MORE than 130,000 miles were walked by Barnsley school children - as well as their families and teachers - as part of the landmark Beat the Street scheme.

The health initiative, which has run for the past six weeks, saw the town join more than 1m national players in travelling across Barnsley to rack up points by tapping ‘Beat Boxes’.

The total number of miles walked, cycled and scooted is equivalent to travelling around the world five times.

Coun Jim Andrews, cabinet spokesperson for public health, said: “We’re extremely proud to have far exceeded our targets for participation in the area. To have seen all the families out and about, taking part and tapping the Beat Boxes has been brilliant.

“A huge amount of work has gone into all this. Five times around the world is a massive achievement.

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“Active travel benefits our communities in so many ways, from improving health and wellbeing, to reducing air pollution. We’re aware of the health figures associated with the population of Barnsley, and after such a positive response to Beat the Street in the area, we’re hopeful that we will see a lasting impact on the population.”

In 2015, a Public Health England profile of Barnsley stated that life expectancy for men in the area was 7.9 years lower than the UK average, while women’s life expectancy was 5.9 years lower.

It also highlighted that 20.5 per cent of Year 6 children were classified as obese in Barnsley.

These are both factors the National Lottery-funded Beat the Street will hopefully improve as it leaves a lasting legacy on the town.

The Chronicle has already been contacted by the school which believes it’s won the competition - keep an eye on these pages over the coming weeks when the winner is officially revealed.