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The New Paper Big Walk takes a break

Annual event not possible because venue of choice, National Stadium, is to be redeveloped.
Organiser open to ad-hoc event elsewhere to mark special occasions, co-organised with external partners

SINGAPORE, 12 April 2007 - The New Paper Big Walk, which made history as Singapore’s most successful mass-participation walking event, is taking a breather. The reason: Its venue of choice, the National Stadium, is to be torn down and rebuilt.

Started in 1991 with 7,000 walkers, The New Paper Big Walk went on to stride into the Guinness World Records in 2000 as the World’s Largest Walk with 77,500 participants. After a memorable 16-year run, the newspaper is now calling on loyal walkers to pen their recollections and send their snapshots for a Walk down Memory Lane to be published later. Best entries will win prizes.

"Many families have seen their kids grow up with the Big Walk," said Ivan Fernandez, editor of The New Paper and The New Paper on Sunday. "So it’s with a heavy heart that we cease it’s annual frequency. Instead, we will seize opportunities to work with partners and supporters to jointly organise ad-hoc events to bring together Big Walkers on very special occasions. For example, the opening of the Marina Barrage or the Integrated Resorts."

The staging venue and 10-km route of the Big Walk has always been carefully picked. Over the years, the National Stadium at Kallang has become associated with the Big Walk. At last year’s event, 55,000 walkers were alerted about the impending loss of the stadium, as it is to make way for a world-class integrated sports hub, targeted for 2011.

Alternative interim venues explored could not offer the National Stadium’s crowd-friendly features, or its character and sense of place.

James Heng, Executive Vice-President for Product Development and Branding, Singapore Press Holdings, added: "For 16 long years, our readers, partners and supporters made The New Paper Big Walk the biggest sporting event, enjoyed by individuals and families, adults and children, young and old. For this, The New Paper would like to thank everyone for their enthusiasm and participation. And we look forward to a major occasion in the future to involve all once again, and the new sports hub might just present that opportunity."

Meanwhile, there are a host of other exciting events organised by The New Paper that the public can participate in this year.

This month, The New Paper SUVival Challenge will see car drivers trying to outplay, outsmart and outdrive their opponents in this rally with a twist. In June, game fanatics can expect to pit their skiils against each other and battle it out at The New Paper CyberChallenge. The search for that exquisite and fresh look of the year will be on once again in October in The New Paper New Face modelling talent contest.

And The New Paper will also again be celebrating individuality & creativity, while raising funds for the President’s Challenge, through Be Yourself Day on 31 August. On top of these, readers can participate in The New Paper’s Lifestyle series on gourmet, fitness and creative activities as well as The New Paper’s Movie Treats.

Issued by Singapore Press Holdings Limited
Co. Regn. No: 198402868E

For more information, please contact:

Danny Yeo
Assistant Vice-President, Branding & Promotions
PDB, Marketing Division
Mobile: 9622 6233
Email: danny@sph.com.sg

Eric Ching
Manager, Corporate Communications
DID: 6319 1280
Email: chingsm@sph.com.sg

About The New Paper
Launched in 1988, The New Paper pioneered a style of journalism in Singapore that goes for sharp news angles. The second most-read paid English-language newspaper in Singapore after The Straits Times, The New Paper has a huge following for its sports pages that provide strong sports coverage, especially in soccer news. Now a big part of the Singapore scene, The New Paper strolled into Guinness World Records in 2000 when its annual mass-participation event, The New Paper Big Walk, was recognised as the World’s Largest Walk.

About Singapore Press Holdings Ltd

Newspapers and Magazines
Main board-listed Singapore Press Holdings Ltd (SPH) is the leading media company in Singapore, delivering news and information through print, Internet and broadcasting platforms. In Singapore, it publishes 14 newspapers in four languages. Every day, 2.7 million individuals or 83 percent of people above 15 years old, read one of SPH’s news publications. SPH also publishes over 90 magazine titles in Singapore and the region, covering a broad range of interests from lifestyle to information technology.

Internet and Mobile
Beyond print, the Internet editions of SPH newspapers enjoy over 100 million pageviews with 6 million unique visitors every month. SPH’s online and new media initiatives include a revolutionary mobile advertising and information service, ZapCode; recruitment and job search service, ST701; and STOMP (Straits Times Online Mobile Print), a portal that connects, engages and interacts with readers on the Web and via mobile phone messaging.

Broadcasting
SPH has a 20 percent stake in MediaCorp TV Holdings Pte Ltd, which operates free-to-air channels 5, 8, U and TV Mobile, and a 40 percent stake in MediaCorp Press Pte Ltd, which publishes the free newspaper, Today. In the radio business, SPH has a 80 percent stake in SPH UnionWorks Pte Ltd, which operates entertainment stations Radio 100.3 in Mandarin and Radio 91.3 in English.

Outdoor Advertising
In addition, SPH has ventured into outdoor advertising through its wholly-owned subsidiary, SPH MediaBoxOffice Pte Ltd, Singapore´s largest outdoor motion display advertising network media company, and a 35 percent stake in TOM Outdoor Media Group, a leading outdoor advertising company in China.

Properties
SPH owns and manages Paragon, the prime retail and office complex in the heart of Orchard Road, Singapore’s main shopping belt. SPH’s wholly-owned subsidiary, Times Development Pte Ltd, is also developing a 43-storey upmarket residential condominium, Sky@eleven, at Thomson Road.

For more information, please visit the SPH website: www.sph.com.sg.