School pupils right across Northern Ireland have been rewarded for their efforts to use more sustainable transport during the 2016/17 Translink Eco-Schools Travel Challenge - and the north coast is well represented!
A special prize-giving took place at Belfast Central Station during Translink’s Bus + Train Week, June 5 – 11; a celebration of the benefits of using public transport.
Over a two-week period, 24 local schools participated in the ‘Translink Eco-Schools Travel Challenge’ with 1640 pupils monitoring their travel patterns and making an effort to walk, cycle, use the bus or train for the school run. There was a massive shift away from car use to sustainable travel with 11,464 sustainable journeys made.
Mill Strand PS, Portrush were among the top performers encouraging pupils and parents to choose more environmentally-friendly transport modes. Kilmoyle PS, Ballymoney also won an Ulsterbus Tours educational class coach trip and day out in Dublin.
Thanking pupils, parents and teachers for their participation, Gordon Milligan, Deputy Group Chief Executive, Translink, said: “Congratulations to all 24 schools who successfully completed the travel challenge.
“By holding this event during Bus + Train Week we want to encourage more people to choose public transport which plays an important role in making Northern Ireland a place where people want to live, work and visit. And it’s very encouraging to see more people getting on board – over 1.5 million additional fare-paying passenger journeys were made last year.
“Our services keep people connected and helps address the challenge of congestion and climate change creating healthier towns and cities. On an individual level, ‘active travel’ modes give people choices, freedom and more opportunities in terms of business, education, shopping and leisure activities.
“Every pupil here today sets a shining example to other young people and we would like to thank them for participating in the Challenge and joining us during Bus + Train Week as we say #GetonboardNI!” said Gordon.
Schools interested in participating in the next Translink Eco-Schools Travel Challenge as part of the Eco-Schools Awards Scheme can call 028 9073 6920 or click www.translink.co.uk/ecoschools/. For details on Ulsterbus Tours Educational Trips click www.ulsterbustours.com or call 028 9033 7004.