927 primary and 49 secondary schools took part in this year’s promotion, which is organised by Sustrans. Kids completed 847,725 journeys to and from school by bike, or on foot, clocking up a combined 1,075,047 miles.
Funded by the Bike Hub levy, this year’s event took place between February 28th and March 20th. An estimated £358,000 in unnecessary fuel costs were saved by opting for two wheels as opposed to four, estimated Sustrans.
Malcolm Shepherd, Sustrans chief executive said:
“It’s a tragedy that so many of our children are denied opportunities to be active, creating serious health problems which worsen as they get older. Cycling and walking are key ingredients for tackling childhood inactivity and obesity, but sadly too many children and their parents don’t feel safe on our roads.
“Local authorities and central government must help improve the health of our children by making walking and cycling the safest, easiest and most enjoyable ways to travel.”
Research shows that children who are physically active are less likely to suffer from a range of diseases as they get older, including coronary heart disease and stroke, many forms of cancer, type 2 diabetes and mental ill-health.
Nearly half of all UK children want to be able to get to school by bike but only four per cent actually do so, says Sustrans.