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Vaughan Gething MS joins Cardiff pupils for National Walking Month 

Vaughan Gething MS met children from his Cardiff South and Penarth constituency this morning (5 May) to celebrate Living Streets’ National Walking Month.

The Economy Minister joined pupils and teachers from Greenway Primary School in Rumney as they walked to school and talked to them about the benefits of keeping active.

Living Streets Cymru is part of the UK charity for everyday walking and campaigns to make walking for short journeys as easy and accessible as possible.

Greenway Primary School joined WOW – the walk to school challenge from Living Streets in May 2021. Since then, the school has seen an increase of families choosing to actively travel to school by either walking, wheeling, cycling, scooting or using the Park and Stride scheme. Only 6% per cent of pupils are currently driven to school.  

According to WOW Travel Tracker data, Greenway Primary School students have made over 14,000 active travel trips this year. Active travel at the school has increased from 45% to 80%, with 83% of school trips being made on foot or wheels in that time. The school is one of over 60 running the WOW programme in Cardiff. 

Vaughan Gething, Economy Minister and Member of the Senedd for Cardiff South and Penarth, said:

“I really enjoyed walking to school with some of the pupils from Greenway Primary School during National Walking Month and it was wonderful to hear how much they enjoy their walk to and from school every day. 

 “It’s inspiring to see how schools like Greenway, with help from Cardiff Council, have created an active travel plan and a safe route to school for children and their parents. Walking and cycling to school benefits our health, it's good for our environment, and as a parent who walks his son to school I can vouch that it’s excellent for our mental wellbeing too to have that regular pocket of time together without the usual distractions. I hope this encourages other families to leave the car at home and walk to school.”

Joshua James, Public Affairs Manager at Living Streets Cymru, said:

“We’re so pleased that the Economy Minister could join us to celebrate National Walking Month – and it was great for us to learn how pupils at Greenway Primary School are doing their best to walk, wheel, cycle or scoot to school.

“It's fantastic to see how much the school and pupils are benefitting from walking to school because it helps children get the recommended 60 minutes of physical activity a day needed to stay fit, healthy and happy. I’m sure that today’s visit will inspire more pupils and schools across Wales to try walking to school.” 

Living Streets’ Walk to School Week takes place during National Walking Month (15-19 May 2023) and encourages families from across the UK to walk or wheel to school. Last year, a record number of over 200,000 pupils took part.

Only around 50 per cent of primary school children in Wales walk to school and Living Streets is working to reverse the decline in walking rates. WOW schools typically see an increase in walking rates by 23 per cent with a 30 per cent reduction in cars driving to the school gates.


About the author

Sarah Philpott

Communications Coordinator, Living Streets / [email protected]