USING cycling as a regular mode of transport is being encouraged among young people - with the help of a huge, regionwide cycling baton relay.

The relay runs between 162 schools - in North Yorkshire, the East Riding and West Yorkshire - and the baton will travel 400 miles in total.

The Schools’ Yorkshire Tour began in Pickering on Tuesday morning with pupils from St Joseph’s School carrying the baton to the railway station, where it was taken by steam train to Whitby.

There, YH Military Trainees marched the baton through the town to Whitby Abbey before handing it to pupils from Eskdale School.

The relay visited several schools before the baton finished the day at East Whitby Academy.

Gazette & Herald:

Picture: The Whitby handover.

On Wednesday, the baton continued its journey with the help of Scarborough schools before being taken out of the county to Flamborough Primary School by local cycling group Breeze Ladies Cycle Club.

The baton then passes through East Riding, York, Doncaster, Rotherham, Sheffield, Barnsley, Wakefield, Kirklees, Bradford and Calderdale before finishing in Millennium Square, Leeds, with a celebration in the Civic Hall on Tuesday, July 3.

The Schools’ Yorkshire Tour has been developed in partnership with Sustrans. 

The aim is to encourage more young people to take up cycling as a mode of transport, and to increase the number of pupils cycling safely to school and promote an active lifestyle - while improving air quality and reducing congestion.

County Councillor Don Mackenzie, executive member for transport, said: “It is very exciting to be involved in the start of this large-scale regional event.

"As this year’s Tour de Yorkshire cycle race recently highlighted, the huge interest in cycling continues to grow, so this is an opportunity to show our young people how they can make cycling a safe, regular part of their everyday life.”