Plan your route for your cycle bus
The first step is to plan your route. You’ll need to consider the following factors
Distance - approximately 2km in length
Topography - relatively flat roads are most suitable
Catchment - are your stops located near to housing estates or other high populated areas?
Timing - arrival time at schools
Levels of traffic along the route
You can use Mapometer to assist you in planning your cycle route.
It’s important to identify a safe route to enter the school grounds. Once at school, consider where bikes can be parked. You may need to investigate if the school or janitor can identify additional space for bikes.
Set up a meeting with important stakeholders
It’s essential that all stakeholders play a part in this project and you must make sure that they understand their responsibilities. The best way to start this is by organizing with the school and parents.
School Management and Staff
You will need to liaise with the school to ensure you have a point of contact within the school. Their role is to work in tandem with the Cycle Bus planning team to ensure the needs and concerns of the school and children are met. The point of contact can then promote the project in the school and circulate sign-up forms.
Communicate with parents to make them aware of the new Cycle Bus. It’s a good idea to get the schools to circulate an email containing all the information pertaining to the Cycle Bus. Parents can also give you feedback on your project and help you improve your route to suit the needs of the students.
Participating students should be briefed on the procedures of the Cycle Bus when possible before the journey begins. Children joining along the route for the first time should be guided and supported by the marshals to the rear of the convoy.
When on the road, make sure you consider the following factors:
Many children have not cycled on the road before joining the Cycle Bus, haven’t cycled in a long time or have low levels of fitness. Do your best to support these children through guidance, praise and encouragement.
Show them how to choose an appropriate gear for the incline
Remind them to leave a safe space between them and the person in front of them.
Remind them to keep both their hands on the handlebars.
The local green schools programme or any travel schemes might be useful to contact as they can provide support for your Cycle Bus. It might also be worthwhile to contact the councillor from your Borough or ditrict to provide additional support.
Before you get on the road, there is some essential equipment to ensure the safety of everyone in the Cycle Bus.
Make sure all of the students in the Cycle Bus have the following equipment.
An appropriately sized bike in good working order
Front and rear lights
The marshaling group have the following mandatory equipment:
Simple mechanical set
First aid kit
Front and rear lights on each marshal’s bike
All members of the Cycle Bus will need to wear a hi-vis jacket.
We recommend the purchase of cameras for the front and rear marshals
at a minimum to help document any incidents that might occur.
Launch and keep communication.
Your Cycle Bus is now ready to launch!
Now it is important to keep communication with all stakeholders - the school, students and marshals.
Form a group-chat for communication with the marshals and keep the school informed on possible news such as cancellations of Cycle Bus.
Keep the community informed and engaged in your new project by setting up social media accounts.