Children step up speeding protest

Pupils in Year 4 from Richard Avenue Primary school with their petition for the road's around their school to be made into 20 mph speed zone.
Pupils in Year 4 from Richard Avenue Primary school with their petition for the road's around their school to be made into 20 mph speed zone.
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PROTESTING children have stepped up their fight against speeding drivers causing chaos outside their school.

Fed-up pupils from Sunderland’s Richard Avenue Primary School have collected hundreds of signatures in a bid for the road outside the Barnes school to become a 20mph zone.

New ward candidate Rebecca Atkinson is backing the kids’ campaign before it is passed on to the Department of Transport for final approval.

She said: “I think the 20mph speed limit is going to make people more aware.”

“Sadly, Hurstwood Road is a bank where people can put their foot down and not realise there is a school at the top.

“We think a 20mph zone will make people really aware that they need to curb their speed.

“The residents have been so supportive and are really in favour of it.

“There have been three reported accidents in the past year, none fatal thankfully, and it is all due to speed.”

Barnes councillor Michael Essl will be taking the request forward to a meeting of the city council next month.

Hundreds of the pupils recently staged a mass school walkout in protest at their parents’ driving .

Armed with banners and posters, 350 children downed their pens and pencils and marched out of their classrooms in the bid to make mams and dads slow down.

The children, along with their teachers, fear that unless road safety outside the school is improved, it is only a matter of time before a child is injured or killed.

They want to send a message to parents battling school-run traffic, who park illegally on nearby zig-zag lines.

Pat Lamb, a personal, social and health leader at the school, said: “The main thing is that we want to see the speed limit brought down to 20mph outside the school.

“It’s very congested and sometimes people park on the zig-zag lines or park up on the pathway.”

The school hopes to encourage parents to walk their children to school, to reduce traffic jams and boost fitness levels.

Mrs Lamb added: “It’s just so congested for the children. We do road safety in school, but with the best will in the world, it is very hard to cross.”

Twitter: @janethejourno