Bristol launches Bike Smart campaign

Bristol residents close off road to traffic to launch ‘Bike Smart’ campaign as those on two wheels account for more than a third of deaths and serious injuries on South West’s roads.

Children and their families from Brunel Fields Primary School joined residents of Arthur Milton Street for a street play session organised by road safety charity Brake and Playing Out – the Bristol-based national street play organisation.

The event marked the start of UK Road Safety Week, which this year focuses on the theme of ‘Bike Smart’. Analysis by Brake has found that in the South West more than a third (36%, a total of 797) of all deaths and serious injuries on the roads are those travelling by bicycle or motorbike.

The children were helping Brake call for drivers to be ‘Bike Smart’ by slowing down, taking care to look properly at junctions and doing the ‘Dutch reach’ to avoid car dooring.

The street play event took place on Arthur Milton Street between 8am and 9am to allow pupils, their families and residents to enjoy cycling without fear of traffic and highlight how street play sessions can create safe, pollution-free spaces within communities so children can play and ride their bikes safely.

The event was also attended by Avon Fire and Rescue Service, Living Streets, Bristol Council 20 mph team, Travel West, the Bike Doctor, Gloucestershire County Cricket Club, and Bristol City Councillors Eleanor Combley and Martin Fodor.

Dave Nichols, community engagement manager at Brake, said, ‘Road Safety Week is a vital loudspeaker for individuals, communities and organisations to shout about road safety and raise awareness of the risks on our roads. We hope that through our launch event in Bristol we can demonstrate the benefits that cycling can have for our whole society. With one bike rider being killed or seriously injured every hour in Britain, there is no better time for us all to be more Bike Smart.’