Local MP Jon Cruddas encourages children at Beam Primary to keep pedalling
Pupils at Beam Primary School in Dagenham were visited by Jon Cruddas MP for Dagenham and Rainham last Friday, the 23rd March, 2012, who urged them on in the final day of the three-week Big Pedal competition.   
The Big pedal is the UK’s biggest schools cycling event led by charity Sustrans.  Beam Primary is one of more than 100 schools in London and 1,200 UK-wide that has spent the last three weeks competing against each other to get the most pupils, parents and teachers cycling or scooting to school.
It’s designed to inspire children to travel more actively to and from school on a regular basis to benefit their health and help tackle issues like local traffic congestion, as currently one in five cars on urban roads at 8:35am on a school day is doing the school run.
Jon Cruddas MP, said: “Beam Primary, like so many other schools in London, has made a real effort with Sustrans to help its pupils cycle or scoot to school, and the enthusiasm they have all shown during The Big Pedal is testament to their hard work.  Hopefully, the fun they have had over the last three weeks will inspire even more pupils to cycle the school journey regularly, and feel healthier for it. It’s a great habit to get into!”
Through cycle skills training, bike maintenance sessions, bike breakfasts and other fun activities, Sustrans has helped to double the proportion of pupils cycling the school journey in the schools it works with across the UK.
Andy Casson, Sustrans Officer who works with pupils at Beam Primary and other schools in Barking and Dagenham, says: ‘We know that around half of children want to cycle to school but only 4 per cent actually do.  Our work helps to give children the confidence and skills to cycle, making them more active and healthy, giving them the independence and confidence that is vital to every child’s development and helping them to arrive at school more alert and ready to learn.’
To find out more visit thebigpedal.org.uk/