Get active and learn about public health

A map of the IPH health walkThe Institute of Public Health, which hosts CEDAR,  has created a great way to get active and learn about public health. They have teamed up with Stride Design, a Cambridge web design company, to create the guided walk revealing 800 years and death and disease in Cambridge. It’s an unusual topic, but one that tells a fascinating story of public health in Cambridge and the United Kingdom.

On this two hour walk you can experience plenty of lurid details revealing just how pestilential the beautiful city of Cambridge once was. But the walk isn’t just a history of illness – it provides a heartening story of the improvement in medical care and social welfare in Cambridge, reflected in the steadily improving standards of public health.

It stops at sixteen places which have played a role in shaping this story, from the Cambridge Folk Museum where you can learn about health remedies applied before the rise of modern scientific medicine, to the University of Cambridge Biochemistry Department that has played a seminal role in the history of world health. Here, Sir Frederick Gowland Hopkins, first Professor of Biochemistry at the University of Cambridge, discovered that no animal could survive without “accessory food factors”, or vitamins as we now know them.

This walk traces a journey from times when lives were short and commonly blighted by disease. As knowledge advanced and people acted together for the common good so health improved – themes just as relevant in today’s world.

The walk was originally launched during Cambridge University’s 800 year celebrations in 2009. You can download this walk to your mp3 player or mobile phone and take yourself on a trip around the city. Find out more here.