Being safe and being seen – Sunderland school children brighten up their bikes for winter

Sam Laing of cycling charity Sustrans with pupils from Ryhope Junior School who won a competition to 'bling their bikes' as part of Be Safe and Seen

Sam Laing of cycling charity Sustrans with pupils from Ryhope Junior School who won a competition to 'bling their bikes' as part of Be Safe and Seen

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PUPILS at a Wearside school have brightened up their bikes and scooters for the winter.

Sustrans schools officer Sam Laing invited children at Ryhope Junior School to “bling up” their rides, with the best from each class winning a prize.

Coinciding with Road Safety Week, Sam asked the youngsters to come up with some bright ideas to ensure they are seen in dark conditions.

He said: “I was impressed with the effort that the pupils put in. There were some great blinged-up bikes and sparkling scooters.

“This is a fun activity with a serious message about the steps we can take to make ourselves more visible to others at dusk or when it’s dark.

“Though darker evenings may be a worry for parents, this shouldn’t prevent them from encouraging their children to cycle, scoot or walk to school.”

Sustrans top tips to “Be Safe and Be Seen” include using a well-lit route, having correct lights on bikes, jazzing up bikes with fluorescent stickers and wheel spoke decorations and wearing bright clothing with fluorescent items.

Sustrans works in schools across Tyne and Wear, in partnership with GoSmarter, encouraging pupils and parents to make cheaper, greener, healthier, journeys to school and encourages walking and cycling especially in winter when children won’t be playing out as often.

Melanie Carls, programme manager for Go Smarter, said: “We were delighted to support this fun activity which incorporates a serious safety message. Go Smarter encourages cycling and walking to school which keeps our children healthy and reduces congestion on our roads.”