Merton is streets ahead

Transport Planning is runner up in National award

Merton came in the top three for the prestigious National Transport Awards 2002 in the Road Safety category.

The awards are recognition for local authorities that have successfully put their vision for safer roads into practice.

Merton’s holistic approach towards encouraging alternative forms of transport other than cars and the strategy for reduction of road casualties caught the judges imagination. They were also impressed with the new Road Safety Education material and the Cycle Training Programme, which Merton’s Transport Planning Section has introduced.

Part of Merton’s road safety initiatives is the introduction of ten walking buses where children walk to school in groups. The scheme is aimed at reducing the use of cars for the morning run and giving children a safe route to walk with adult supervision. Merton has also established road safety training courses to ensure those who want to cycle know the rules of the road and cycle safely.

Alison Broom, Head of Street Management, said: “This is great news. As the results show we are committed to getting people to leave the car at home and use different means of transport, and for this to be done safely. This will help to improve the local environment.

“We were the only London borough to be short listed in the final three for the award and were up against County Councils, including Shropshire. It is a real achievement for the Transport Planning and Road Safety team. It shows that policy can be effectively implemented to provide practical schemes and safety education initiatives for the public.’