Excellence in Walking

intu Walking Month

Because intu is always looking for creative and bold things to do, we approached National walking month from our unique perspective. Logging daily steps using the World Walking app the group collectively ‘walked’ from: 1) Lands End to John O'Groats (603 miles); 2) Vienna to Paris (768 miles); 3) The Adriatic Coast (1,140 miles); 4) Barcelona to Rome (843 miles). We thought that Lands End to John O’Groats would be enough of a challenge, but as always our teams achieved more than we expected. Steps were recorded across the intu shopping centres and offices. We were able to encourage staff to go on guided historical walks of Westminster, to enjoy weekly woodland walks and picnics at intu Trafford Centre and to take part in the Walk 100 stories event at intu Lakeside. 18 members of staff from intu Eldon Squand intu Metrocentre tackl

Local Authority contact details

Mat Kiely - Sustainable Travel Manager - intu mat.kiely@intu.co.uk 07553 377665

Who was involved & what was their role?

103 members of staff joined a World Walking group during National Walking Month. They walked an incredible 7,479,936 steps. 18 members of staff from intu Eldon Square and intu Metrocentre tackled Ben Nevis, helping to raise £3,000 for charity. intu Walking Month included a wide range of abilities both physical and professional. Everyone has been motivated by the challenge.

Details of cost budget, sources of funding

Guided Walks at 40 Broadway cost c£600. This was funded through the corporate responsibility budget. A small amount of staff time was also covered by the relevant centres. The Ben Nevis weekend was part funded by the intu corporate responsibility budget and by staff

How was it developed?

intu supported Walking Month in 2016 and we used this as a platform to utilise the World Walking app and encourage increased participation in 2017. A number of walks and events were organised and these were brought together through the app so that, collectively, we could see how many steps had been undertaken and how far the group were able to walk. This collective grouping helped to make the World Walking app more of a challenge and encouraged 103 staff to record their walks.

What was the outcome, including information on future plans - one-off, on-going, develop further?

Nearly 7.5million steps were undertaken. Staff were more physically active and actually looked for reasons to go out for a walk. People discovered locations (sometimes on their doorstep) that they never knew existed and facts about their local area that they never knew. Most of our centres now have regular walks or links to walks that people can join. We are even looking to introduce ‘walking meetings’ at some locations. Supporting infrastructure such as showers, lockers and changing areas are being provided at centres through the workplace travel grants and our travel plan process. In 2018 we will be looking to increase the steps undertaken in 2017 and to get even more bold and innovative with the events that staff can get involved in. We will also look at offering increased incentives to encourage more walking.

How does this initiative or project meet the criteria?

intu Walking Month was a successful adaptation of what was promoted and supported in 2016. Introducing the innovative World Walking app focused staff to walk as much as possible. Participants increased from around 60 people in 2016 to 103 people in 2017. As always, intu were able to encourage participants from all areas and levels of the company. Showing the distance walked and the locations that were visited was a really clever way to spur people on. Utilising internal communications enabled us to engage directly with staff at all levels. Organising events at various times of the day ensured increased participation and the ability to record individual walks through the World Walking app enabled us to reach out to a wide audience. We are encouraging staff to record and monitor their steps and walks through the World Walking app and other mobile applications. Few shopping centres would allocate the time and resource needed to support Walking Month, but at intu we do!

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