Swindon AdvertiserFestival gets off to a very healthy start (From Swindon Advertiser)

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Festival gets off to a very healthy start

Swindon Advertiser: Festival gets off to a very healthy start Festival gets off to a very healthy start

A NEW health-focussed Old Town Festival took advantage of Lethbridge Primary School’s annual fun run on Saturday with a little help from Toy Story’s Woody.

As temperatures soared past 21OC, children and their parents sped off down Westlecot Road to start the well-known race, but attention was snatched by Pixar’s most famous cowboy.

Woody had been invited by organisers of the Old Town Festival to shoot the starting gun for runners, as a preview to its own inaugural family fancy dress fun run this weekend.

Gerry Hannon, of the Old Town Festival committee, said the promotional opportunity was a launch pad for the festival’s attention on health and leisure this year.

“Next weekend we will be launching our first family fancy dress fun run,” he said. “Woody was, of course, wearing his normal clothes on the start line on Saturday, but we hoped him turning up would inspire the families and kids to come along in their fancy dress next weekend.

“It’s the beginnings of integrating health and leisure activities into the festival.

“The simple reason for the festival is it’s great for people to enjoy themselves, having a beer, but the other side is some of the health benefits.

“There will be some more leisure and active participation for people this year at the festival. “We hope to keep building that aspect over the coming years. “It takes three years for new ideas to ground in, so we will only know how successful it was in another three years.”

Woody will be in Wood Street on Saturday, June 28 to launch the first official day of events at the festival.

From 10am there will be a people’s parade in the street which will process into the Lawn Woods. Among the events there will be waiters’ races, street theatre from Commonweal School, juggling and the official festival opening outside 20/20 at the King’s.

The fancy dress run will take place in the Lawn Woods. Entrants can just turn up on the day.

For the third year in a row the first girl home in the Lethbridge fun run, was eight-year-old Lydia Smith, of Westlecot Road, who was pushed all the way by her father Jason.

The race is organised by the same people who pour their time in the Lethbridge 10k, run which took place earlier this month.

Together the two runs have made just over £4,000 for the school, says organiser Katie Went.

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