Published Tuesday 21 November 2023 at 16:34
Children from across the borough took part in a ‘first ever’ Road Safety Week walk through Blackburn town centre to raise awareness of staying safe on the roads.
Pupils from St Sila’s CE Primary School, Blackburn Central High School, St Bede’s RC High School, Pleckgate High School, Roe Lee Park Primary School and St Aiden’s Primary School took part in the walk through Blackburn town centre, starting off at the Town Hall.
They were joined by The Deputy Mayor of Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council Cllr Jim Shorrock, Lancashire’s Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner Andy Pratt, PCSOs and Police Officers, as well as members of the BwD Community Safety Team who organised the event.
Youngsters from each school worked together prior to the event decorating poles to measure height for those needing a booster seat when travelling. They wore high-vis jackets and fluorescent accessories to highlight the Be Bright Be Seen theme.
They were also joined by Dolly the road safety mascot was also carrying her custom-made pole accompanied by Councillor Jackie Floyd who first raised concerns around the traffic around Lammack Primary School and the safety of young people.
Cllr Jackie Floyd officially opened the event, she said:
We believe this walk is a first ever for Road Safety Week and we gathered today to hold this bright, fun, informative parade as a way of celebrating and sharing our collective work on road safety. Children end up with long term injuries for not wearing a seat belt and this can be prevented. The collaboration between the young people at all these schools, will have had many bold conversations that will ripple to their family members with those key messages.
Five people die each day on UK roads because of drivers speeding and awareness is being raised through Brake the Road Safety Charity.
Following the event, Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner, Andy Pratt, said:
Any opportunity to engage with the public about road safety and dangerous driving is a chance to raise awareness of the risks, it was great to see both pupils from primary and secondary schools lead the parade today. Policing alone cannot eliminate this issue, and it is through engagement like this that we can increase road safety awareness and bring people together and to make changes here in Lancashire. Targeting dangerous drivers is a key priority in Commissioner Andrew Snowden’s Fighting Crime Plan, and together we will continue to work with the Constabulary and partner organisations to make Lancashire’s roads safer.
Deputy Mayor, Cllr Jim Shorrock, said:
It is important that we get the message across to young people so that they all take care when out on the roads. Today’s event was a brilliant example of starting something that will have an impact on young people and how they stay can stay safe when walking to and from school. It was a great day event and the children walking through Blackburn made an impact, well done.
Katie Boulton, Community Safety Officer at Blackburn with Darwen borough Council, said:
Today’s walk was amazing and definitely highlights the importance of ‘Be Bright, Be Seen’ and car seat safety for all young people. We would like to thank all of the schools who participated, as well as our partners from the Police, Brake charity, the Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner and our very own Councillors – Councillor Jackie Floyd, Councillor Jim Shorrock and Councillor Katrina Fielding. The children were impeccably behaved and were a credit to each school. You could tell by their faces how much they enjoyed it.
Children must normally use a child car seat until they’re 12 years old or 135 centimetres tall, whichever comes first. Children over 12 or more than 135cm tall must wear a seat belt.
Road Safety Week runs from 19 – 25 November, for more information visit www.brake.org.uk.