SCORES of youngsters enjoyed a stroll through the area's most beautiful countryside as they made their way to school.

Belmont Primary School staged a walking to school week as part of its work to promote healthy living.

And come rain or shine, pupils and parents could be seen each morning putting their best foot forward to enjoy the benefits of the exercise.

Headteacher Judith Peel said: "The school held a healthy travel to school week during which we asked pupils to walk to school or to park and stride.

"We had locations in which parents could park and then walk. The first day it poured it down but they continued to walk to school.

"We even had staff who would park and stride, parking at Tockholes or the top of Rivington.

"Working commitments meant some parents were unable to walk to school, but those children took part in exercise when the arrived. They would do circuits and skipping."

Mrs Peel said the initiative was to encourage children to lead healthy lives.

She said: "Each child was given a passport and for every day they walked members of the school council would go round and stamp it.

"As well as being a healthy activity it had a social element too, as children would speak to their parents as they walked and also meet friends and have a conversation with them. They would come into school with pink cheeks and feeling exhilarated.

"We have had quite a few children who did not walk to school before who now are."

Children said they preferred to walk than come to school by car.

Erica Rawlinson, who is in year six, said: "You feel healthier because you haven’t just been sitting in a car. When you walk you can speak to your mum and dad more, because they don’t have to concentrate on the road as much."

Classmate DJ Sherman said: "It makes you feel more energetic when you walk in the morning because you are moving and have time to wake up."