HUNDREDS of energetic primary school children put on their running shoes and took part in a fun-run around Towneley Park yesterday.

More than 800 youngsters from across 22 schools in Burnley were joined by the British 10,000m track champion Jonny Mellor and took part in the ‘Go Run For Fun’ one-mile dash around the park.


The ‘Go Run For Fun Foundation’ was set up by Jim Ratcliffe, owner of Scottish manufacturing company, INEOS, to transform youngsters lifestyles, encourage more activity and healthy wellbeing.

More than 109 runs have taken place nationwide and have encouraged more than 107,000 children to take part.

The company donated £1.5million to the charity over a three year period to help fund activities to get children running.

Mr Mellor, said: “I was really looking forward to this year’s Go Run For Fun event in Towneley Park.

“It was my first run and it was really exciting to see everyone cheering on all the young runners.

“They definitely benefited from the cheering and they will have benefited from the run.”

Jim Ratcliffe, owner of INEOS, said: “I’m passionate about getting as many children running early in their lives. The idea is simple, to get children out of the house having fun.

“It is not rocket science, running is the basis of so many great sports.

“If our children can catch the running bug early, they’re more likely to stick to it.

"And this can only lead to them having more active and healthier lifestyles in the future.”

Cllr Mark Townsend, leader of Burnley Council, said: “ I think the run was a fantastic idea and it was fantastic to see so many children take part and I encourage these sort of events to continue.

“It’s even more important to see children exercise coming after recent statistics showed a high level of obesity in East Lancashire and particular Burnley."

“So seeing children want to take part in exercise and take part in physical activity is fantastic and I fully support it.”