Smart Swaps winners leave the biscuit

[photo] Richmond Hill Primary School pupil five-year-old Tarragon Wager makes her pledge

An ambitious initiative to see Leeds people swap unhealthy food and drink for healthier alternatives has seen record uptake this year, as individuals and organisations pledged to leave out the biscuits and snack on something less sweet.

With over 6,250 swaps pledged, thousands of people have added their support to the campaign. The numbers signing up are significantly higher than other surrounding and comparable districts and Leeds City Council Public Health team believes it can help children live healthier long term lives.

Emma Strachan, Health Improvement Specialist (Food) with Leeds City Council Public Health team, said:

“The campaign has been encouraging families to get swapping to reduce the amount of fat and sugar we eat. One of the easiest ways to feel good is to make some simple swaps to what we eat and do. You can still join us in swapping together and making it fun! It’s easy to get involved.”

Councillor Lisa Mulherin, Chair of the Leeds and Health and Wellbeing Board said:

“It is great to see so many families and children getting involved in Smart Swaps. We know that a healthy diet can make a huge difference to people’s lives and getting a good start with good food and drink early in life can play an important part in our commitment to make Leeds the best city for health and wellbeing.”

Julie Peters, a teacher from Richmond Hill Primary School said:

“Children have been coming into school who have had breakfast instead of nothing before school as a result of the campaign. All the kids love the swapping and have lots of ideas about what they can do to make a smart swap.”

Tarragon Wager, a pupil at Richmond Hill Primary School aged five, pledged to make a swap ‘from doughnuts and spicy sweets to more fruit and vegetables’.

As part of the campaign, both individual and organisational prizes for encouraging swaps were awarded. Individual prizes included a family pass to Home Farm at Temple Newsam and a family swim pass.


Notes for editors

The team prize winners are:

• Leeds Rugby Foundation Smart Swaps assembly plus special extra prizes - Whingate Primary School

• PE start up pack - Victoria Primary School

• Summer school sports pack – Five Lane’s Primary School

• After School Play pack – Richmond Hill Primary School

• £100 voucher for Red Hall Nurseries – Kerr Mackie Primary School

• Ministry of Food Cooking Taster session for up 10 children – Colton Primary School

• Ministry of Food Taster Session up to 8 adults – Asha Neighbourhood Project

• Cooking starter kit – Moortown Children’s Centre

• £50 shopping Voucher – Inside Out Group – Health For All

More information about the Smart Swaps challenge in Leeds is available at: http://www.leedsletschange.co.uk/smartswaps

Issued by:

Phil Morcom

Communications and Marketing team

Leeds City Council

4th Floor West, Civic Hall, Leeds, LS1 1UR

Mobile: 0772 227 5370

Tel: 0113 224 3602

Fax: 0113 247 4736