children walking to school - gates

Parents across Nantwich and Cheshire East are being urged to stay clear of school gates when pupils finally return to classes later this week.

Around 56,000 children and young people will be returning to more than 170 schools and colleges across the borough.

The authority is concerned many parents and carers will choose to take their children to school by car.

But active travel initiatives are being pushed to encourage pupils to walk, cycle or scoot.

Schemes such as “park and stride” aim to relieve congestion where parents park or drop off in a safe place away from school gates with a short walk for the rest of the journey.

Pupils travelling on school buses must also comply with government guidance to minimise the risk of coronavirus, including use of hand sanitiser when boarding and/or disembarking, and face coverings except those exempt.

Parents are warned there is a delay in issuing school bus passes, and the council has arranged a two-week grace period where young people can travel without showing their pass until it arrives.

Cllr Laura Crane, Cheshire East Council cabinet member for highways and waste, said: “Walking, cycling or scooting to school are some of the simplest ways to reduce congestion and pollution around school gates.

“As we emerge from the Covid-19 restrictions, the benefits of active travel on improved mental and physical wellbeing are more important than ever.

“We recognise that for some people, walking to school isn’t possible, and I urge everyone who does the school run by car to keep the routes around the school gates clear by parking a safe distance away and walking the last 10 minutes where possible.”

Cllr Kathryn Flavell, Cheshire East Council cabinet member for children and families, said: “I understand the return to school may feel daunting for some parents.

“I’d like to reassure them that teams across the council are working tirelessly with schools and transport providers to implement safety measures in readiness for the new term.

“We’d like to ask parents and carers who have to drive, to help us to ensure children and young people get to and from school safely and relieve congestion by planning their journeys and parking in a safe and considerate location.”

Parents are advised to check their school website and social media regularly for latest information from their school and details about drop off and pick up arrangements.

Information on transport arrangements in place from September 1 is at

(Library image courtesy of CEC for display only)

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