People living in the Lowestoft area who may be unable to get outside to get active are invited to join in the Lowestoft Mile, a new virtual walking project.
Funded by the Lowestoft and Northern Parishes Community Partnership, the Lowestoft Mile currently comprises four virtual walks around the local area, filmed using 360o virtual reality and drone footage.
Developed by the East Suffolk Communities Team, all the walks are approximately one mile and have been created especially for people who are unable to leave their homes, including elderly people and those with health conditions. However, they are available for everyone to enjoy. The walks, which have a voiceover explaining local facts and interesting information, can be viewed on any device with a Wi-Fi connection. The videos can also be used with virtual reality goggles which work with a smartphone to give the user an immersive experience.
If able, viewers are encouraged to walk on the spot, take seated steps or just move their arms whilst watching the walk.
Danny Steel, Vice Chair of the Lowestoft and Northern Parishes Community Partnership, said: “Many people, especially those who live alone, have struggled with the lack of social contact caused by the coronavirus restrictions. Social isolation and loneliness can be detrimental to people’s mental and physical health and it is hoped that these virtual walks will be enjoyed by people who are unable to get outside, such as those living in residential care. The walks will enable them to experience the outside world and ‘visit’ local places even whilst they are unable to leave home and to get more active if possible.”
The routes currently available are:
Nicholas Everitt Park
a Lound circular walk
the Claremont Pier and Kensington Gardens
and Lowestoft Lighthouse to Ness Point.
To view the walks, please visit www.thelowestoftmile.co.uk
Following additional funding received from the Carlton Colville and Kessingland Community Partnership, two further walks will be added shortly.
Other towns and villages in the district are welcome to add walks in their areas. To discuss, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Community partnerships are an innovative way for the council, partners and communities to work together to focus on local priorities. There are eight Community Partnerships across the district - find out more at www.eastsuffolk.gov.uk/community-partnerships