Combe Down Primary School

Combe DownChurch of England Primary School

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Working Together Aiming High

Clean Air Day/Walking Bus Trial

Thank you to all of you who attended the parent forum on 18 January and the follow-up on 24 May. The meeting in January sparked a lively and passionate debate as to how we can best tackle the problem of congestion and the limited parking available at the school at drop off and pick up, as well as the unsafe parking and dropping-off practices by a few parents/carers.

A number of creative suggestions were made as to how to make keep the children safe, reduce the pressure on the roads and encourage responsible behaviour.

Walking bus

As a result of the meeting, Alasdair Yule, School Travel Plan Officer, BANES, was invited to attend the parent forum on 24 May and share his ideas; one of which was to set up a walking bus; we agreed that this would be a positive step towards dealing with some of the issues raised. A walking bus is a form of transport for children who, chaperoned by parent volunteers, walk to school (and back) at a set time along a set route, in much the same way a school bus would drive them to and from school. The bus will start at the Bradford Road shops, cross over the zebra crossing and continue to the school along Shepherd’s Walk and Beechwood Road. The reason for choosing this start/end point is because the Foxhill area houses the highest number of Combe Down Primary School pupils.

The benefits of a walking bus include:

  • providing a safe way for children to walk to school
  • allowing children to have regular exercise and reinforcing the habit of walking for shorter journeys
  • positive for the environment: less congestion and traffic = less pollution.

We are planning to pilot this initiative on Clean Air Day (Thursday 20 June) by asking you and your children to join us on a walking bus that morning. We would love to see as many of you as possible. On arrival at the school, Alasdair Yule will be giving a presentation about Clean Air Day in the school hall, and where we will learn more about how walking buses work. Tea and coffee will also be served.

If you think this is something you might be interested in volunteering for and/or something you might use for your child/children, then please register your interest with Mr Wainer at a.wainer@combedown.com. At this stage we simply need an idea of the level of interest, so you won’t be committing yourself to anything.

A separate letter will be sent from the school in due course regarding Clean Air Day and what we and the children can do to support it.

We hope to see you on 20 June.

Best wishes

Sophie Pandit & Sally Whitworth
Parent Forum Co-ordinators