A popular Health Mela now in its 18th year attracted hundreds from across the city of Preston.

The event organised by the National Forum for Health and Wellbeing and the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan), took place in the University’s welcoming Foster Building. 

Visitors were able to view 60 stallholders and a team of health professionals offering on the spot Health MOT’s, information and advice.

The event was opened to the public by Professor Mayur Lakhani CBE, President of the Royal College of General Practitioners in the presence of Sir Mark Hendrick, MP for Preston, Professor Lynne Livesey, Joint Institutional Lead for UCLan, and Cllr. Trevor Hart, Mayor of Preston. 

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A choir and dancers added their own cheerful note to the proceedings.

Young visitors developed new caring skills in the ‘Teddy Bears’ Clinic, explored the mighty Inflatable Brain and pedalled away to produce their own nutritious drink on the ‘Smoothie Bike’.

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Professor Lakhani said, 'I want to congratulate the organisers of the Preston Health Mela for putting on an outstanding event. It is clear to me that Preston is leading the way in health and wellbeing and in creating a wide range of effective partnerships with its communities and institutions such as UCLan. 

"Thanks also to all the many volunteers who made this a great success with much on offer and practical relevant content.'

Cllr Trevor Hart, Mayor of Preston added. "I was delighted to support the Health Mela event. Such a good informative and useful event that gets bigger and better every year. 

"This Mela both informs, supports, provides practical help and insight to all who attend. Good key note speakers that were forward thinking followed by so many advice agencies and the free health check that gave instant results all made up an exceptional event. Congratulations to all that organised and hosted it."

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Professor Romesh Gupta, OBE, Chair of the National Forum for Health and Wellbeing said, "When our series of Health Melas began eighteen years ago, we believed that there was real positive energy, focused on the promotion of community wellbeing, that could be released by bringing together in the Health Mela, a mixture of NHS, voluntary and community organisations in a joyful and informal celebration of healthy living.

"As each year has passed, we have seen this belief confirmed and amplified beyond our imagination.

"My heartfelt thanks to all the organisations and individuals who have worked so hard with us over the years to achieve our aim of healthier and happier communities."