ROADS outside a trio of schools in Hampshire will be closed at drop-off and pick-up times as part of a pilot scheme.

A new trial is being launched by Hampshire County Council for School Streets, which sees stewards close the road a school is on from 8.15-9am and 2.30-3.30pm.

By cutting down the amount of traffic in the road, the council hopes to make these streets safer for children to walk or cycle to school instead.

Hampshire County Council’s executive member for highways operations, Councillor Russell Oppenheimer, said: ‘I am very pleased to see this scheme will be getting underway.

‘The benefits of doing this could be fantastic, both in terms of improving the physical and mental wellbeing of young people and parents,but also reducing traffic which, in turn, improves air quality and, more widely, will help contribute to the county’s goal of becoming carbon neutral.

‘I encourage all parents to support the pilot as far as possible by enabling children to walk or cycle to school instead of travelling by car. I’d also ask motorists to respect the road closures and allow extra time for their journeys.’

Harrison Primary School in Fareham, Cadland Primary School in Holbury and Alverstoke Infant School in Gosport will be taking part in the trial.

If the trial is successful, the scheme could be expanded to include more schools in the surrounding area.

But Gosport’s ward councillor for Alverstoke, Cllr Kevin Casey, believes a different school would have been better suited to the trail.

He said: ‘Alverstoke Infant School is in Ashburton Road, and that is the one they will close – but it’s a dead-end street and none of the parents really park there.

‘From what I’ve been told by residents, the adjacent roads are where the problems are because that’s where the parents park, and will presumably continue to.

‘There’s a fine line with this, because some of our schools are in main roads, like Bay House School. But I think either surrounding roads should have been included, or a different school should have been picked for the trial.’

Exemptions will be made for blue badge holders, emergency services, deliveries, businesses and carers.