Rave reviews for Westdene School Streets Taster Day

Children, parents, carers, teachers and staff at a city primary school have enjoyed a safer journey to and from the classroom during a School Streets Taster Day.

Part of Barn Rise outside Westdene Primary School was closed to motor vehicles last Thursday, to allow children to walk, cycle and scoot their way in and out of school.

During drop off and pick up times, children could be seen using the space for running and playing and walking to school with their friends, in a road that had previously been busy with cars.

As part of the Taster Day, children also took part in a number of activities during the school day, including cycle training and Bike Safety delivered by Sustrans.

The day was also a chance to gather views and opinions from parents, carers, school staff and local residents. 

Parent Kate Duddington said: “I think this is a fantastic initiative. I think all parents around schools are always worried about their children’s safety and it’s really relaxing for the parents to not have to worry about that. 

“It’s also really great for the kids because they’re happy running around with their friends, so really supportive of this.”

‘I wish it was like this every day’

Deputy chair of the Environment, Transport and Sustainability committee and Withdean councillor Jamie Lloyd said: “As councillors this was a priority for us. We've seen the chaos of the school run here and what Westdene needed was school streets, we've tried this Taster Day and it's worked brilliantly.

“The children are the main people involved here and they have absolutely loved it. I saw two twins playing on the street and they said: ‘I wish it was like this every day’, we want to make it like this every day for them. 

“Less traffic is good for everyone; it makes it safer and healthier for kids and their families arriving and leaving school; what's not to like?”

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