Muswell Hill school launches walk-to-school drive

Coldfall Primary School have unveiled a “five minute walk zone,” asking all pupils and their parents to walk at least five minutes to school every day – ideally more.

Seven nine to 10-year-olds at the school have been given the role of “junior travel ambassadors” so that they can encourage other pupils to walk.

They led an assembly last week and handed out croissants and satsumas to everyone who had walked to school on the day.

Children were asked to come to school dressed in their brightest, most visible clothes.

“It felt so good to hand out stickers to people who had walked,” said 10-year-old travel ambassador Sadie Ferguson.

“I felt so proud knowing that our team were the cause of it.”

As well as leading the assembly, the young ambassadors have created a walking zone map by plotting where they can go to after walking five minutes in every direction from the school.

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These plots were used to form a circle, or zone, around the school, showing a realistic five minute walking distance.

The zone is designed to show how easy walking to school is, particularly for those pupils who live inside or near to the walking zone.

For pupils who live too far to walk the whole distance, the new map encourages parking outside the zone and walking the rest of the way.

Pupil Natasha Mushumani, age five, said, “it’s much healthier to walk to school and quicker too, as it’s hard to park near the school.”

“We got croissants and tangerines for the five minute walk zone!’

Staff at Coldfall Primary School aim to reduce traffic and congestion around the school gates and to improve the local environment.

There has been increasing congestion along Everington Road and Coldfall Avenue, a dead end, with growing concerns for pedestrian safety.

“The great thing about the walk zone is that it is created by pupils, for pupils and therefore really allows the school community to take ownership for the campaign,” said Coldfall Primary School teacher Claire Bunston.

“The junior travel ambassadors have been brilliant and I am really proud of their work.

“I also know they have lots more ideas about how to make safe, sustainable travel the norm this year and beyond, so watch this space!’

Our Lady of Muswell and St Mary’s Church of England primary school in Hornsey have launched similar campaigns with the help of Haringey council.