STAFF and patients at a Dorchester hospital are taking part in a national drive to make healthy lifestyle choices.

BMI The Winterbourne Hospital has also been raising funds for charity as part of its drive to encourage people to lead healthier lives.

An even healthier menu day in the hospital’s restaurant and a healthy bake sale helped raise £250 for Cancer Research UK.

The event formed part of the hospital’s Big Health Pledge, which calls on people to make small changes that will make a big difference to their health and wellbeing and has been backed by sporting icon Sir Geoff Hurst.

It targets the UK’s five biggest preventable killers – heart disease, stroke, cancer, lung disease and liver disease – offering help and advice on steps you can take to live a healthier life.

As part of the Big Health Pledge a healthy eating cook book has also been created to help raise funds for Cancer Research UK. The book is on sale for £3 at the hospital in Herringston Road, as well as Cancer Research UK shops throughout the country.

BMI The Winterbourne Hospital executive director Theresa Starling said: “The response to this health drive and fundraising event for Cancer Research has been great.

“The aim is to show that looking after your health can be fun.

“The Big Health Pledge will hopefully get people thinking about how they could eat healthier, be more active, quit smoking, drink less alcohol and be more health aware – all steps to a healthier, happier life.”

England’s World Cup hat-trick hero from 1966 Sir Geoff Hurst has also given his support to the health campaign.

He said: “‘Making a pledge’ is a great way to start any new health regime as it helps people concentrate on their individual goals.

“It is important that we all look after ourselves.

“Watching what we eat, cutting down on our alcohol intake and getting that bit more exercise all keeps us fitter and healthier, but sometimes we need a little help along the way.

“It’s great that the Big Health Pledge encourages people to make little changes to their lifestyles and sets them achievable targets which can help make real differences to their health and well-being.”

He added: “It’s a winning idea and I’m setting myself a hat-trick of health goals by making a ‘Big Health Pledge’ of my own.”

n For further details or to make your Big Health Pledge visit