MP visits school running track funded by sugar tax
Arundel & South Downs MP Nick Herbert visited St Peter’s CE Primary School in Henfield on Friday (8 February) to see how the school is helping to improve pupils’ physical and mental health with the addition of a new running track, the ‘St Peter’s Metres’.
Last week marked Children’s Mental Health Week (4-10 February) which this year has the theme ‘Healthy: Inside and Out’. Place2Be, the charity promoting the awareness week, is encouraging schools, children and their families to think about the positive impact that physical activity has on mental wellbeing.
Mrs Denise Maurice, the school’s headteacher, welcomed Mr Herbert to the school. They were joined by pupils from the school’s council to see the newly laid 300m all-weather running track. The track is used every day by pupils and staff, and the children delighted in telling their MP how many laps they had each run on it.
The running track was funded in part through the Diocese of Chichester, and also through a grant from the Healthy Pupils Capital Fund. The grant came from £100 million of revenue generated from the Soft Drinks Industry Levy, a ring-fenced fund from the tax on sugary drinks. The fund is specifically for projects to improve children’s and young people’s physical and mental health by improving their access to facilities.
Mr Herbert said: “It was great to visit St Peter’s again and to see how it continues to develop. The new running track is a great addition to the school’s facilities and it was good to hear how the children benefit from using it.
“I was a strong supporter of the sugar tax, and it was good to see that money being used in my constituency to promote healthy lifestyles for young people.”
1. Photograph: Nick Herbert with members of the St Peter’s School council on the new ‘St Peter’s Metres’ running track.
2. To read more about Children’s Mental Health Week see https://www.childrensmentalhealthweek.org.uk/.
3. To read more about the Soft Drinks Industry Levy and Healthy Pupils Capital Fund see https://www.gov.uk/government/news/soft-drinks-industry-levy-comes-into-effect.
4. To read Nick Herbert’s news ‘MP back Jamie Oliver’s sugar campaign’ see https://www.nickherbert.com/news-releases/2018/1/24/mp-backs-jamie-olivers-sugar-campaign.