Pupils rewarded for road safety designs asking drivers to ‘Think! Park Safely!’

Ruby-Mai (left) and Freya pictured with Freya's winning design. Also pictured: Elaine Cross from St Helens Borough Council's Road Safety Team (back) & Joanne Griffiths from Newton-le-Willows Primary School

Two Newton-le-Willows schoolchildren have been rewarded after winning a competition centred around road safety awareness near a local primary school.

Open to all pupils at Newton-le-Willows Primary School in Sanderling Road, the competition – run by St Helens Borough Council’s Road Safety Team – required the children to design circular road signs with the message ‘Think! Park Safely!’ to prevent parking at the school entrance in a bid to improve road and pedestrian safety, as well as reduce congestion around the school.

Ruby-Mai Ruane, now in her first year at Hope Academy, and Year 4 pupil Freya Thompson-Manison came out on top with their hedgehog and zebra crossing designs which have now been installed on a roundabout outside of the school.

Ruby-Mai and Freya pictured with Ruby-Mai’s winning design

St Helens Borough Council’s Road Safety Team works closely with schools throughout the academic year on a number of initiatives including the Junior Road Safety Officer programme which allows Year 5 and 6 pupils to develop ideas on how to make their school a safer place.

The team is also piloting the national School Streets programme at Thatto Heath Primary School and St Mary & St Thomas’ Primary School in Barton Close, St Helens Town Centre, with the view to roll out the scheme at other locations across the borough.

School Streets involves introducing a Temporary Traffic Regulation Order (TTRO) to prohibit traffic at drop-off and pick-up times during term time to allow extra space for people who are walking, cycling or scooting to school.

As well as promoting more active ways of travel to and from school, the initiative also clears school-related congestion, reduces air pollution, and makes the roads safer for everyone.

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