Families encouraged to keep a car free zone around schools

3 September 2020

As pupils return to the classroom this week, the Council is asking families to play their part to keep children safe by leaving a car-free zone around schools.

Leaving the car at home and choosing an active mode of travel, such as walking, cycling or scooting, has health benefits for both pupils and parents and also helps to improve the air quality and congestion around schools. 

Where families need to travel by car, they are encouraged to find a safe place to park at least five minutes away from the school gates and walk the final section to create a car-free and clean air zone around the school. If you are parked up, waiting to drop-off or pick-up your child, please turn off your engine. 
Living Streets, a UK charity that promotes walking, states that children who do some form of exercise, especially a walk or cycle before school, do better in class because they arrive refreshed, fit and ready to learn. Walking and cycling is fun, healthy and provides children with a sense of freedom and physical activity to help maintain a healthy lifestyle.
Cllr Karen Shore, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Environment, Highways and Strategic Transport said: “We know that a lot more people have been out walking and cycling as part of their daily exercise during lockdown. As we return to school, let’s all play our part to make sure that local children get to school safely and continue to improve air quality and reduce congestion in our communities. Active travel provides a range of physical and mental health benefits for our children and helps set them up for a great day of learning in the classroom.”

For information on cycling, visit the Sustrans website or visit the iTravelSmart website for details about cycle routes in the borough. Parents are also advised to check their school's website and social media channels regularly for the latest information from their school and details about drop off and pick up arrangements.
Guidance for pupils travelling to school or college by Council-provided transport or public transport can be found on the Council’s school webpage.

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