Mayor launches South Yorkshire challenge at parkrun


Published 4 December 2023 at 5:14pm

Mayor Oliver Coppard has announced he will run each of South Yorkshire’s twelve parkruns, in a challenge to get people moving more for the 'Year of Active Travel'.

Launched at the Endcliffe Park parkrun, the Mayor’s challenge at parkrun encourages residents to get involved by walking, jogging, running or volunteering at any six parkrun events in South Yorkshire, aiming to strengthen community bonds and enhance overall health and well-being.

Mayor Coppard’s next parkrun is on Saturday 16th December at Sandall Park, Doncaster.

The initiative aligns with the broader mission to undertake a ‘Year of Active Travel’, contributing to making South Yorkshire the healthiest region in the UK, promoting physical activity, green spaces, social inclusion and community engagement. Upon completing the challenge, participants tracking their progress across the region’s events can claim a limited edition commemorative t-shirt.

Mayor Oliver Coppard said, "A healthier, wealthier, happier South Yorkshire is my absolute mission and this challenge, spanning each of our region’s parkruns, is just one of the ways I want to actively – in the most literal sense - bring our communities together to help that mission.

"Collectively, we can make strides for South Yorkshire to one day become the healthiest region in the UK whilst also fostering our unrivalled community spirit.

"I’ll be running every single parkrun across South Yorkshire over the Year of Active Travel - including Sandall Park parkrun in Doncaster on Saturday 9 December - and I’d love as many of you to join me in this challenge by getting involved in six of our region’s events, celebrating our health and our community.”

Parkrun, a free, volunteer-organized event, aligns with the Year of Active Travel's ambition to encourage movement, activity and healthier lives. Participants are encouraged to walk, cycle or take public transport to parkrun events as part of the Year of Active Travel.

South Yorkshire’s Active Travel Commissioner, Ed Clancy OBE, said: “Mayor Oliver Coppard’s challenge really captures what we’re trying to achieve through the Year of Active Travel – it’s about enabling choice when it comes to moving around, in the hope that that creates a happier, healthier community.

“I’ve embarked on my fair share of challenges over the years, but I’m not a runner. So, it’s probably a good thing that joining us on this challenge has nothing to do with endurance or competition. Everyone is welcome to be part of the team, whether you’re walking, jogging, running, volunteering or a mixture.”

Impressive statistics underscore the impact of parkrun in South Yorkshire, with over 6% of the population registered and cumulative distances covering nearly 5 million kilometres – equivalent to travelling to the moon and back six times.

Mayor Coppard’s challenge supports the parkrun Global Research Board's objectives, focusing on understanding health impacts, community engagement, and motivational factors associated with parkrun participation.


Last Updated: 08/12/2023

Published In: Mayor, Active Travel, Featured