Thursday, 1 March 2012

Could This be Your School Run?

We all know what the school run can be like. A nightmare. The school that my oldest boy goes to (primary school) is in a village where the majority of people who attend live within a mile of the school. Walking or cycling to or from school should be the default. To be fair the majority do walk. However, just the other day we all got a letter back from the school asking that parents not to drive into the school grounds at pick up and drop off time, and commenting that some drivers are parking badly (dangerously) and driving far too fast.

This is not the first time we have had a letter back about this. Last year the police patrolled for a while pulling up the offenders. It reduced for a while, but the problem is back again.

Don't get me wrong, there are times when using the car is most convenient. Say for instance you are dropping the kids off on the way to work a distance away (although a bike may still be an option....). However, it would not surprise me if some just drive to the school and drive back. It's not nice having to dodge the school run traffic.

However, the school run need not be so stressful. Watch this video from Assen in the Netherlands.

Notice how busy it is, notice how people do get in each others way. Notice though, how it is all done with a smile, and with absolutely minimal risk. Notice how there is not a hi-vis jacket or helmet in site.

Now imagine your local school. Imagine that instead of a stream of 4x4's and people carriers (we have a people carrier) you had a stream of bikes like in the video above.

Some say it can't be done. It can, and it has. So lets do it.

Oh and if you want to see this near a street near you, ride with us in Edinburgh on the 28th


  1. It's so different over there...
    A maintenance team going to the local sports ground with tools in hand!

    One day I pulled up in a village at about 12 to get some food from the shop (a Spar or something) and about 50 bikes appeared, apparently they all ride to the shops at lunchtime to get snacks. It was a bit of a shock to the system!

  2. I new I had a photo somewhere.

    Lunchtime at a Dutch village shop mobbed by kids on bikes!

  3. I have a regular correspondence with school's HT along these lines...most kids do walk, lots of parents cycle, but the minority in cars make it dangerous for us all.

    I'll leaflet the cycling parents about the rally! (hint, hint...)

  4. Thanks for the links Matt. I think it is going to happen. Looking forward to it! :-)

    SRD, yes I'll be passing on posters/leaflets to the school. :-)

    Watch this space......

  5. That was my school run in the northern canadian town I came from. Cycling safety was not something that even occurred to me as an issue until I moved Vancouver. It's funny how it isn't even in your consciousness when all is safe.