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Newker Primary School Best Foot Forward Fortnight


Situated next to an extensive housing development in Chester-le-Street the school suffers congestion at school times as it is located on a main route into the centre of town. Their Walking Buses have helped to reduce congestion during the school run.

Main aims and objectives

The main aims of the travel plan for Newker Primary School are:

  • to encourage more walking on the journey to and from school
  • to have a greater understanding of the geography of the immediate area
  • to have a greater understanding of the impact of traffic management schemes on our school and the local environment
  • collecting and analysing travel data to show the effectiveness of considered schemes
  • both the pupils and the community to improve awareness and behaviour with regard to pedestrian skills, traffic and health issues.

New Year's resolutions

January is a time when we all make New Year's resolutions about keeping fit and healthy; so the Travel Plan working group thought that this would be an appropriate time of year to launch their Best Foot Forward Fortnight campaign. This was an intensive two week campaign to encourage all the school community to travel on foot. Several promotional leaflets and posters promoting the walk to school message to parents and the rest of the school were designed and distributed. The school also held special assemblies to promote the health benefits of walking.

The campaign continued with the pilot of two Walking Bus schemes operating from local public houses on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Pupils are accompanied by school staff and parent volunteers. It is a good chance for children to see their local area, arrive at school alert and ready to learn. One pupil commented, "We think it's really fun because you walk down to school and you get to see your friends".

The trial was an enormous success with around 20 children using each bus, and the Walking Bus turned into a permanent feature of the school run.

The school operates a reward scheme where those children using the walking bus for 70% of the term receive a badge.

Megan says, "I like the animals on my pin badges - they are good fun. I like to wear them so that everybody knows I walk to school!".

Grace enjoys the physical benefits of walking in an organised group, "I like the bus because it helps keep you healthy and it's good fun."

The school can see a big difference with fewer parked cars outside the school.

The school have now produced a banner to promote walking. Best of all, it is felt by the School Management Team that the Walking Buses have helped to promote a good reputation for the school amongst people in the local area. The children's excellent behaviour has also been noticed.

Contact us
Travel Planning
03000 265 309
Our address is:
  • Regeneration and Local Services
  • Sustainable Transport
  • County Hall
  • Durham
  • County Durham
  • United Kingdom
  • DH1 5UQ
0191 383 4080
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