Pupils from Ilderton Primary School have helped plant flower beds and a new green screen at the school to provide some protection from harmful traffic fumes and noise.
The school has a playground that is lower than the busy Ilderton Road, which runs alongside it and, as a result, pollutants were able to easily enter the school playground.
Now, thanks to support and funding from Southwark Council, the school has a barrier of ivy, evergreen trees and planting between the road and the playground, plus extra flowerbeds and trees on the other side of the area.
Reducing air pollution and improving health and the environment are amongst the council’s key objectives for the regeneration of the Old Kent Road area. There are currently 13 schools in the Old Kent Road area, including Ilderton Primary, and the council has been undertaking audits at each of them to ensure future developments in the neighbourhood are informed by data and learning on local air quality.
Old Kent Road ward councillor, Cllr Richard Livingstone, Cabinet Member for Environment, Transport Management and the Climate Emergency, joined the pupils to help plant tulip bulbs for next spring.
He said: “Southwark Council is committed to tackling the London-wide air quality crisis head on and launched it ambitious Air Quality strategy in 2017. There is growing evidence that projects like green screens around our schools can capture and reduce air pollution before it gets into our playgrounds, in this case by up to 50 percent. I was really pleased to see the work and join the children from the school council to help plant up the new flower beds.”
Headteacher, Carol Askins said: “The new landscaping looks great and will make a real difference. We are really pleased with the work so far and the pupils are excited to see it when it is finished.”
Find out more about Air Quality in Southwark