During the last year more than 8,000 pupils aged between 10 and 12 learnt to be ‘road savvy’ on their bikes, thanks to an initiative co-ordinated by the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority.

The free scheme for schools has been praised by teachers who say it is keeping children safe as well as helping them to be fit.

Pupils in more than 250 schools across Knowsley, Liverpool, Sefton, St Helens and Wirral have been taught a range of skills to help them stay safe while cycling on the road.

The training is primarily aimed at children in years five, six and seven so they are fully prepared for high school and equipped to stay safe on the roads.

Metro Mayor of the Liverpool City Region, Steve Rotheram, said:

“We are fully committed to encouraging people to use healthier and greener transport, which is why we’re investing in major projects including a 600km walking and cycling network.

“However it is just as important that people, and especially children, have the skills they need to stay safe while they are out and about, which is why we support this training.  

“Teaching these essential bike and road safety skills is so important, so that children are prepared for the transition into high school in the autumn, especially when the nights get darker earlier.

“One accident is one too many and this is why the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority is committed to funding this important scheme.”

Paul Deakin, in charge of safeguarding at Alsop High School, in Liverpool, said: “We recently took part in Bike Right Level Three training with 60 year seven students. They really enjoyed the course and learnt so much about road safety and awareness. The roads are so busy around the school, so this safety awareness training is particularly important.

“I have noticed over the last year, more and more students are riding into school. We have over a hundred students who choose to ride their bikes into school. We fully support and encourage students cycling and have witnessed the obvious health and wellbeing benefits.”

Cllr Liam Robinson, portfolio holder for Transport and Air Quality, added:

“This is great work by the team. The programme not only teaches young people the importance of road safety but will also help encourage a new generation to travel by bike, which has huge benefits for the city region – helping reduce emissions and improve air quality as well as improving people’s health and wellbeing.”

The project is co-ordinated by Liverpool City Region Combined Authority and delivered by Bikeright. It is funded through the Department for Transport and the Merseyside Road Safety Partnership.

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