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University of Surrey has been awarded the Physical Activity Excellence Award after demonstrating good practice in increasing physical activity engagement across its population.

The award was created by British Universities & Colleges Sport (BUCS) and the Physical Activity and Health Board in 2017 and it was announced at last week’s BUCS Winter Summit that Surrey is one of 10 institutions to submit successful applications this year and join the six current award holders.

Each institution was assessed across four pillars; strategy and planning, insight and research, partnerships and collaboration, and implementation and delivery.

University of Surrey has met the criteria after showcasing Surrey Sports Park’s strategic vision to transform people’s lives through sport and physical activity and by demonstrating how this is aligned with BUCS and Active Surrey’s targets.

The sheer volume of headline projects and events also demonstrated how Surrey has increased physical activity engagement throughout the population. These projects have included disABILITY Week, SurreyMoves+, GradSport and Learn To from a student perspective, alongside community events such as Surrey Youth Games and the Club4 programme.

Regular feedback from participants throughout the year has enabled Surrey Sports Park to gain frequent insight into its programmes and this level of research also helped the University on its way to earning this award.

Collaboration with key departments across the University was also instrumental as Team Surrey notably collaborated with the marketing and catering departments at the Sports Park as well as the Widening Participation team at the University.

Surrey Sports Park’s Sport Development & Performance Manager Tom Edwards said: “There is a lot of great work going on in the sector and we are thrilled to be recognised for the award alongside these other universities.

“It was brilliant to be able to present a number of our student and community programmes to BUCS, from our disABILITY Week and SurreyMoves+ behaviour change app to the Surrey Youth Games and Holiday Activity & Food camps for children on free school meals.

“Thank you to everyone who contributed to this success – without the support from a number of departments at Surrey Sports Park and University of Surrey this wouldn’t have been possible.”

BUCS Development Manager Sean Harris said: “University of Surrey should be extremely proud on achieving the Physical Activity Excellence Award. They evidenced a high standard of work across all four of the pillars and demonstrated a sustained impact for their students engaging in physical activity.

“I have seen first hand the great work that the team at the University of Surrey are delivering, none more so than their BUCS Active projects and they have always been forthcoming to present their case studies at member events to support the sharing of best practice. A huge congratulations to Tom and the team, and I look forward to seeing their projects develop even further moving forward.”

Click HERE to read more on the BUCS website.