This week, Western Primary School has invited pupils to travel sustainably to school as part of the Walk to School Week Challenge. Each class is logging daily journeys made on foot, by bike, scooter or ‘Park and Stride’, and learning about the advantages of active travel.
Walk to School Week is an annual, five-day challenge hosted by Living Streets, the UK charity for every day walking. The theme for this year’s event, held from 17 – 21 May, is the ‘walking superpowers’ that benefit individuals, the community and the planet.
Walking is good for physical and mental health, with studies showing that walking to school improves concentration and helps children to arrive ready to learn.
Leaving the car at home to make the journey on foot means fewer vehicles on the road, benefitting the wider community with less traffic and cleaner air. It also reduces the emissions associated with motorised transport, helping to protect our planet by tackling climate change.
Western Year 6 pupil, Gabe, said:
It is better to walk to school because cars are bad for the environment and I have had more time to chat to my family this week.
Rod Beardshall, Zero Carbon Harrogate’s Transport Lead, said:
We’re delighted that Western Primary is participating in Walk to School Week. Transport is responsible for almost half of all emissions across Harrogate District, so to meet our Net Zero targets, there is an urgent need to encourage and enable more sustainable journeys across our community. The school run is a key part of that, and it’s great to see schools promoting the many benefits of active travel in their classrooms.
Fiona Jones, Event Manager for Zero Carbon Harrogate, said:
Based on the success of this week, we realised there was a need for a more regular walk to school campaign within our local community. On Friday 18 June we are launching the Harrogate District Walk to School Day, which will be the start of regular half-term event. It’s all about building positive habits.