Sutton Scene - Deputy Leader of the Council Column 21/08/2020

Published Friday, 21st August 2020

From the Deputy Leader, Councillor Manuel Abellan.

Many parents tell us there is too much traffic on our roads to allow their children to walk or cycle to school safely and that roads around schools at drop-off and pick-up times are busy with cars. That’s why as part of our Safer, Active, Greener Streets programme, and following the success of five experimental ‘School Streets’ earlier this year, we will be rolling out fourteen more experimental ‘School Streets’ across Sutton for when schools start again in September. You can find the list of participating schools here.

A ‘School Street’ is a road outside or around a school with temporary traffic restrictions at school drop-off and pick-up times only. Residents living in or around the specific roads and emergency services continue to have access all day. 

In 2019, the world’s largest-ever study of its kind revealed that London children are five times more exposed to air pollution when travelling to primary schools than at any other time of the day. More than 1 in 3 of all children's deaths on roads nationally in 2018 also took place during the morning and afternoon school runs. This is unacceptable and we want to do something about it. 

School Streets will aid social distancing and create a safer and more pleasant environment for walking and cycling, as well as improve air quality and reduce noise levels outside schools and in neighbouring streets. We also know that exercising at least once a day makes a huge difference to a child’s physical and mental health. You can see more information about School Streets in Sutton here.

If you live within walking or cycling distance of one of these fourteen schools, we hope that our School Streets will encourage you to consider walking, cycling or using a scooter instead of the car to get to and from school each day. As your Council, we will do all we can to make that switch to active travel safe, fun and enjoyable - check out our Creative Pavements!