SHROPSHIRE Council is gearing up to implement an 18-month School Streets pilot at six schools across the county, starting in February next year.

The move comes after the Government's minister for roads and local transport signed the Order, granting the council the power to enforce the scheme using automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) cameras.

School Streets are designated areas outside school gates where temporary restrictions on motorized traffic are imposed during drop-off and pick-up times, allowing only permit holders to access the street.

Richard Marshall, Shropshire Council's Cabinet member for highways, emphasized that the initiative aims to enhance road safety for all users, particularly around schools, rather than being directed against motorists.


He said: “This is excellent news and means Shropshire Council is on track to be the first rural council with a School Streets programme and the power to enforce moving traffic offences. This is not a move against motorists, but it is important that we make the roads safe for all users, especially around schools.”

The enforcement of School Streets using ANPR cameras will mark the first use of the newly granted powers to enforce 'moving traffic' offenses by Shropshire Council.

The six schools participating in the trial are Gobowen Primary School, Market Drayton Junior School, Woodside Primary School in Oswestry, Mereside Primary School in Shrewsbury, Whitchurch Junior School, and Castlefields Primary School in Bridgnorth.

Additionally, the new powers will also enable the enforcement of the existing School Street at Coleham Primary School in Shrewsbury, which was implemented using coronavirus powers.

During the initial six months of the pilot, a grace period will be provided for first-time offenders. Richard Holden MP, the minister for roads and local transport, expressed his delight at seeing Shropshire Council receive these powers in a letter to Lezley Picton, the council's leader.

Kirstie Hurst-Knight, the Cabinet member for children and education, welcomed the news, highlighting the positive impact the School Streets scheme will have on children's ability to walk, scoot, and cycle to school safely.

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The School Streets pilot will be fully funded through grant funding from the Department for Transport (DfT), with an estimated cost of approximately £31,000 for schools equipped with one camera and £62,000 for schools with two cameras.

Any surplus generated from the enforcement of School Streets will be reinvested into the project to facilitate its expansion across the county.

In a letter to Lezley Picton, leader of the council, Richard Holden MP, minister for roads and local transport, said: “The Order designates Shropshire Council as a civil enforcement area for moving traffic contravention. I am delighted to see Shropshire Council receiving these powers.”