Posted: Sat 18th May 2024

Wrexham primary school pupils leading the way with National Walking Month campaign for people living in or visiting the Wrexham area

Primary schools pupils in Wrexham are helping to promote the benefits of keeping active as part of  Living Streets’ National Walking Month.

Victoria Community Primary School joined WOW – the walk to school challenge from Living Streets Cymru – in December.

Since then, the school has seen an increase of families choosing to travel actively to school by either walking, wheeling, cycling, scooting or using the Park and Stride scheme.

In April, only 31% per cent of journeys were driving all the way to school.

Living Streets Cymru is part of the UK charity for everyday walking and campaigns to make walking for short journeys as easy and accessible as possible.

In Wales, thousands of children are enjoying the benefits of walking, wheeling and cycling to school thanks to support from the Welsh Government.

As part of a two-year project, Living Streets Cymru is working with 170 primary schools and 42 secondary schools to deliver its walk to school programme in Wales.

Victoria Community Primary School is one of eight running the WOW programme in Wrexham thanks to this support.

According to WOW Travel Tracker data, Victoria Community Primary School students have made over 9,097 active travel trips this academic year.

Active travel at the school has increased from 48% to 68% (April), with 46% of school trips being walking/wheeling (using mobility aid, including wheelchairs or wheeled walkers) all the way to school.

The school is one of over 57 running the WOW programme in north Wales.

Lesley Griffiths MS joined pupils and teachers to talk to them about their walk to school and the benefits of keeping active.

Lesley Griffiths, Member of the Senedd for Wrexham, said: “I really enjoyed meeting with some of the pupils from Victoria Community Primary School during National Walking Month and it was wonderful to hear how much they enjoy their walk to and from school every day.

“It’s inspiring to see how schools like Victoria Community Primary School, with support from Welsh Government, are encouraging pupils and their families to walk, wheel, scoot or cycle to school as much as possible.

“Walking and wheeling to school is a magical thing: it benefits our health, it’s good for the environment, and it’s a great way to spend time in our local communities. I’m sure that other families will feel encouraged to leave the car at home and walk or wheel to school.”

Julia Crear, Head of Projects at Living Streets, said: “We’re so pleased that Lesley Griffiths MS could join us to celebrate National Walking Month at Victoria Community Primary School.

“It’s fantastic to see how much the school and pupils are benefitting from walking to school because it helps children get the recommended 60 minutes of physical activity a day needed to stay fit, healthy and happy. I’m sure that today’s visit will inspire more pupils and schools across Wales to try walking to school.”

Living Streets’ Walk to School Week takes place during National Walking Month (20-24 May 2024) and encourages families from across the UK to walk or wheel to school. Last year, a record number of over 200,000 pupils took part.

Around 50 per cent of primary school children in Wales walk to school and Living Streets is working to reverse the decline in walking rates. WOW schools typically see an increase in walking rates by 23 per cent with a 30 per cent reduction in cars driving to the school gates.

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