Active initiative to run across county

Eddie and Andrew Beharie at a Dads and Lads sports session at Bede Academy in Blyth.
Eddie and Andrew Beharie at a Dads and Lads sports session at Bede Academy in Blyth.

Parents and students have been getting active in a pioneering initiative that is about to be rolled across a county.

Bede Academy in Blyth, introduced fathers and sons and mums and daughters’ sessions to promote healthy living and being active.

The evening sessions, held during the academy’s annual Healthy Living Week, allow students and their families to use the state of the art facilities including the sports hall, gym and dance studio.

The most recent event attracted 55 people, who took part in badminton matches and zumba sessions with the help of professional coaches.

The Bede initiative was spotted last year by Northumberland County Council, which is interested in rolling out a similar programme across the region.

Active Northumberland’s Lee Paris said the academy had helped the council win a bid for £240,000 from Sport England’s Community Sport Activities Fund.

He said: “We were really impressed with Bede Academy’s initiative, which removes instantly a major barrier to activity – child care.

“We will now be focusing on the 14 to 25-year-olds, an age group where activity tends to drop off. We will also address the over 50s.”

Director of sport at Bede Academy, Simon MacAree, added: “Inactivity is a major health worry in modern society and if we can encourage young people to remain active into adulthood, and also encourage their parents, it can help stave off all manner of health problems.

“We are delighted to open our doors so people can make the most of our fantastic facilities.”