The intu Metrocentre Gateshead Schools Fun Run
Friday 25 May 2018
Saltwell Park, Gateshead 
10:00 am – 12:00 pm
 
Forty eight Gateshead Primary Schools have registered to take part in a mass fun run on Friday 25 May, the last day of school before the half-term break.
 
5,000 children between the ages of 3 and 11 will descend upon Saltwell Park to take part in The intu Metrocentre Gateshead Schools Fun Run, organised by the Gateshead School Sport Partnership (SSP).
 
Sporting star Craig Heap, Commonwealth Games Gold medal winning gymnast, and English and British champion will start the race, and this week Craig visited Oakfield Junior School in Low Fell, one of the schools taking part in the fun run, to put the runners through their paces, alongside Metrognomes Herbert and Rusty.
 
“Sport is by far one of the most important things you can do to prepare you for life” Craig said, “it’s unrealistic to think that we are going to win everything, but we can still have goals and achieve our personal best.” He went on to say: “If you can look in the mirror and say to yourself: ‘I’m not quite good enough yet’ – you will get there! Successful people are the ones who do their best day in, day out. You need to follow your passion as far as you can, just keep going with the sport and dare to be different!”
 
Oakfield Junior School’s Head Teacher Matthew Thompson, added:
 
“The Gateshead Fun Run is a date that we all look forward to. It’s an opportunity for the whole school to participate in the same singular sports event, regardless of ability, and enjoy competing among friends. The sense of achievement that each individual pupil shows on competition is a joy to see.”

Following the visit from Craig Heap alongside Herbert and Rusty, a year 4 pupil said:
 
“It was fantastic having an Olympic athlete in school, and the Metro Gnomes of course! Rusty and Herbert even came on the yard and joined us for play time! We had a really fun morning.”
 
A year five pupil commented:
 
“We love going to the fun run every year!  It’s always good to go to sporting events and we all enjoy racing against children from other schools around Gateshead.”
 
The fun run on 25 May will start with a mass warm up activity, led by intu Metrocentre’s popular mascots the Metrognomes, then participants will run in a number of waves of approximately 150-200, beginning with an elite 1 mile run featuring 180 competitors (aged 9-10).  Nursery and reception pupils (aged 3-5) will complete a slighter shorter course of 0.68 miles.
 
The first three girls and boys in the competitive race will be awarded medals, along with a £20 intu Gift Card.
 
In addition, every child who shows their participation certificate to intu Metrocentre’s customer service desk at the lower blue mall during half term week (26 May – 3 June) will go into a lucky draw to win a £100 intu Gift card, and a Namco family bowling pass. 
 
Gavin Prior, regional centre director for intu Metrocentre, commented:
 
“It’s a real pleasure to support Gateshead SSP with their mission to build an active and healthy future for children through PE and sport, and the intu Metrocentre Gateshead Fun Run is a real highlight in our event calendar.
 
“At intu Metrocentre we’re guided by our culture and values so being part of a fantastic event that’s at the heart of the community that we serve is something we feel passionately about. 

“It’s an enjoyable way to start the half-term week with fun outdoor activity with friends and family that can continue throughout the summer months, as we enjoy lighter nights and hopefully warmer weather – fingers crossed for some sunshine on the day itself!”
 
Kevin Hay, School Sport & Physical Activity Development Manager, Gateshead SSP and Event Manager, said: 
 
“This fun run is one of over 200 sporting events we organise for Gateshead schools each year, and one of our flagship events. We’re delighted to have intu Metrocentre on board again this year as our headline partner. We are always keen to work alongside local organisations to help realise our vision and increase participation levels within Gateshead Schools.”