PUPILS in Otley are celebrating reaching a national leader board of schools making strides to walk or wheel to school.

Westgate Primary School is one of ten schools on the WOW Top Ten leader board for February 2024.

WOW - the walk to school challenge from charity Living Streets sees pupils record how they get to school using the interactive WOW Travel Tracker with those who walk, wheel, cycle, scoot or ‘Park and Stride’ to school being awarded a monthly WOW badge.

The WOW Top Ten helps boost pupils’ engagement in WOW and increases walking rates at schools. With a few challenges scattered across the school year, WOW Top Ten supports pupils’ health and wellbeing while reducing congestion and pollution around the gates.

This term, pupils at Westgate Primary School took part in the spring WOW Top Ten which asked them to walk to school as many times as possible between February 1 and 29. Pupils who live too far away or are not able to walk the whole way to school were encouraged to Park and Stride by asking their parents or carers to park at least ten minutes away from the school and walk or wheel the rest of the way.

In England, 41 per cent of 5–10-year-olds are normally driven to school. However, just 10 per cent of journeys recorded on the WOW Travel Tracker by pupils at Westgate Primary School are car trips all the way to the school gates.

Stephen Edwards, Chief Executive, Living Streets said: “We’re very happy to reward pupils from Westgate Primary School as part of the WOW Top Ten. Walking to school is a simple way for children to meet the recommended 60 minutes of physical activity a day needed to stay fit, healthy and happy. It can also reduce congestion, air pollution and road danger outside the school gates.

“It’s great that pupils at Westgate Primary School are benefitting from walking to school. They are an inspiration and I’m sure that they’ll encourage other children and their families to follow in their footsteps.”