STRONG healthy and resilient communities is the theme for Devon County Council’s county show marquee this year, where there will be a host of activities and information available for all ages.
This year’s Devon County Show takes place on Thursday May 22 to Saturday May 24, and the council’s marquee will be adjacent to the Devon Travel Academy (formerly the Devon Drivers’ Centre).
All the activities hosted under the marquee this year will be focusing on the five ways to wellbeing, a concept initiated by Devon Partnership Trust.
Trained staff from the Health Promotion Devon team - part of the Northern Devon Healthcare NHS Trust - will be on hand to give people a mini health MOT, complete with a body analysis machine.
There will also be information and advice covering a wide range of topics, including mental health, stopping smoking, healthy eating and dental hygiene.
There will also be help and information on an ambitious campaign to encourage organisations across the county to sign up and train their staff to become Dementia Friends.
Devon’s Library Services will be on hand to showcase two major projects – the Reading Well books on prescription scheme, which provides mood boosting books for low level mental health issues such as anxiety and depression.
They will also be giving a sneak preview of this year’s Summer Reading Challenge, which offers plenty of incentives and challenges for the younger generation to keep reading through the summer holidays.
Members of the Active Devon team will be available to offer advice and information about the range of physical activity and sport available across the County, and will be giving visitors to the marquee the chance to try out their ping pong skills with the launch of an exciting new programme being rolled out across Exeter throughout the summer.
Devon County Council Leader John Hart said: “This year’s stand will be a mixture of activities that include something for everyone, and I’d encourage anyone visiting the county show to pop in and see us.
“There is a strong emphasis on building strong, resilient and healthy communities this year, and our staff will be on hand to help people with information, advice and support.
“The five ways to wellbeing - Connect, Learn, be Active, take Notice and Get involved – are fundamental to our physical and mental health and are also important factors in healthy communities, and there will plenty of ideas and opportunities for people to get more engaged in their local community, as well as expert advice on staying healthy.”
The stand will also be showcasing this year’s Devon Tour of Britain stage which takes place on Thursday September 11, in association with the Tour of Britain, Exercise Science Consultancy and The Bike Shed, Exeter.
There will be a preview of the stage, which will cover 171km (106 miles) from Exmouth to Exeter via Dartmoor, and visitors to the show will have the opportunity to experience cycling some of the route without even leaving the showground, and pit their talents against the achievements of some of Britain’s top cyclists.
Travel Devon staff will offer advice for commuters on sustainable travel including walking and cycling; and members of the Devon Highways team, with partners from South West Highways showing the work carried out in response to the winter storms, the preventative maintenance they carry out.
The stand will illustrate how the teams responded to the weather on the night of Friday 14 Feb this year, when crews had to clear over 600 trees that had fallen overnight.
There will also be help and advice on flood management and building resilient communities - and a Rights of Way stand will offer information on the county’s network of footpaths that stretch across coast and countryside.
The popular community partnership Love Local Food will again be running a café area inside the marquee, offering a place for stand visitors to sit down and talk to health advisors or the dementia team.
Devon County Council’s newly elected Chairman will attend the marquee to see the exhibits and take part in some of the activities, including the lifestyle check and the Tour of Britain bike challenge.