Hertfordshire school children set local record for The Daily Mile


Last week was one of activity and excitement for school pupils around the county, as collectively, they set a Daily Mile record.

On Friday 14th February more than 12,000 children and staff from over 60 Hertfordshire schools took part in an event organised by the Herts Sports and Physical Activity Partnership (HSP); the Active Partnership for Hertfordshire. Coined locally as ‘Hertfordshire does The Daily Mile’, eleven of the schools were selected to run alongside one of a team of athlete ambassadors, provided by HSP.

One of them, ‘401 Marathon Man’ Ben Smith visited Thorley Hill Primary School in Bishop’s Stortford. A huge advocate of using running to overcome mental health difficulties, Ben had spent the week delivering inspiring school assemblies – during which he described his own school days experiences of bullying – and supporting hundreds of children to run their Daily Mile.

Alex Varran, the Partnership’s Coordinator for The Daily Mile and organiser of the week’s events said: “To have had 12,000 children running on Friday morning was just incredible! We applaud the schools who got involved and shared their exploits through photos and videos on our social media channels; the sense of fun and enjoyment was palpable! More than 220 schools are now signed up to The Daily Mile in Hertfordshire, each showing they clearly understand the phenomenal benefits that being active every day bring to the classroom. The week’s activities have given huge exposure to the schools who participate, and hopefully encouraged those who aren’t currently involved, to get running.”

In welcoming the initiative HSP Partnership Director, John O’Callaghan commented:

“We were delighted that the athletes agreed to join us last week we are very grateful to them for sharing their remarkable journeys with the schools. Like all good programmes, the appeal of The Daily Mile is in its simplicity and I would urge all Headteachers within those schools that are yet to register for The Daily Mile, to get involved at the very earliest opportunity. It’s impact on reducing truancy, increasing attention levels and ultimately improving the attainment levels of our young people, is increasingly evidenced and that we have now reached a stage where almost half of Hertfordshire’s schools have registered for this initiative, is a fine achievement.”

For more information about The Daily Mile in Hertfordshire, or the week, contact Alex Varran at a.varran2@herts.ac.uk.

Below: The schools visited by athletes on Friday 14th February

Rachael Mackenzie St Adrians, St. Albans
Alistair Patrick-Heselton Hexton JMI School, Hitchin
Tom Davis Yewtree Primary School, Hemel Hempstead
Kate Grey Hunsdon JMI School, Hunsdon
Toby Garbett Trotts Hill Primary and Nursery School, Stevenage
Hannah Beharry Fair Field Junior School, Radlett
Tom Haffield Arnett Hills Junior & Mixed Infant School, Rickmansworth
Alex Slabinsky Panshanger Primary, Welwyn Garden City
Nicola Minichiello Jenyns First School and Nursery, Braughing
Steve Frew Sheredes Primary School, Hoddesdon
Rachel Laybourne  Richard Whittington Primary School, Bishop’s Stortford
Ben Smith Thorley Hill Primary School, Bishop’s Stortford