High Sheriff Awards Hertfordshire Health Walk Team

High Sheriff presents Mill End First Steps Health Walk Team.

On Wednesday 3rd July High Sheriff of Hertfordshire Annie Brewster JP presented Mill End First Steps Health Walk team with a Health Walks Making a Difference High Sheriff Award with a special mention to Nan Millette.


A much-needed Mill End First Steps walk was launched in early 2017 in partnership with Three Rivers District Council and since then a Grade 1 walk has been established too. These much-loved walks provide a weekly focus for the loyal and regular walkers as well as regularly attracting new walkers, and they have been a real game changer for the area.


The original First Steps walk survived due to the resilience of volunteer Nan Millette who trained as a Health Walk Leader in March 2017 and in the earlier years she was often the sole leader. Without fail Nan saw every week how much the walkers not only looked forward to the walk but depended on them and so continued with the walk in the hope they could eventually attract more leaders and they did.


Over the last 7 years Bob Sherren too has been an invaluable ad hoc volunteer often saving the day by stepping in at short notice and Jane Castellot who joined the walks in 2022 makes herself available every week unless she is away as she is passionate about helping those that need the walk the most. Nan also ‘recruited’ her husband Phil to join the team as soon as he retired and he has already supported over 90 walks.


Without the dedication of all the Mill End team (which includes Julie, Neil, Chris and Anne) the two weekly walks would not be possible.


The two walks combined have an average of 16 walkers who decide on the day the level they can do depending on their health on any given week. Having a choice of grades has become essential for the walkers to be able to attend a weekly walk.


The walks are really at the heart of the Mill End community and the Mill End Community Centre and its Café are great supporters of the Health Walks. Volunteers and walkers socialise in the café after the walk and have been getting together every Christmas after the walk since 2017 to have some refreshments and fun thanks to the efforts of the Mill End Café.


Since March 2017 to the present day Mill End Health Walks  have provided 365 walks for 113 walkers with a combined attendance of 2633, which is something to be hugely proud of!


The High Sheriff of Hertfordshire, Annie Brewster JP said:


“What a fantastic community feel this walk had. Nan just oozed such positivity and I can see why she has made such a success of these walks. The participants were so proud of their community spirit and seemed to really look out for each other. Thank you to all the hard working volunteers who have helped make these walks such a success and a positive weekly social gathering for the local residents, some who were not so local and made the effort to get the bus to be at the walks!”


Thank you to Herts County Council for their continued support of Hertfordshire Health Walks. If you’d like to get involved with your local Health Walk by taking part or volunteering, you can find all the local Hertfordshire walks here: www.hertfordshire.gov.uk/healthwalks

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If you have a generic question please email the Herts Sport & Physical Activity Partnership team: hspinfo@herts.ac.uk