25 August 2020
The idea of School Streets – the closure of roads at school gates during the school run – is gaining momentum, especially as a way of promoting active travel during the pandemic.
But how do you go about achieving School Streets status for your school?
We’ve compiled some pointers to the various bits of useful information to help you through the process.
It’s not as simple as ordering something via Amazon. But by all accounts, it’s much more fun and the results are far more satisfying.
This is because it is a community activity: mobilising support among parents, neighbours and the school (the head makes the application). Once you get local council approval, volunteers get to run the thing – marshals in high-viz need to guard either end of the road (until you raise the funds to install hydraulic bollards, or cars go out of fashion).
In a nutshell, here’s what to do:
1 Investigate if it’s an option for your school (if your school gate is on the A4 then forget it)
2 Convince others that it’s a good idea and recruit them to your cause
3 Work with your school to apply to the council
4 The council will approve your plan if its convinced it won’t all end up as a total shambles
5 Launch and run the scheme
You might think you deserve a Nobel after you and your friends have done all this, but really all you’ll achieve is save a couple of lives, coax a few youngsters onto scooters and deprive others of the chance to show off dad’s new SUV.
If you’re still interested, then here’s some reference material:
Toolkit and application pack
School Streets Org – good resources and inspiration
Who to contact:
Reading Borough Council – Lilian Green – Lilian.Green@reading.gov.uk
If you’re a local authority, get in touch with the Hackney School Streets helpline – details in this story
Useful background reading:
Who in Reading is thinking about School Streets status? (Help us grow the list)
Crescent Road schools:
Alfred Sutton Primary School – Crescent Road – parents and school supportive
UTC Reading – Crescent Road –
Maiden Erlegh – Crescent Road – school supportive
Emmer Green Primary School – parents considering
Wilson Primary School – parents considering