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Fashionable helmets help encourage Wavell pupils to cycle

Friday, 20 June 2014

Over 52 pupils from The Wavell Secondary School in Farnborough will start cycling to school in June, encouraged by a new scheme offering fashionable top class cycling helmets provided by Hampshire County Council, as part of the My Journey project.

Earlier this year, a survey into the travel habits of staff and students was carried out to find out how the school run could be improved to make it safer, more pleasant and sustainable for everyone.

Year 9 maths students helped to analyse the survey results from over 500 pupils to identify the barriers to walking or cycling to school, and a group of year 9 students was set up to campaign with Living Streets to find ways to encourage students and staff to walk or cycle to school, rather than travel by car.

Analysis of the survey by the students revealed that while around 10 per cent of students already cycle to school on a regular basis, a further 9 per cent of students would cycle but felt they did not own the right safety helmet and were concerned about storage for helmets and bikes during the day. In response, My Journey offered students a selection of helmets in a range of designs, increased cycle storage so that bikes can be locked up safely and are introducing helmet lockers.

Executive Member for Economy, Transport & Environment Cllr Seán Woodward said: "It is encouraging to see that so many pupils would like to cycle, and that we are able to help them make this change from being dropped off by car. The improvement works due to start later this year at Queens roundabout next to the school will not only help tackle local congestion for residents and businesses in the area will also provide safer routes for cyclists and pedestrians commuting to school."

Hampshire County Council has been working closely with Wavell School since November 2013, following the announcement of proposed changes to the nearby Queens roundabout, with the aim of improving access to the school for cyclists and pedestrians and encouraging the use of other ways to travel to school than the car.

Amanda Rowley, Headteacher, Wavell School said: "Safeguarding is the bedrock of The Wavell School and Road Safety is a crucial part of our School Travel programme. I am delighted that so many of our children have been able to benefit from the 'My Journey' programme."

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