Doncaster to get millions of pounds to help deal with 'inactivity crisis'

Runners out on the 5k course at the Doncaster parkrun session at Sandall Park. Money is to be put into getting more people active
Runners out on the 5k course at the Doncaster parkrun session at Sandall Park. Money is to be put into getting more people active
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Millions of pounds are to be ploughed into getting Doncaster residents more physically active through a Sport England pilot scheme to deal with an 'inactivity crisis'.

Doncaster Council's cabinet yesterday confirmed the borough would take up a place in a scheme which politicians hope will improve public health by getting people off the coach and moving.

Fine details of how the scheme will work will now be developed.

Doncaster is one of 12 areas chosen for the scheme from 113 applications. The scheme aims to work on 'bold new approaches to build healthier, more active communities across England'.

Around £100 million of National Lottery cash will be invested in the projects in the pilot scheme over four years to make it easier for people in the areas to access sport and physical activity.

Issues that have been mentioned in council reports on the subject include transport, safety, confidence and cost. There is likely to be between £10 million and £13 million available for Doncaster over four years.

Official figures show Doncaster has some of the lowest physical activity levels in the country, with almost a third of adults doing less than 30 minutes of physical activity a week. Council leisure services business development manager Andy Maddox said the recommendation was 150 minutes.

His report before cabinet stated: "Those low levels of activity have a significant impact on our population wellbeing and health, contributing to the high levels of overweight and obese children and adults."

"There is no silver bullet that will solve our inactivity crisis."

Inactivity is related to around 24,000 GP consultations each year in the borough.

Mayor Ros Jones said of the scheme: "It's a way to draw down funding that is specifically going to help people in our borough. Once we get the delivery plans, we can improve the lives of our population from the cradle to the grave."