A KEEN runner and cyclist clocked up the equivalent of 2,500 miles' worth of Beat the Street points.

The only day Greg Wells wasn’t out on his bike cycling between Beat the Street boxes this autumn was when he travelled to Thorpe Park with his daughter.

But even then, the 59-year-old seriously considered heading out to collect some late-night points when he got home from the Surrey theme park at 10pm.

Greg was crowned winner of the individual category in the most recent Beat the Street competition at the weekend.

Over six weeks the campaign turned Swindon into a giant game, with players given points every time they touched a contactless card down on one of hundreds of Beat the Street 'boxes' attached to lampposts spaced at roughly mile intervals across the town.

Greg claimed first prize with more than 80,000 Beat the Street points: “I won it last year with 25,000 points. I thought I could defend the title.

“By day two I became obsessed and just kept going.

“There were a lot of early mornings. I like a sports challenge and it gets you round parks and other green spaces you wouldn’t normally see. There are some really nice car-free paths and areas.”

Overall, 26,000 people took part in the game – clocking up the equivalent of around 250,000 miles over six weeks. Participation was slightly down on the hugely successful first year in 2018 when 31,000 people signed up.

Stuart Arthur, who runs Swindon Beat the Street, said of the game’s popularity: “It involves the whole community. There are grandparents taking kids to school. It’s not just about kids – it’s about the whole community.

“Beat the Street is about building short bursts of activity into everyday life.”

He said it was still too early to say if Beat the Street would be returning for a third year in 2020.

The game, which is the brainchild of GP Dr William Bird, has proved popular with schools.

This year, Haydonleigh Primary School claimed the top spot. Andy Golesworthy, 64, from Lawn, donated his points to the school – which is attended by his grandchildren.

“I think it’s great,” he said of the campaign. “It’s surprising how many people you see out. I ride a bike and run a lot. But it was getting me to ride further and go out when the weather was miserable.”

Walking group Step Out Swindon was the leaderboard-topping community group and Lydiard parkrun the sports team with the highest number of points.

Emma Sperring, parkrun event director, said: “Beat the Street is something anyone can do. They can walk, run or cycle between each box.”

For full results, visit: www.beatthestreet.me/swindon