Hackney school signs up for European cycle challenge

Bike Around the Borough 7

Tyssen Primary School in Hackney has become the first in England to join a European project aimed at boosting the numbers of children walking and cycling to school.

Hackney Council is one of nine local authorities from across Europe running the pilot projects as part of the STARS (Sustainable Travel and Recognition for Schools) programme aimed at reducing the number of cars used for the school run.

Eighty percent of journeys to and from school in Hackney are less than one mile and because they take place during rush hour they generate a significant amount of carbon emissions with authorities aiming to shift at least 5% of these journeys from car to cycle.

Last year nearly 3% of primary schoolchildren cycled to their classes in Hackney, but this drops to 1.5% when children reach secondary school age. Hackney Council want to share their experience in working with primary schoolchildren with authorities including Milan and Madrid and in exchange hope to learn more about continuing this work in secondary schools.

Cllr Feryal Demirci, Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods, Hackney Council
We want to give children the confidence and freedom that cycling or walking to work can bring and to encourage this positive behaviour at a young age. Walking or cycling is cheaper, healthier and more fun than getting a lift to school or catching the bus and offers parents the chance to spend a bit more time with their children on the school run and take a break from the stress of rush hour traffic. By taking part in this scheme we can share the successes we've had here in Hackney with other major European cities and build new links to ensure even more of our young people enjoy active travel.
Cllr Feryal Demirci, Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods, Hackney Council