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Bee-friendly planters on Oakfield Road for Safer School Streets trial

Students from Oakfield Academy and Critchill School have worked with the Bee Friendly Trust to prepare a number of planters with pollinator-friendly plants. The planters will be installed ahead of the 18-month Safer School Streets trial, which is due to begin on Monday 22nd April. The preparation of the planters is part of a programme of engagement activities with pupils attending Safer School Streets schools, which have included ‘walking buses’ with Mojo Moves, ‘Dr Bike’ cycle repair clinics and BMX stunt shows.

‘Walking bus’ with Mojo Moves at Trinity First School

Ten-year-old Jacob, a Year 5 student at Oakfield Academy, said “It was fun getting the planters ready and it’ll be great to see the bees and other insects enjoying what we made with the Bee Friendly Trust. I completed my Bikeability training to get ready for the trial and I’m looking forward to riding my bike to school without so many cars.”

The Safer School Streets trial is due to begin on Monday 22nd April 2024, following the completion of highway improvements in the zones, which encompass Trinity First School, Critchill School and Oakfield Academy, and Avanti Park School on Park Road. The planters created by the Bee Friendly Trust with Oakfield and Critchill students will go into place along Oakfield Road as part of traffic-calming measures in the area.

During the 18-month trial, an Experimental Traffic Regulation Order (ETRO) will operate. Timed road closures will be in operation on Oakfield Road, between Broadway and the Oakfield Road/Nunney Road junction, Critch Hill, and Whitemill Lane, between 8.10am and 9am and 2.45 to 3.30pm. A separate timed closure will operate on Park Road between 8.25am and 8.55am and 3pm to 3.30pm. All closures run Monday to Friday in term time. There will also be a new 20mph zone around the wider area, some parking restrictions and road markings to denote pedestrian access.

There are limited exemptions for: blue badge holders; parents/guardians of pupils with EHC plans; school staff; access to residential properties within the restricted zone; healthcare workers; users of Harry’s Hydrotherapy Pool; school and public transport; emergency services; postal services; utilities; highway maintenance and street cleansing and waste collection.

The Safer School Streets project is a collaboration between active travel charity Sustrans, Somerset Council and Frome Town Council, and has been undertaken following consultation with residents, schools and parents. The consultation will continue throughout the trial and adjustments made as necessary. Somerset county councillor Martin Dimery said:

“A great deal of thought and time has been spent on the creation of this scheme. I congratulate Frome Town Council on taking this brave initiative to reduce traffic and increase the safety of children walking to school. I hope it will encourage less car dependence and reduce pollution. I really hope it works out for everyone.”

Information about the Safer School Streets scheme and opportunities to provide feedback during the trial is at https://bit.ly/safer-school-streets-24

11 April 2024
Last Updated
8 April 2024
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