programme covering guided walks and the chance to explore the city, as well as taster sessions on a range of walking-based sports activities.

The festival runs from May 3 to 31, kicking off at with a celebration of walking sports in Victoria Park on May 3.

Introductory sessions will be run by coaches from Leicester City Football Club, Leicester Tigers, Leicester County Cricket Club, Leicester Riders, and ic2tennis, followed by a full programme of walking sports held throughout May.

For those wanting to stretch their legs at a more leisurely pace, De Montfort University is running a programme of walks, with options to explore both its medieval heritage with buildings such as St Mary De Castro, The Magazine and the Turret Gateway, or the more recent history of its modern campus.

The Canal and Rivers Trust will be leading walks that take in both the heritage to be found along the River Soar, and exploring more modern street art installations, as well as the Spirits of the Canal aimed at younger visitors.

Members of the Saving the Saffron Brook project – a scheme to improve the diversity and sustainability of the waterway – will be taking walkers on a guided journey through the areas undergoing conservation work to showcase the brook’s natural beauty.

Throughout May, Live Well Leicester will be encouraging people to get involved in a series of short walks setting off from a number of sports centres, community centres and other city landmarks, while advising people on the benefits of gentle regular exercise.

There will also be a series of self-guided walks for people who aren’t able to take part in the arranged programme.

Full details, dates and booking information on all Walk Leicester events are available from Choose How You Move, here.  

In addition, the Betterpoints app which rewards points for walking or cycling activities, will be doubling its points throughout May and providing 100 bonus points to people taking part in walks throughout the festival.

Leicester deputy city mayor for the environment, Cllr Adam Clarke, said: “Walking is a great way to discover your local area by exploring parts of the city which might be away from the beaten track.

“It is also a valuable, free form of daily exercise which everyone can take at their own pace. There’s nothing better than getting out in the open air, whether it is to try out a new sport or learn more about the city’s heritage and history.

“In addition to the health benefits, encouraging people to walk more helps improve air quality and the environment more widely. Active travel, such as walking, is a key contributor to carbon reduction as set out in our climate emergency strategy.

“This year’s Walk Leicester Festival once again has a wide-ranging programme of walks and other activities, aimed at all ages, interests and abilities, so I’d encourage everyone to see what is going on near to them and get involved.”

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