More school crossings to be debated next week

Creating safer routes for schools will be debated by city councillors next week after more than a thousand parents supported a campaign.

Green councillor Sarah Nield started the petition calling for more crossings and road markings around every school in the city.

As of this week, 1,263 people signed her petition, just over the threshold for Councillor Nield to get three minutes to present it to Full Council next Thursday, followed by 15 minutes for debate.

In her petition Councillor Nield said: “We all want more kids to walk to school: it’s good for their health, it combats air pollution – so let’s make it a genuine option for our young people.

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“Schools encourage students to walk. Five, ten and 15 minute walking zones are mapped out around them. But families often find that these walking zones are not actually safe to walk in.

“Walking zones which contain busy, dangerous roads with no crossing points make a mockery of ‘Walk to School’ initiatives.

“Communities who campaign for crossings around their school are often stonewalled with statistics – and told that ‘nothing can be done’ until an accident happens.

“But there is an alternative… We want Safe School Walking Zones. We’re pushing for practical action that will make a real difference to the school run.

“School Walking Zones would mean parents would no longer have to beg for a single crossing at the worst point of their journey.

“Instead of just encouragement, children should have the right to walk safely to school, with the changes put in place to make it possible, and the support given to schools to deliver.”

The campaign wants a new council policy which says all schools will be supported to develop Safe School Walking Zones, with the necessary crossings and road markings added within schools’ ten minute walking zones.

It wants Safe School Walking Zones to be clearly marked to make sure drivers miss the fact they are in one.

This will follow consultation with schools for parents to share their ideas.

Brighton and Hove City Council meets in public from 4.30pm at Hove Town Hall on Thursday, 24 October.

  1. Chris Reply

    The road where I live is just round the corner from an infants’ school and is marked as 20mph. Who normally ignores the 20mph signs, the parents. Most residents are aware of the limited visibility and danger to pedestrians and keep their speed down. The parents also park on the pavements making it difficult for those who do walk, especially with the oversized buggies, and the paving slabs get broken adding to the problems.
    It’s all very well having “Safe Walking Zones” but pointless if nobody is going to patrol them – and we keep being told the council doesn’t have spare money, until a pet project comes along of course.

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