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Dr McCartney should take a more balanced view on the subJect of Coke Zero sponsorship of Park Lives in Birmingham and other cities. As a regular participant in the activities on offer, I can say they occur with minimal promotion. We regularly have 30 + participants in our Tai Chi group. Benefits go far beyond physical activity and also lead to more community cohesion and relief of loneliness, a public health problem that the BMJ has recently highlighted.
Of course this is a business venture for Coke. However, there is no sign of the local authority, including its public health wing, giving this a priority.
I agree that soft drink sponsorship is less than perfect but I would say that Coke have thrown down the gauntlet to local authorities. What are the chances they'll pick it up?
Consultant in Neuropsychiatry
Friend of Cotteridge Park, Birmingham