Rue des Coutures in St Martins will become Guernsey’s first ‘School Street’ and motor access will be temporarily restricted during certain times of the day (as part of a trial).
The week-long trial will begin on 29 March, reviewed, and then extended “should it prove successful”.
It was launched following concerns raised by students of St Martin’s Primary School. The school’s Headteacher, Clare Giles, was approached by the school’s ‘Rights Squad’ due to safety risks during drop-off and pick-up times.
Ms Giles reached out to Traffic and Highway Services to “see what could be done” and the ‘School Street’ initiative was born. It’s an initiative utilised elsewhere in the world and it involves roads having certain restrictions during drop-off and pick-up times.
Children at St Martin’s Primary School were so concerned about safety risks during drop-off and pick-up, they asked their Headteacher to support them to instigate a positive change.— States of Guernsey (@Govgg) March 17, 2023
The result is Guernsey’s first ‘School Street’ scheme.
Read more at https://t.co/2ZpradNWfO pic.twitter.com/nTr1vHQQ5e
St Martins is a UNICEF gold Rights Respecting School, one aspect of which is the ability for students to have a voice in how their school is run.
Ms Giles said: “Through our “Rights Squad”, our young people expressed significant concern about the risks they had encountered during pick-up and drop-off outside the school and a determination to do something to bring about positive change. I committed to supporting them following that feedback and I’m grateful for the help of Traffic and Highway Services in developing the St Martin’s School Street scheme.”
From 29 March Rue des Coutures will be closed on weekdays to traffic “except for cyclists and those vehicles accessing properties” from 8.30 - 9AM and 2.45 - 3.15PM.
The school has 550 children and it has approximately 1,000 people travelling to and from the school every day.
“We had an incident last term involving a cyclist and vehicle and pupils routinely report near misses,” said Ms Giles. “I am very proud of our young people for not only raising this issue with maturity and conviction, but also being heavily involved in the creation of what we hope will be a solution.”
Paul James is a Traffic and Highway Services Road Safety Officer, he said THS was happy to help with the request.
“A School Street will significantly improve the safety for the children and their carers as they make the final part of their journey into school and home again, with minimal disruption to the general community.”
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