Bristol teachers to get a master class in tackling the school run

Wednesday 11th March between 12:15 – 13:15 Teachers from over 40 schools across Bristol and South Gloucester are being offered a day of free workshops to get practical advice on how to promote cycling to school.

The day is being hosted by the city’s four dedicated Sustrans Bike It Officers who are working with schools across the region to promote cycling as a real alternative to the school run. Teachers will be encouraged to cycle to the event and experience one of the famous ‘Sustrans Bike It Breakfasts’ which are common place in Bike It schools across the country.

The Bike It Action Day will give school travel champions a chance to learn from other schools on how best to introduce cycling in their own school community. The workshops will also cover safety issues, how to access bike training and an update on how the Cycling City project will benefit schools in the region.

Sustrans Bike It Officer Ben Bowskill said:”This is a unique chance for teachers from all over the region to come with any questions they may have about promoting cycling in their school. It is very much an interactive day and an opportunity to share ideas as well as get new ones. We know that 47% of children would like to cycle to school and currently only 2% actually do, this means we have a huge potential to increase cycling levels across Bristol and South Gloucestershire .”

Cllr Dr Jon Rogers, Bristol City Council's Cabinet Member for Transport and Sustainability said: “Cycling is a healthy, quick and fun way of getting about Bristol . Just 100 metres from the venue is one of the best cycle and pedestrian routes in Bristol , the Bristol to Bath Cycle Path. Come and enjoy the best ribbon park in the city.

"Bike It, is all about enthusing our children (and their parents and grandparents) with the pleasures of cycling. This tested programme works and complements the efforts of Cycling City to double the number of cyclists in Bristol in 3 years. We can make it happen.”

The Bike It project works with over 400 schools and over 60,000 children and young people across England and Wales . It works directly with pupils, parents and staff to help them overcome whatever it is that is preventing them from cycling to school – by organising cycle training, helping to install new bike sheds, contributing to classroom work and providing information about safe routes to schools. Participating schools across England have seen levels of cycling treble within a year– bucking the trend in declining numbers of children cycling to school.

There are nearly 50 schools across Bristol and South Gloucestershire that are taking part in the Sustrans Bike It project. Bike It is a nationwide scheme, managed by sustainable transport charity Sustrans. Nationally the project is funded by Cycling England, and the cycle industry through the Bike Hub, locally Bike It funded by Bristol City Council, South Gloucestershire Council and Active Bristol through NHS Bristol.

Staff, parents and teachers who are interested in promoting cycling and walking in their school are encouraged to call the Sustrans School Travel Team on 0117 915 0100 for free information and advice.

Source: Sustrans