A COMMUNITY centre has been given a £7,400 boost to run children’s exercise classes.

The Oak Tree Centre, in Harwich Road, has been awarded the grant by Heart Research UK as part of the charity’s Healthy Hearts for Kids programme.

It means the centre can run weekly childrens’ exercise classes, which begin on Wednesday, March 26.

Sareena Cobden, Oak Tree centre manager, said: “The aim of the project is to get children exercising and enjoying activities that increase heart rate whilst promoting the benefits of exercise and healthy life style choices for heart health.

“We will be using indoor based games and sporting workshops that will improve behaviour, self-confidence and motor skills.”

Barbara Harpham, national director at Heart Research UK, added: “The centre team, because of their strong presence in the local community, are the ideal people to get youngsters into a lifetime of good habits.”

The year-long scheme is designed to combat growing obesity levels in younger children.