Bristol School Streets

We are piloting School Streets in Bristol as part of our plans to improve road safety, encourage walking, cycling and scooting to and from school and improve the air quality and environment outside of schools.

What is School Streets?

School Streets has been introduced by local authorities across the UK. The scheme transforms roads directly outside of schools, removing motor vehicles so that only pedestrians and cyclists can gain access at school start and finish times.

At Bristol City Council we have commenced our own version of School Streets – a pilot scheme known as ‘Bristol School Streets’, with schemes underway with four Bristol schools. We plan to expand this to include additional schools, and would welcome schools we have not yet heard from to come forward and express their interest.

The Bristol School Streets pilot involves working with schools and their local communities to create a more pleasant environment for everyone, while ensuring residents, businesses, pedestrians and cyclists can still use the road.

Bristol School Streets aims to:

  • reduce the volume of traffic around the school gates
  • improve road safety for pupils
  • encourage more pupils to walk, scoot or cycle to school
  • improve the air quality and environment at the school gates making it a more pleasant space for everyone

In February 2020 we launched the pilot scheme at two schools: St Peter’s CofE Primary School and Wansdyke Primary School.

In May 2021 we are launching School Streets at two additional schools; Redfield Educate Together Primary Academy and Victoria Park Primary School, with plans to expand the pilot scheme to include additional schools across the city in the next two years.

We will monitor and assess the impact of Bristol School Streets before deciding whether each scheme should be made permanent.

The schools involved are:

  • Schools that are interested in taking part in Bristol School Streets, both primary and secondary, will be put through an initial assessment. This will look at previous engagement with active travel and walk to school schemes, site feasibility, amongst other criteria.

    If you would like your school to be considered for Bristol School Streets, you can now register your interest by completing a short online form.

    Please register your interest by completing the form by 5pm on Friday 14 May 2021. Schools will then be notified by the end of May 2021 on whether they have been successful in this initial stage.

  • Each School Street is unique and will depend on many factors; such as road layout. However, in general the street(s) around a school temporarily close at school start and finish times and become a ‘School Streets zone’ during these times. This means closing the road to vehicle traffic and giving those walking, wheeling or cycling priority during short periods at the beginning and end of the school day. Vehicles are not allowed to enter the street during these times unless they have been granted an exemption, which must be agreed in advance.

    In all cases exemptions are granted to Blue Badge holders. In some cases, exemptions will be granted to residents and businesses living or working within the zone so they can still move freely – this varies from scheme to scheme and is decided on an individual basis.

    There should be clear signage to inform drivers that they are entering a school streets zone. The zone will be enforced and motor vehicles entering the zone without an exemption permit could be issued with a warning or fine.