School pupils across Fife have been heading to local parks with some very special guests to celebrate the start of National Walking Month. 

Internet sensation Barbel Roerig - dubbed ‘Perth Scooter Gran’ – joined Fife favourite, Jamie the Jester and Strider, Living Streets’ mascot on Wednesday 3 May to kick off the series of Fife Park Walks at Beveridge Park in Kirkcaldy, Fife. 

Pupils from several Fife schools came along and joined in with a host of fun activities, including face painting, den building, a WOW treasure hunt, walking themed magic show with Jamie the Jester and a group dance with Strider.    

The event was also a chance to celebrate the success of the pupils who take part in WOW, the year-round walk to school challenge from Living Streets Scotland. WOW rewards children who walk to school at least once a week with collectable badges.

Walking to school is an easy and accessible way for children to fit physical activity into their day to ensure they remain fit and healthy. It also provides an opportunity for children to learn vital road safety skills and arrive at school feeling alert and ready to learn.  

In Scotland, prior to WOW and other initiatives, the number of children travelling actively to school was falling.  However, where schools have participated in initiatives like Living Streets’ WOW, they have seen an increase, with at times over 75 per cent of pupils regularly travelling to school by foot, scooter, cycle or park and stride.

John Mitchell, Service Manager, Asset Management and Sustainable Transport, Fife Council, said: 

“Fife Schools have been enthusiastically participating in WOW over recent years and has seen a rapid increase in engagement levels and levels of active travel.  These park events are a celebration of the achievement of these pupils for a job well done andl also provide an opportunity for further engagement to help encourage greater levels of participation in the future.”

This May, we want to get the whole of Scotland involved. We’re urging families up and down the country to give walking a go during National Walking Month. You’ll be amazed at what a difference a short blast of fresh air can do for you. It’s free, green and easy, and above all it works. We need to encourage children to get walking now and set in place healthy habits for the future.

Chris Thompson, Schools and Projects Coordinator, Living Streets Scotland
Scooter Gran and Strider
Strider takes to the stage