Inside the Council: Keeping pupils safe is priority

20 mph signs.
20 mph signs.
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As you read this article we will be one week in to a new school year and children across the Brighouse area will be anxiously settling in to their new environments.

May I take this opportunity to wish them well for the new academic year; I hope it is a happy, safe and successful year for them.

Along with my colleagues in the Conservative group on Calderdale Council I have been looking at ideas for making the roads safer for our young people, particularly around schools. One measure we are particularly keen to consider is that of 20mph limits on roads around all schools in the borough.

20mph speed limits in Calderdale are not new, a number of schools already have this limit imposed in their vicinity, but this piecemeal approach can be confusing to road users and pedestrians alike. For that reason we think it would make sense to have a blanket ban around all our schools.

We want proposals that are simple to understand, financially viable in these difficult times and will have the backing of the vast majority of people across Calderdale and 20mph limits on all roads around our schools would seem to meet those criteria.

Research has shown that lowering speed limits on key roads lowers the overall speed of traffic. If an accident was to happen the lower speed limit, it is shown to save lives and reduce injuries. I think it is important that we make the areas around our schools as safe an environment for our children as possible.

This is why, over the coming weeks, along with colleagues across the Brighouse area, I will be asking local residents for their views on this proposal. We will be delivering thousands of short surveys to households asking residents to give us their views on their proposal and other road safety ideas.

I would encourage those people who receive the survey to send it back to us, it costs nothing, takes seconds to complete and will help us have a clearer understanding of the views of local people.

In addition to the surveys we are delivering to households you may find one of your local Conservative councillors at the school gates talking to parents regarding this issue.

If you see me, or one of my colleagues, at your school gate, then talk to us about your concerns.

If you don’t receive a survey form through your letter box feel free to let us know your thoughts by emailing them to

In addition to lowering speed limits in the vicinity of our schools there is one other thing that parents can help with to make our children safer at start and end of school. If you drop your child off at school by car think carefully about where and how you park your car outside the school.

Unfortunately our young people are not always as road wise or as attentive to dangers as we would wish and so it befalls each and every one of us to be aware of the dangers we pose.

Working together I am sure we can make the environment around our schools safer for all our children.

BY Councillor Christopher Pillai