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Charity's plea for 20mph limits to protect pedestrians

The deputy chief executive of road safety charity Brake is urging drivers to slow down to 20mph or under around homes, schools and shops.

The message comes as thousands of schoolchildren take to the streets of Wales today to march for safer streets.

Kids want to be able to get out and walk and cycle, and by not making our streets safe, we are denying them the fun, active childhoods they deserve.

This has serious implications for their long-term health and wellbeing, the burden on our NHS, the environment, and our society as a whole.

If we are going to create an environment fit for our children we need to put them - not motor vehicles - first.

We are appealing to drivers to slow down to 20mph or less around homes, schools and shops and to local authorities in Wales to continue rolling out 20mph limits.

– Julie Townsend, Brake

Thousands of children to march for safer streets

Thousands of children are marching for safer streets across Wales Credit: PA / Marius Becker

Thousands of schoolchildren across Wales are taking to the streets today as part of a giant 'walking bus' to call for their streets to be made safer for walking and cycling.

A joint survey by road safety charity Brake and website webuyanycar.com has found three-quarters of students in the UK would like to walk and cycle more.

However, more than half worry they might be run over by traffic, with 81% saying drivers should slow down around schools and homes.

Almost 7,000 children from 48 schools across Wales are expected to participate in the walking bus event.

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Cartoons encourage pupils to belt-up

Christ the King Primary School welcome some special visitors Credit: ITV News

Pupils in Cardiff are being reminded how important it is to wear a seat belt with the help of some characters from the animation The Croods.

Figures released this week show that 10 per cent of parents fail to check if their children are wearing a seat belt and over a third of parents aren't aware of the dangers.

School children across the UK are learning the Croods Cross Code this week; a code which includes some important messages of road safety.

It's all part of Belt Up Week, a campaign led by safety charity Brake, which aims to educate children about the importance of road safety and always wearing a seatbelt.

Atomic Kitten star Natasha Hamilton is backing the campaign: ' “As a mother of three young children, I’m thrilled to be supporting Belt Up Week and helping kids learn about the importance of wearing seat belts and being careful on the roads on the way to and from school.”

Calls for drivers to keep to 20mph near schools

Many parents are in a difficult situation when it comes to letting their kids walk or cycle, often forced to weigh up the benefits of their kids being active and getting out and about with the risk of their child being knocked down and hurt.

We need to make it easier for them by making roads safer for children and people of all ages, to help kids have the fun, active childhood they deserve - and a proven way to do this is to reduce traffic speeds.

We're appealing to drivers to listen to the thousands of kids marching today, and take the simple step of slowing down to 20mph or less around homes, schools and shops. It's a case of putting kids before getting there a few minutes faster.

We're also urging government - and more local authorities in Wales - to work towards 20mph being the norm across all our communities, to help kids get walking without being put in danger.

– Julie Townsend, Brake

5,000 schoolchildren in 20mph campaign

Children from 44 schools across Wales are taking part in a Giant Walking Bus today Credit: ITV News

Thousands of schoolchildren from across Wales are taking part in a 'Giant Walking Bus' today calling for drivers to slow down to 20mph around schools, homes and shops.

The 'Go 20' campaign, organised by charity Brake, aims to protect children who already walk to school and encourage more to do so.

It also calls for more safety measures such as 20mph limits, pavements, paths and crossings. Around 5,000 children are expected to take part from 44 schools across Wales.

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