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The Great Big Walk lands in Bolton

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Release date:
1 6 2017

Five teams of walkers have begun their journey across the UK to celebrate the great projects that bring people and communities together. The Great Big Walk – a new initiative made possible by the National Lottery and run by Eden Communities – sees a dedicated group of walkers and their supporters visit a different local project every day. They will get the chance to see first-hand how National Lottery players are helping to create stronger communities across villages, towns and cities all over the UK.

One of the inspiring walkers, Olivia Cosgrove, stopped in ­­­­­­­­­­­Bolton to meet some of the incredible people who go the extra mile to bring communities together. Olivia has been blown away by the support and commitment she has seen along the way.

“I really enjoyed meeting Urban Outreach in Bolton. It’s a fantastic example of a community-led initiative that is a constant and quiet pulse through the entire community. They’re an absolute credit to the community and themselves,” Olivia said.

Urban Outreach, a Big Lottery Fund supported project that helps the homeless, runaway kids, struggling families and ex offenders turn their lives around, welcomed the special visit. A group of volunteers and staff was on hand to talk about the Friends of Fun Food project, which restores fun into food and healthy eating, creating great communities for Bolton.

“It’s been fantastic to be able to host The Great Big Walk at Urban Outreach today. Our families have really enjoyed the opportunity and it’s been great to be a part of such an amazing initiative which connects people and celebrates community,” Steve Bottrill, Deputy Chief Executive at Urban Outreach, said.

Each team of walkers will travel to five corners of the UK, finishing on Sunday 18 June to join celebrations for The Big Lunch - the UK's annual get together for neighbours to spend a few hours of fun and friendship. Following last year’s event, which saw 7 million people take part, this year promises to be even bigger. Memorable events, both big and small, will be held in local neighbourhoods to foster community connections.

“The Great Big Walk is celebrating and recognising how people have created projects which make their communities stronger,” said Joe Ferns, Big Lottery Fund’s UK Knowledge & Portfolio Director. “Thanks to money generated by National Lottery players, we’re bringing people together in happier and better connected communities.”

Notes to Editors

For more about featured walker Olivia Cosgrove, visit https://www.edenprojectcommunities.com/walker-profile-olivia-cosgrove

Photo caption:

Walker Olivia Cosgrove (seated, centre), fellow walker Noel Johnston (standing, left) with Urban Outreach Deputy Chief Executive Steve Bottrill (standing, right), volunteers and beneficiaries.

About The Great Big Walk

  • The Great Big Walk is an idea from the Eden Project, funded by the National Lottery and supporters including Pears Foundation and Prince of Wales’s Charitable Foundation.
  • The Great Big Walk has received in kind support from YHA for accommodation, and Renault with a fleet of electric support vehicles.
  • The Great Big Walk connects people and communities, inviting them to take part in the UK’s annual get-together for neighbours by hosting their own Big Lunch on Sunday 18 June 2017.
  • For more information visit www.thegreatbigwalk.com

About the Big Lottery Fund

  • The Big Lottery Fund is the largest funder of community activity in the UK. It puts people in the lead to improve their lives and communities, often through small, local projects. It is responsible for giving out 40% of the money raised by National Lottery players for good causes.
  • Last year it awarded £583 million and supported around 12,000 projects across the UK for health, education, environment and charitable purposes. Since June 2004 it has awarded over £8 billion to projects that change the lives of millions of people.
  • For more information visit www.biglotteryfund.org.uk