[T]housands of school pupils in Cumbria will be getting on their bikes and scooters for a national travel-to-school challenge starting next week.
A total of 47 schools in the county have signed up for this year’s Big Pedal event, which runs from 23 April – 4 May. The Big Pedal promotes sustainable travel and encourages children, parents and staff to choose two wheels for their journey to school.
Last year 52 Cumbrian schools clocked up more than 17,000 cycling and scooting journeys during the Big Pedal fortnight.
Councillor Keith Little, Cumbria County Council’s Cabinet Member for Transport, said: “The Big Pedal is a great way for families to think about ways of getting to school without using the car. Schools in Cumbria recognise the value of this annual challenge, which encourages active travel and is good for the environment, and it’s pleasing to see Cumbrian schools regularly among the top performing nationally.”
Judith Aris, Active Travel Officer at Cumbria County Council, said: “The Big Pedal event is not only good for the environment, but travelling actively to school results in healthier and fitter children, and we hope they will carry this habit in to their teens and adulthood.
“This is a fantastic way to get children thinking about their physical health and wellbeing, and cycling and scooting to school is a brilliant way to start!”
The Big Pedal is organised by Sustrans, a national sustainable travel charity, supported locally by Cumbria County Council’s Active Travel team. The county’s winning small and large primary schools notching up the most two-wheeled journeys during the challenge will win a cycle or scooterpod for their school. The winning Cumbrian secondary school will win a trip to the National Cycling Centre in Manchester in June.
Entry to the Big Pedal is free of charge, with the option of dressing up as a super hero on the final day of the challenge to raise money for Sustrans. Various vouchers will be up for grabs for the best photos taken during the challenge!
Find out more about the challenge and follow the progress of Cumbrian schools at http://bigpedal.org.uk/lists/24