16-20 May is Walk to School Week. This week-long activity for primary schools helps school children experience first-hand the importance of walking to school and helps them reach the recommended 60 minutes minimum of physical activity per day.
Whilst we strongly encourage the uptake, more still needs to be done to help improve safety for all but especially children in being able to safely walk to school.
We continue to support and want further expansion of School Streets which have shown positive results across London.
School Streets are a promising initiative where roads are closed to traffic at drop-off and pick-up times. This makes the air cleaner, roads safer and environment more pleasant for everyone. Air pollution is the biggest environmental risk to health in the UK.
During the trial, safer streets also encouraged active travel to school and 18% of parents and carers reduced their driving. Improvements to air quality and this increase in physical activity are a boon for children’s health.
These are very popular schemes too, over 300 are deployed across London and 81% of parents and carers support the timed closure of roads to traffic.
We're delighted to see additional school streets schemes being introduced by the Liberal Democrat council in Sutton, with 10 schemes currently in place.
In Bromley, we've previously reported problems with the enforcement of road closures in Orpington.
Our five counillors on Bromley Council will continue to call for:
- Roll out of School Streets beyond those currently in place in Bromley.
- Aid the enforcement of traffic restrictions to make School Streets more effective.
Let's promote active travel and improve air quality for our children, and for everyone.
If you'd like a School Streets scheme introduced at your school, please get in touch and we'll support you.