‘Shock and sadness’ as popular game promoting exercise will not return in 2019

Beat the Street ran across East Sussex for two years. Pictured are pupils from Battle and Langton Primary School
Beat the Street ran across East Sussex for two years. Pictured are pupils from Battle and Langton Primary School

Beat the Street, a free game which encouraged people across East Sussex to exercise and improve their health, will not be running in 2019, writes Ben Knapton.

The fitness-based initiative saw children and adults rewarded for walking, running or cycling to various ‘Beat Boxes’ throughout the area.

By tapping their card on some of the hundreds of sensors located on lampposts across the county, players would have the chance to win thousands of pounds’ worth of prizes through a fun, innovative way of exercising.

Last year, Beat the Street players travelled a total distance of 239,704 miles from June 6 to July 25. The game was funded by NHS Hastings and Rother Clinical Commissioning Group, NHS Eastbourne, Hailsham and Seaford CCG and East Sussex County Council’s Public Health team.

Dr and Mrs Wycherley, of Peartree Lane in Bexhill, said: “As advocates of personal fitness and individual well-being, we understand with shock and great sadness that Beat the Street will not be run in East Sussex during 2019.

“After being such a great success in the county in both 2017 and 2018, we cannot understand the logic behind this decision. It brought together schools, fitness centres, families and individuals, as well as vastly improving the well-being and fitness of the local community.”

In a joint response, East Sussex County Council and event organisers Intelligent Health said: “We’re really proud of what we have achieved with Beat the Street over the past two years with tens of thousands of residents across East Sussex joining in the game.

“The initiative was planned as a two-year project in East Sussex to help reduce inactivity and encourage people to walk and cycle more.

“Evidence from our games has shown that Beat the Street has succeeded in helping many players to become more active, and our aim is to create a sustained shift in the level of physical activity of participating communities long after the game has come to a close.”

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