SCHEMES to encourage unfit people to do more exercise often draw criticism. Is this a good use of taxpayers’ money? Will it work? Couldn’t the money be better spent?

But the people behind a new plan to get people active say they are doing the right thing.

The scheme will see some of the county’s most inactive people phoned up by people in an effort to motivate them to exercise.

Whether it will work or not remains to be seen.

Still, there are serious issues here that need resolving.

Simply scoffing at efforts to deal with poor health does nothing.

The rising level of obesity in the county is a chronic problem that needs to be tackled.

Recent figures show around 60 per cent of county residents struggle with their weight.

At the same time, far too many people are not doing any exercise at all.

We have a crude image of people in such situations which belies the reality.

As we report today, mothers who spend their days looking after their children struggle to find time to exercise.

Indeed, anyone stuck in an office for long hours each day will also know how hard it is to squeeze in a session in the gym or a jog in the park.

Diets in Britain are often poor, and high alcohol consumption is an issue that worries GPs.

While this programme might not be the answer, we should give those behind it the chance to prove their worth.