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PARENTS COULD SAVE£520 MILLION A YEAR ON SCHOOL RUN

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Parents of 11-18 year olds could save£520 million a year if their child cycled to school. The research commissione...
Parents of 11-18 year olds could save£520 million a year if their child cycled to school. The research commissioned by Cycling England to coincide shows pupils could save time as well as cash. In fact, one in three parents (36%) think their children could save up to 40 minutes a day by cycling to school and 32% believe up to£4 a day could be saved.

Children who are ferried to school by car spend an average of two hours 35 minutes per week in their vehicle, which is equivalent to eight per cent of school time, compared with only five per cent of school time doing physical education.

Currently 81% of children travel less than five miles to school, a distance which can be covered by bike - however only two per cent cycle to school. Improved facilities would help to shift this trend as 37 per cent of mums and dads said if their child received on-the-road training and their area had good routes to schools, they would definitely let their child cycle to school.

Phillip Darnton, Chairman of Cycling England, said: 'Bike to School Week, which starts today, is a great opportunity for young people to give cycling a go.

'Children who cycle regularly to school will not only enjoy it, in many cases they will find it helps them to beat congestion, save money and ensure exercise plays a part in their daily routine. Establishing a habit of exercise is key, especially when you consider that inactive children are at risk of suffering from illnesses such as coronary heart disease later on in life.

It's very encouraging that parents will let their children cycle to school if they receive on the road training, as a new National Cycle Training Standard has been developed to do just that. Confidence that your child is properly trained gives parents the necessary assurance that youngsters have the skills to cope with today's road conditions. The fact that parents want to see better routes to school is also good news as we are working with partners to make this happen. If parents aren't aware of an existing safe cycle route to their school or want to find out more about cycle training, they can visit www.bikeforall.net for more information.'

For more information on cycling to school, log onto bikeforall.net

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