25,000 Cambs pupils put best foot forward to save planet

PUBLISHED: 11:22 16 May 2007 | UPDATED: 22:47 28 May 2010

Walking to school

Walking to school

Schools across Cambridgeshire will be putting their best foot forward to reduce congestion and pollution during National Walk to School Week. From Monday, May 21, around 25,000 pupils from 105 schools will be joining almost 2 million students across the

Schools across Cambridgeshire will be putting their best foot forward to reduce congestion and pollution during National Walk to School Week.

From Monday, May 21, around 25,000 pupils from 105 schools will be joining almost 2 million students across the country to say goodbye to the car and walking to school to show how they can take steps to save the planet.

Jo Kasey, School Travel Adviser at Cambridgeshire County Council said: "This Walk to School Week for Cambridgeshire has the most Cambridgeshire pupils ever taking part. All schools taking part have received diaries, posters and bookmarks to use during the week".

The theme of this year's massively popular Walk to School Week aims to show how walking rather than driving to school makes a big contribution towards cutting pollution.

Jo added: "Similar events will be held throughout the country, ensuring the message gets out all over Britain. And it is not just about the climate-change-causing carbon dioxide. In terms of local air pollution, the school run is one of the worst offenders. It's those short, stop-start journeys with cold engines which are the most polluting - pumping out carbon monoxide, particulates and other compounds that are linked to worsening asthma symptoms and poor air quality. Contrary to what some might believe, being cocooned in a car offers no protection from local pollution - in fact pollutants found inside the car are around three times higher than those experienced by pedestrians. The campaign is asking people to leave those keys by the door and Walk to School - and judging by the number of schools involved this year we think it's the pupils that will be leading the way."

Walking to school is very important as it can improve child and parent fitness. It also helps children gain a basic life skill by walking to school. With less pupils coming to school by car it means that congestion outside the school gate is reduced.

Andrew Fielding, National Walk to School Campaign Co-ordinator, said: "We're encouraging people around the country to use Walk to School Week to try out walking with their kids. It isn't just good for the environment, it's great for you too - walking for those 30 minutes a day means real quality time together, and the average walk there and back will burn more calories than the school's PE quota. Give it a go and see how you find it - we doubt you'll want to go back to the traffic jams afterwards!

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