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29/07/2021

Laois schools get grants for safer walking and cycling

Laois schools included in the Safe Routes to School Programme

laois schools

Cycling to school safely

Schools in Portlaoise, Mountmellick and Abbeyleix are set to benefit from a scheme aimed at making it safer for children to walk or cycle to school.

Laois Offaly TD and Minister of State at the Department of Finance Sean Feming said three schools had been included in the first round of the Safe Routes to School Programme. He said the scheme, announced in March, is designed to encourage as many pupils and students as possible in primary and post-primary schools to walk and cycle to their school.

"I am delighted to see 3 Laois Schools included in this first round. This programme aims to create safer walking or cycling routes to schools within our communities which could range from an upgraded path , new cycle lane or front of school work which will enhance access to school grounds.

"Being able to cycle or walk safely to school is the healthier option for our younger people, and our community will also benefit with less congestion and pollution.

"Round One will work with a designated Infrastructure Officer from Green-Schools who will liaise with the school and Laois County Council as works are planned and carried out. Works can start this summer, however the finalisation of these projects is dependent on local circumstances.

"I look forward to work commencing and would like to say well done to those involved who applied and secured selection of this work for their schools," he said.

The Laois schools are:

Maryborough N.S, The Downs Portlaoise

Scoil Mhuire N.S, Abbeyleix

Scoil Phádraig Naofa N.S, Mountmellick

Minister Fleming added that the programme is funded by the Department of Transport through the National Transport Authority and is supported by the Department of Education. The programme will run on a rolling basis, so schools who have applied and not included in this round will not need to reapply. €15 million has been allocated for projects in Round 1.

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