Fun, free outdoor activities on offer with Parklives return

Published: Wednesday, 12th April 2017

Parks across Birmingham are set to play host to thousands of fun, free activity sessions as ParkLives returns to the city for a fourth year.

Delivered by teams from Birmingham City Council in partnership with Coca-Cola Great Britain, ParkLives sessions help bring local parks to life with activities that help to bring communities together and improve wellbeing.

Taking place daily in more than 100 parks and green spaces across Birmingham including Lickey Hills Country Park and Handsworth Park, activities will range from Tai Chi and bushcraft to zumba and nature play, and are designed to appeal to everyone, regardless of ability or experience.

The programme has been planned and developed in co-production with local communities within the city, and will see new activities such as open water swimming, dodgeball and even Pickle Ball – a mix of badminton, tennis and table tennis – feature on the timetable this spring and summer.

The fun starts this week with Easter egg hunts taking place at Handsworth Park and Aston Park (various times between Monday 10th – Friday 21st April). Families will hunt for colourful eggs hidden amongst the natural beauty of their local parks. Instructors at Handsworth Park will also be taking the stress out of learning to ride a bike over the Easter holidays by hosting two special ‘Ditch the Stabiliser’ sessions (Wednesday 12th and Wednesday 19th April).

Gaynor Roberts, ParkLives Programme Manager at Birmingham City Council said: “Thousands of Birmingham residents will benefit from ParkLives again this year. It’s a great opportunity for people to enjoy their local parks, meet new people or spend quality time together as a family.

“ParkLives is great fun, we see a lot of friendship groups forming and plenty of smiling faces after each session. As well as getting people outdoors, it also plays a serious role in helping to address the social and mental wellbeing problems that many people face.

“In 2016, we had more than 85,000 attendances in ParkLives sessions. Many of those took part in the most deprived areas of the city* as our free sessions across the region make it easy for all members of the community to get involved, who may otherwise see cost and a lack of opportunities in their local community as a barrier to being outdoors.”

Sessions last for around one hour and are hosted by trained, friendly and passionate leaders and volunteers from the local area. Activities are group-based, and everyone can go at their own pace.

Session leader, Mick Sherratt, from Birmingham will be leading running sessions over the summer. He said: “I’ve been holding running sessions with ParkLives for three years now and love that I’m helping people to get out of the house, try a new hobby and make friends along the way. In my time, I’ve even coached a few next-door neighbours that didn’t know each other before and are now running buddies. To me, that’s what these sessions are all about and I can’t wait to kick-start ParkLives again this year.

ParkLives is part of a £20 million commitment by Coca-Cola Great Britain to invest in community-based programmes.

Now in its fourth year, ParkLives runs in 10 cities nationwide as well as reaching many more locations through a partnership with StreetGames, the long-standing charity partner of Coca-Cola Great Britain that brings sports and activities to the doorsteps of disadvantaged communities across the UK.

Liz Lowe, ParkLives lead at Coca-Cola Great Britain said: “It’s brilliant to see ParkLives going from strength to strength in Birmingham as more and more people get involved. This is really testament to the fantastic team of local session leaders and volunteers helping people to try new activities, make new friends and discover the wonderful green spaces they have on their doorstep. With even more activities on offer this year, and all still completely free of charge, we hope that even more people will join in and spread the word.”

To save a space at a free activity, and check out a postcode-led local activity finder go to www.parklives.com

*Source: ukactive, March 2017

ENDS

Notes to editors

About ParkLives:

ParkLives is an initiative from Coca-Cola Great Britain, launched in 2014, run in partnership with local authorities across the UK. The programme offers thousands of fun, free activities in local parks, encouraging people across the UK to enjoy the green spaces in their local community.

Birmingham is one of 10 cities taking part in ParkLives 2017. It is joined by Dundee, Glasgow, Newcastle, Manchester, Stoke-on-Trent, Swansea (including Neath Port Talbot and Bridgend local authorities), Nottingham, the London Borough of Newham and Southampton.

ParkLives activities will take place in the following parks in Birmingham:

 

Park   Location
Aston Park B6 6HR
Balaam’s Wood Public Open Space B45 0BH
Balsall Heath Forum B12 8LS
Balsall Heath Park B12 8BA
Billesley Common B13 0PT
Bloomsbury Park B7 5BD
Bloomsbury Park/ The POD B7 5BD
Bournville Park B30 1UG
Brookvale Park B23 7YT
Burbury Park B19 1QH
Cadbury Club B30 2LU
Calthorpe Park B5 7NZ
Chamberlain Gardens B16 8JL
Cofton Park B45 8UN
Conker Island B44 0QN
Cotteridge Park B30 2HN
Dawberry Fields Park B14 6RP
Fox Hollies Park B27 7HA
Handsworth Park B20 2RS
Harvest Fields Park B75 5TJ
Holders Lane and Pebble Mill Fields B13 8NL
Kings Heath Park B14 7TQ
Kings Norton Park B38 8ND
Ladywood Health & Community Centre B16 8RP
Laurel Rd community sports Centre B21 9PB
Ley Hill Recreation Ground B31 1PN
Lickey Hills Country Park B45 8DX
Manor Farm Park B31 1AB
Maryvale Community Centre B44 9SR
Mount St Rec B7 5QT
Oaklands Park B25 8FD
Perry Hall Park B42 1RP
Queens Park B17 9UA
Rowheath Pavilion B30 1HH
Senneleys Park B32 3LJ
Sheldon Country Park B26 3XN
Small Heath Park B10 0LP
Small Heath WBC B10 0LP
Sparkhill Park B11 4HB
Summerfield Park B16 0EU
Sunset and Moonlit B15 2BL
Sutton Park B73 6LJ
Victoria Common B31 2JR
Walkers Heath Park B38 0BL
Ward End Park B8 3LS
West Heath Park B31 3DA
Westley Vale Millennium Green B27 6EG

 

About Coca-Cola Great Britain

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