Youngsters will benefit from an expanded holiday activities and food programme this summer, thanks to a £400,000 investment by Oxfordshire County Council.

The money – from the Department for Education – will fund wellbeing pursuits, life skills and healthcare initiatives for five- to 16-year-olds, such as swimming lessons, bike riding, dental care and hygiene.

The extra support will be allocated to: Northfield Brook, Banbury Ruscote, Rosehill and Iffley, Blackbird Leys, Banbury Cross and Neithrop, Banbury Grimsbury and Hightown, Carfax, Barton and Sandhills, Abingdon Caldecott and Littlemore.

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Councillor Liz Brighouse, cabinet member for Children, Education and Youth Services, said: “These activities will be targeted at children and young people who have suffered so much during the pandemic and will give them the opportunity to have a good time and enjoy life doing things they might not otherwise have the opportunity to do with their friends."

Organisations supporting the holiday activities programme include: Oxford Hub – Blackbird LeysWilderness Pioneers – OxfordIgnite Sport – Oxford, Faringdon, and Witney and Elite Sport – Didcot.

The programme provided 4,500 activity places for children during the  Easter break. There are currently 25,000 days of free places available over the summer.

The Government has also given a final Covid-19 local support grant to the council.

Early years settings, schools and colleges have funds to distribute as a supermarket food voucher or equivalent over the holiday. Eligible children are those entitled to a benefits-related free school meal.

Find out more by calling 01865 328460 or email