THERE are over 200 activities available this month as part of the Barnsley Walking Festival to get residents walking in May.

From one of the many friendly walking groups, guided walks with experts and walking sport sessions, there’s a packed schedule with plenty of variety to help encourage everyone to get out and get active with many of the events free to attend.

A council spokesperson said: “It's a great chance to meet new people and have some fun but if you can't make it to any of the events, or they're not for you, you can go for a walk with friends or family in your local area or at one of our many fabulous parks and greenspaces.

“Alternatively, you can try incorporating walking into your daily life. It's easier than you think! You can leave the car at home and walk to the shops instead, or get off the bus a stop earlier, for example.”

The festival will also cover Mental Health Awareness Week, which is encouraging people to move more for their mental health.

Physical activity, however small, has been proven to be good for both your mental and physical health. Every active minute counts and physical activity can be whatever you want it to be – going for a walk, playing organised sports or even having a dance in your kitchen while you make the tea.

Matt O'Neill, Executive Director for Growth and Sustainability said: "Walking is one of the easiest ways to get active; it's free, a great way to explore our parks, heritage sites and other beautiful parts of the borough and also helps you to move more, live well and feel better.

"With two Bank Holidays, a half-term and Mental Health Awareness Week all taking place during May, it's great to see the Barnsley Walking Festival return with a range of activities across the whole of Barnsley.

"Whether it's a guided walk at Wentworth Castle Gardens, trying a walking sport for the first time or the multi-sensory walks at Cannon Hall and Worsbrough Mill, we believe the festival provides something for everyone."

For a full timetable of events, go to