Competition hots up between North East businesses this summer

Colleagues from Offshore Renewable Energy Catapult’s National Renewable Energy Centre in Blyth are just one of the businesses across South East Northumberland and Tyne & Wear strapping on their bike helmets and putting on their walking shoes to compete in a sustainable travel competition this summer.

Organised by Go Smarter, the North East sustainable travel initiative, the competition encourages people to save money, help the environment and reduce congestion by leaving the car at home for the commute to work.

Running until Friday 29 August, teams will be logging the number of miles they travel to and from work by bike or on foot, instead of taking the car. Teams from businesses in South East Northumberland and Tyne & Wear will be competing against each other, earning points for each mile travelled and going head to head to win a prize worth up to £1000.

Peter Greaves, Team Cycle-Path representative at Catapult Blyth said: “Quite a few of us at Catapult Blyth already bike and walk to work but this initiative has been a great way of getting more colleagues involved. As well as creating a bit of healthy competition and a fun challenge in the workplace it also complements our business ethos promoting greater use of renewable energy alternatives.”

Councillor Nick Forbes, Transport Lead for the Combined Authority, says: “Encouraging smarter travel, such as walking or cycling, has been shown to be an important factor in business success and strengthening the local economy, resulting in reduced congestion on the roads and healthier, happier employees.”

Businesses can still take part in the Go the Extra Mile challenge by visitingwww.gosmarter.co.uk to register their team. Teams of up to 10 colleagues can take part.  Participants must then log the number of miles they travel to and from work using either the free Stravel app – that can be downloaded for iOS and Android devices – or by logging them manually atwww.gosmarter.co.uk

Points are earned for each mile completed and can be redeemed against a range of special offers and prizes. The individual team that completes the largest number of miles will win a team night out up to the value of £1000 or £100 of supermarket shopping vouchers for each member of the winning team.

Councillor Ian Swithenbank, Northumberland County Council’s Member for Streetcare and Environment said: “I would encourage all businesses in the south east of the county to take part in the challenge, which is a great way to promote healthier and more sustainable methods of commuting to work.”

For more information about Go Smarter’s ‘Go the Extra Mile’ business challenge, visit www.gosmarter.co.uk,www.Facebook.com/YourGoSmarter or @GoSmarterToWork. 

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