Police staff smash the Olympic mark

North Tyneside and Northumberland Area Commands' own Olympic winners.
North Tyneside and Northumberland Area Commands' own Olympic winners.

STAFF at Northumbria Police are celebrating the end of their own ‘Olympic challenge’.

More than 400 members from the workforce matched the number of miles the Olympic Torch covered as it was carried around the country.

And they went several steps further as members of both North Tyneside and Northumberland area commands exceeded the 8,000-mile target by more than 13,000 miles – walking and running a total of 21,613 miles in just four weeks.

The ‘Olympic Torch Challenge’ was part of the NHS’s Workforce Workfit programme, which encouraged businesses and public sector organisations to create more opportunities for staff to get involved in physical activity through work.

Under the scheme North Tyneside area command was one of just six businesses/organisations in the north east to receive funding for the Olympic linked event securing £5,000.

Sarah Dodds, lead advocate for the Better Health at Work – Continuing Excellence Award, and who is based at North Tyneside and Northumberland area commands, said: “We’re so pleased with the efforts made by everyone who took part in this event and tremendously proud of their achievements.

“It’s good to know both our operational officers and members of police staff are keeping fit and healthy both at work and in their own leisure time.”

She added: “Of course without the award from NHS North East, with which we bought the pedometers to encourage staff to walk more and increase their personal fitness, this would not have been possible.”

Gold, silver and bronze trophies and medals were given to the winners at the end of the event with the winning gold individual prize for 389.39 miles going to police community support officer Tim Slaney.

The winning gold team were a group of detectives from Wallsend, who covered 1,147.03 miles, and the challenge’s winning police cadet was Isaac Patterson who completed 196.8 miles.

Sarah said they would still be encouraging staff to continue exercising and using the pedometers.

Chief Inspector Mark Anastasi, from North Tyneside area command, who also took part in the challenge, made the presentations to all the medal and trophy winners.