Greenpeace Huddersfield has announced the winners of their local drawing competition after Cllr Paul Davies judged the entries sent in from school children across Kirklees. The competition was arranged as a ‘thank you’ to Kirklees Council for their ambitious plans to drive forward the agenda for better cycling and walking opportunities for Kirklees residents, against the backdrop of our climate emergency declaration.
Cllr Davies, who is responsible for Climate Change and Greener Kirklees, was invited to select the winners, from a short-listed selection, that were sent in from schools and individuals. The competition was split into two age groups, with the winners from each group receiving a £25 gift voucher to spend at Read Bookshop in Holmfirth, who donated some of the prize money.
Eleanor Jackson, aged 6, from Upperthong, won the ‘5-8’ category and Georgia Harker, aged 9, from Gomersal, won the ‘9-11’ category.
Cllr Paul Davies said: “I was delighted to be asked to judge the poster competition. Transport is a particularly big issue for us all and the Council’s ‘Walking and Cycling Framework’ really hopes to inspire more people to walk and cycle more often, both for work and leisure.
“We have set a target for Kirklees to be carbon neutral by 2038 and we all have a part to play in reaching this goal. Seeing local children so enthusiastic in making positive changes to improve our environment should really inspire us to think about the difference we can all make.”
The children were invited to imagine what their vision of cleaner and greener transport across Kirklees could look like. Wildlife was heavily emphasised, including more fish in ponds and lakes, more birds, more local animals and even unicorns. Clean air was also a big concern for children with their pictures showing clearer, sunny skies and safe places to walk, cycle or scoot.
June Graham, from Greenpeace Huddersfield, said: “Everybody benefits from better transport systems and we know our Council wants to take seriously improved cycleways and walkways. It is really important that here in Kirklees we don’t just put funding into more roads, so we are delighted Kirklees have started to develop a plan and it is fabulous that our young people in Kirklees are keen to show our Councillors what great cycleways and walkways could look like.”
Liz Hoyle, from Greenpeace Huddersfield added: “Kirklees Council is already doing a good job in encouraging greener transport routes. It would be fantastic if they also considered how to create low-traffic neighbourhoods across Kirklees to support their plans to reduce pollution. When Covid restrictions have been lifted, we cordially invite Boris Johnson to cycle up to Huddersfield and see for himself how additional Government funding for active travel would truly help level-up and support our local community.”
Kirklees Council was successful in securing almost £2 Million in November 2020 from the Government’s Active Travel Fund. The funding forms part of the £10.053 million the West Yorkshire Combined Authority has received to create more space for people to travel by bike and on foot, while easing the pressure on public transport and relieving congestion. This fund allows the council to accelerate its transport plans to cater for walkers and cyclists.