New cycle shelters unveiled at Blackhorse Primary
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The bespoke medieval barn inspired shelters can accommodate up to 80 cycles and scooters and have been handcrafted by an innovative local company who create play equipment inspired by nature. The new shelters match the school’s recently constructed extension and have been funded by the Local Sustainable Travel Fund (LSTF) as one of a number of community funding projects throughout South Gloucestershire which promote sustainable travel.
The cycle storage launch coincided with the start of the annual ‘Big Pedal’, a national inter-school cycling and scooting competition. Pupils, parents, teachers, and representatives from Sustrans gathered at the school for a special ‘bike-it-breakfast’ to mark the official opening of the new facilities, and there were also free bike MOTs and repairs available during the morning.
The school has placed cycling at the heart of its healthy living curriculum and was awarded 1st place in the South West in 2012’s ‘Big Pedal’ competition and 17th nationally last year. The Big Pedal ranks schools according to the percentage of parents and children cycling over a fortnight, and Blackhorse hope to regain their champions crown again this year.
Cllr Brian Allinson, Chair of South Gloucestershire’s Planning, Transportation and Strategic Environment Committee, said: “Blackhorse Primary School is already a great champion of sustainable travel and the staff do a lot of good work to promote cycling to pupils. Thanks to this funding from the Local Sustainable Travel Fund, delivered by South Gloucestershire Council in partnership with Sustrans, these bespoke new shelters will make it even easier for the children to cycle or scoot to school.”
Simon Botten, headteacher at Blackhorse Primary School, said: “This funding has allowed us to dramatically improve the cycling storage in school which in turn encourages families to leave their cars at home and cycle into school each day. The unique and beautifully crafted bike sheds were inspired by a design for a medieval barn and are not only made from sustainable resources with a design which blends into the environment, they are also cheaper than the standard metal and PVC shelters installed by many schools.”
Blackhorse Primary is the first school in South Gloucestershire to be awarded the ‘Learning Outside the Classroom’ quality mark and is working towards achieving the ‘Silver Bike-it’ mark for promoting cycling. Blackhorse pupils have been receiving Bikeability training sessions and every Friday the school also has a Cycling Enrichment Class, where children learn bike safety, basic cycle maintenance and road safety skills.
This is one of a number of schemes promoting sustainable travel in local communities throughout South Gloucestershire which have been approved for a share of £600,000 of funding through the Local Sustainable Transport Fund (LSTF).
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