Getting young people active

Sustrans helps hundreds of thousands of young people throughout the UK to travel actively and safely. Our key areas of work include:


We have more than 140 expert officers working intensively in over 2,400 schools across the UK and we are supporting several hundred more.

Our officers have an enormous impact within a year, through a planned programme of activities providing information, resources and encouragement - then continue to support the school as it increasingly takes the lead, often through our School Mark scheme.

Read about the benefits and outcomes of our work with young people in Transforming Young People's Travel (pdf), including case studies from schools and communities, or find out more about how our officers work with schools.

We also have brilliant resources, incentive schemes, guides and events to help schools and professionals working with young people to encourage active, sustainable travel - both inside and outside the classroom.

Active Schools guide for school leaders

Active children do better in every possible way. Their mental and physical health improves, they perform better in school, are better behaved and have better concentration and attendance.

That’s why, in partnership with Nike, we’ve helped to create a new Active Schools guide developed specially for school leaders, explaining in simple steps how to make schools more active.

It shares best practice and success stories from around the world, offers guidance, advice and support and helps school leaders to inspire pupils to have early positive experiences of physical activity. Get started and download it here.

Universities and colleges

Our work so far with universities, teaching hospitals and further education colleges has made a real impact with measurable increases in the number of students and staff walking and cycling. 

Find out more about our work in universities and colleges.

School street design

Wherever possible we work with partner organisations to make streets around schools safer for children. This can include improving crossings or building new walking and cycling routes to link schools to their communities and to the National Cycle Network.  We can also deliver a community-led design approach.

National campaigns and competitions

We run a number of national campaigns and competitions for schools each year. The Big Pedal is the UK’s biggest school cycling and scooting event. In 2015, more than 1,300 schools made over 1.4 million journeys by bike or scooter over just two weeks.

Schools can also take on Sustrans' Big Shift - our free to access online challenge which sets targets based on how pupils currently travel to school. Schools can choose any five days and participate as a whole school, in individual classes or in year groups. They can then repeat the challenge to improve on their achievements, as well as see how they compare to other schools.

Contact us

If you have an enquiry about young people and active travel or would like to discuss how we can help or work with you, please email