The importance of sport, outdoor education, creative & performing arts

Advocates of co-curricular activities, Hurst College explains why they play a big part in the lives of their students.

“What particularly strikes visitors to Hurst College is the vibrant dynamic community and the importance placed on an all-round as well as a core academic education. Students are enabled and challenged to make the most of their talents and the huge opportunities which are available. The college is ambitious for its students to achieve the best that they can in all that they do, recognising and encouraging both engagement and achievement. Whilst the best possible academic grades are critical, Hurst believes the development of the key skills, qualities and values which are so important in life come more from engagement with life beyond the classroom. 

Hurst regard co-curricular activities – such as sport, outdoor education, creative and performing arts – as being key to the all-round education of each student. The college offers a wide range of activities for all students during the school day. The programme is designed to encourage them to try new skills, move beyond their comfort zones, and gain experience in a safe and supportive environment. 

It is the intention that through these activities, students will not only acquire certain skills and develop certain qualities, but will also be introduced to a sport, hobby or pastime which will give them pleasure throughout their lives.  

Whether such activities are more physical or challenging in nature, service-oriented or cerebral, students are encouraged to pursue at least one significant activity throughout their time at Hurst. Co-curricular activities include the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme, Combined Cadet Force (CCF), community service, environmental conservation and the Hurst farm. Other activities include clubs for books, film, mechanics, dissection, ICT, creative arts, golf and sport. During the week, a host of additional activities are scheduled including fitness training, swimming and other sports, alongside sessions for drama, choir, orchestra, dance, the Top House competition, debating and workshops for art and DT students. 

Above all else at Hurst, nobody is ‘beneath the radar’ or ‘on the bench’. Each child is an active member of the community, who is encouraged, supported and enabled to realise their potential.”
April 2022, Hurstpierpoint College

Why Hurst College Students Are “happy, healthy & active” 

We are very fortunate to have Hurst College sponsoring Day 3 of the Mid Sussex Marathon Weekend, with their support residents of Mid Sussex will be able take part in this fantastic community event – and with three days to go there’ still time to sign up for the Burgess Hill Fun Run, Mile or 10K!

Hurst College is a thriving independent school located within a 140-acre campus in West Sussex and offers a through-school education from Pre-Prep to Sixth Form. With Wellbeing at the heart of what they do Hurst College in this blog post they explain how they do this.

“At Hurst College, pupil wellbeing is at the heart of what we do. Our pre-emptive approach aims to support all pupils throughout their time at Hurst. Positive mental wellbeing is evident throughout the school at every level with our recent whole school objective being ‘to develop a mutually supportive culture’. So much so that our most recent Independent Schools Inspectorate (ISI) report stated, “Throughout the school there is a tangible and marked positivity among pupils”. 

Embedded timetabled wellbeing sessions ensure all pupils will spend time on the school farm, in the forest, taking part in yoga, mindfulness and reflecting on what positive wellbeing means to them. Daily sessions with housemasters/mistresses, tri-weekly tutorial sessions and head of year check-ins, ensure pupils can share concerns and feel supported. 

There is an array of expert support beyond house staff – on-site counsellors, the medical team, the Chaplain, a dedicated Director of Wellbeing and a pastoral intervention practitioner – who all provide specialist support, alongside the robust pupil guardian mentor scheme. Pupils feel supported and “cite many people to whom they could turn to for support” (ISI). 

Transition to Hurst is a key time and we host a unique event where prospective pupils join us a few months in advance of their entry to ensure a smooth transition pastorally and academically to support their wellbeing. This helps develop key relationships with pupils and their schools, who also join us for events throughout the year. This is the beginning of a transition/induction programme that lasts throughout the first year. 

Staff are trained in Youth Mental Health First Aid by our Director of Safeguarding and are also provided with specific and dedicated CPD on supporting individuals. Staff Wellbeing is also a significant priority and Hurst is seen as a leader in this field with our Staff Wellbeing lead regularly writing and presenting for the TES and Optimus Education. Hurst was also the first school nationally to offer all staff the Mind Clinic – a supportive listening service – alongside an array of other wellbeing resources and support. This forward-looking culture encourages staff to be excellent role models. 

Parents are also key to our wellbeing success. They are invited in for presentations, forums and webinars to help them support their children/our pupils and receive our wellbeing Newsletters. We believe this holistic approach is key. 

Hurst is seen as a wellbeing leader in the local area, emphasised by hosting conferences and forums for other schools with a focus on Wellbeing, Transition and Safeguarding. We also invite key staff from feeder schools to see how we teach subjects, share ideas/best practice, and work closely with those staff to best support every pupil. It is through this and all of the above that we ensure our pupils remain “happy, healthy and active” (ISI).”

April 2022, Hurstpierpoint College


A huge thank you to this years wonderful sponsors and partners, for their donations for prizes, venues, catering. Helping to make this years marathon happen:

  • Hurst College
  • Roche Diagnostics
  • Wisdom Sports, Haywards Heath 
  • Herbert Sports, East Grinstead 
  • GR Teamwear, Burgess Hill
  • Shokz
  • East Grinstead Rugby Club
  • The Burgess Hill Academy
  • Woodlands Mead School  
  • Meridian FM
  • Burgess Hill Radio 
  • Places Leisure  

and all our wonderful volunteers!

Double European Athletics  Champion, Paralympian  Fabienne  Andre Backs Mid Sussex Marathon Virtual Event. 

Virtual Race 2022 16th April – 2nd May.

As an inclusive event there is something for everyone, with Fun Runs and Mile races each of the 3 days for younger participants and new runners.

Those unable to attend the in-person event can take part in our virtual race, between 16th April and Monday 2nd May 2022.

Double European Athletics Champion, Paralympian Fabienne Andre is an advocate of this year’s Virtual event: “Participants can take part wherever and however suits  them, walking, in a wheelchair, on a scooter or a bike – the more creative the better!”

Fabienne Andre

Join us and be part of the action!

Runner’s stories 2020

Clapping hands sign

Over 700 children from 18 schools across Mid Sussex have completed MSMW 2020 Virtual Fun Run Week. They have all done amazingly well and should be so proud of all the students that completed the race. We are so happy we have been able to still do this event virtually to help children stay active and have fun!

Read on to find out how St. Peter’s Catholic Primary School got on during MSMW 2020 Virtual Fun Run Week.

“Great day yesterday with the launch of our @MidSxMarathon 1km and 1mile challenges. Well done to all of our runners and supporters.”

“Another 19 runners in action yesterday both at home and in school for the @MidSxMarathon virtual 1km and 1 mile races. The kids have really enjoyed it – so many aimed for 1km and then went for the mile!”

“Wow @MidSxMarathon we have had an incredible week with 90 of our children completing either the 1km fun run or the 1 mile from either home or at school. We still have a few more runners to go! Thanks for this great opportunity @MidSxMarathon.”

Runner’s stories 2020

Here’s how jezzaruns got on during the MSMW 2020 Virtual Race!

All set for tomorrow solo 10 miles to kickstart my @midsussexmarathon weekend fundraising for Heads On Charity .

Day 1 complete – a relaxing solo 10 miles.

All set as tomorrow brings Day 2 of @midsussexmarathon – a steady 10 miles on the trails and more fundraising for Heads On Charity.

Day 2 @midsussexmarathon complete – solo 10 miles on the trails and another £50 pledged for Heads On Charity.

All set for tomorrow Day 3 of my @midsussexmarathon weekend and a chance to raise funds for Heads On Charity and the opportunity to talk about mental health . Together we can break the stigma , prevent suicide and say no to bullies . The feet will do the talking.

Day 3 @midsussexmarathonweekend complete – a socially distanced 10k with Ian P . 57.57 with a last mile of 8 min 30 !!! Another £50 pledged for Heads In Charity.

Happy to receive my medals for the virtual @midsussexmarathon and a big thank you to the organisers @niceworkrun . Hopefully see you all next year in person. “

Massive well done Jezza, you did amazing!!! We will be looking forward to seeing you in 2021!!

MSMW 2020 Virtual Runner’s Stories

Samantha Day

Day 1 completed of the Mid Sussex Marathon 2020 – 10.55 miles and no rain!Fabulous scenery. Thank you for going virtual giving us the opportunity and motivation to enrol and take part. Looking forward to the next 10 miles tomorrow.

Day 2 completed of the Mid Sussex Marathon 2020 – 10.72 miles. I had so much fun today on the walk and especially on the viaduct. Just goes to show what exercise in a lovely location can do for you. Only 6.2 miles to go tomorrow!

Day 3 completed! Yes 6.3 miles today to finish the Mid Sussex Marathon 2020 marathon event. I have so enjoyed this challenge. I would recommend it to you all. A big thank you to the organisers for making this virtual and giving me the motivation to take part. I am looking forward to my medals!

After completing the Mid Sussex Marathon 2020 virtual event last week over three days, it has motivated me to continue walking longer distances. Today I walked 15.2 miles in preparation for walking 26.2 miles, a whole marathon next weekend in a day.

Well I am blaming the Mid Sussex Marathon 2020! At the beginning of June I registered for the Marathon virtual event, 26.2 miles which I chose to do over three days. I had such a good time and it made me feel so motivated that today I decided to walk 26.2 miles in one day! All good and feeling great.

Congratulations Samantha on completing the MSMW 2020 Virtual Race!!! We hope you are enjoying your medals, your amazing !!

Well done to everyone who completed MSMW 2020 Virtual Race!

Thank you for all your amazing comments, we just love reading them!

Simon Kingsley-Young “Tbh, I NEVER thought that I would ever be getting a medal for taking part in a virtual run, let alone complete a whole marathon. As the post says, you can do a little each day and you get the choice of running, jogging, walking, hopping, skipping, crawling or any other method to get it completed. Well done to Mid Sussex Marathon 2020 for making this event more inclusive than ever before.”

Nura Karpowitsch “Mid Sussex Marathon 2020 omg, I had some stunning scenery, spent more time taking photos than running/walking 😂😂”

Elizabeth Thomas Prentis “Got my medals the other day. Thank you. They look rather wonderful all stacked up”

Richard Barr “Wow ! What a perfect opportunity to run a great virtual run with #MSMW2020 “

Samantha Day “Well I am blaming the Mid Sussex Marathon 2020! At the beginning of June I registered for the Marathon virtual event, 26.2 miles which I chose to do over three days. I had such a good time and it made me feel so motivated that today I decided to walk 26.2 miles in one day! All good and feeling great.
You have up to 28th June to register for any distance you would like to run, walk or cycle as long as you complete it by 1st July. Who knows, you could end up feeling as empowered and motivated as I do and the medals are fab!

Jim Vidler “This is such a great event, and being virtual this year doesn’t really detract from the challenge, well worth giving it a go!”

Wendy White “What I love about this virtual event is that you can choose your distance. Can be less than a marathon.”

Samantha Smith Cllr “Mid Sussex Marathon 2020 is perfect for those who have just started out doing exercise and also for those who find it hard to be in crowds and want to take the race over several days.
Families can participate together and it gives people who may have disabilities to have a chance and take part too!”
So excited!
My first ever medal and I’m chuffed to bits 😁
I completed 10k on my bike last weekend and for some that doesn’t seem much but to me it was a HUGE effort and achievement 🏅
I didn’t think i could do it but there are a lot of things in my life I never thought I could do!
Super proud of my achievement and I hope they do another virtual race because it suits me and would enter again 😊

Kathy Wras “Its been great to have the challenge 🙂 , Day 2 today for me today, 2nd 5 miles under my belt, my poor knees aren’t looking forward to tomorrow!”

Becky Workman “My medals arrived today and they are amazing! Thank you so much for allowing us to run virtually this year. Looking forward to running it with everyone else next year 🤞”

Simon Kingsley-Young “You’ll be glad that you did….I was!!”

Becky Workman “I did! Definitely need some recovery tips 🤣. Thanks for enabling us to do this remotely this year. Looking forward to receiving the gorgeous medals 🏅”

#f15d40James Munden “10 yesterday and 10 today. Missed the event but still great to get out. 6.2 in the morning 😀”

Cathy Burke “Just finished day 1 10 miler. Would normally be sweeping the race so figured this year I may as well run it. #MSMW2020 #teamnicework”

Hope you’re enjoying your well deserved medals and don’t forget you can still grab yourself a MSMW 2020 T shirt!

Running as a family!

Running is a fitness activity that the whole family can get involved in. Unlike any other sports, running activities can accommodate any fitness level or ability. You can make it work for families of all ages. Read on to find out just some of the benefits of running as a family.

It’s good for the mind and body

Running does wonders for the body by strengthening your bones and muscles, exercising your lungs, and boosting the immune system. Living an active lifestyle also makes you more mentally alert, which means kids who are active also tend to be active learners.


Running together is a great way of encouraging a healthy and active lifestyle whilst having quality family time. Working as a family towards a shared goal and celebrating your achievements will bring everyone closer together.


If you’re new to running and are looking to start out easy, running small short distances with your kids can help your motivation stay high.


If you’re taking on one of your longer runs, why not warm up with your kids? Have some fun, jump around, dance or skip to get the blood plumping, even if it’s just a jog to the end of the street and back, it’s a way of fitting in your daily steps.


Not only will you enjoy the race endorphins as a family, but you’ll also have fun bonding over the memories for weeks to come.

Have FUN

Signing up to MSMW 2020 Virtual Fun Run together may spark a love for running and encourage your children to take on new challenges for the rest of their lives.

Sign up to MSMW 2020 Virtual Fun Run today !!!!

Think you can’t be part of MSMW 2020 Virtual Race? Think again!

The benefit of going virtual is that you can take part at your own pace and whenever is convenient for you!

You can join the fun of MSMW 2020 Virtual Race anyway that suits you!

You could…

  • Run a little each day
  • Walk the distance or even cycle
  • Complete your chosen distance in your garden
  • Make a fun race day with your family
  • Take part on a treadmill
  • Do one mile a day for 5 or 10 days

Remember you don’t have to enter the full marathon you can do the 1K, 1 Mile, 5K, 5 Mile, 10K, 10 Mile. or challenge yourself to the half marathon. The choice is up to you!!

If you’re new to running take a look at the NHS guide to running for beginners! Also check out our tips for choosing what surface is best for you to run on and route planning.

Give it a try and sign up now to make sure you don’t miss out on all the fun!