PUPILS making the transition from primary to secondary school have been given a helping hand to plan their new journeys.

Year 6 students from schools across Darlington were taught how to travel safely and independently at an annual transition training programme hosted by the town’s sustainable transport team, Local Motion.

Junior travel rangers from a number of schools who attended the days were taught how to read maps, use the train and mend a puncture, as well as how to understand distractions and the potential dangers of using a mobile phone while travelling.

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The pupils were also taught about bus travel by Arriva staff, who then took the students on a bus journey around the town.

Councillor David Lyonette, Darlington Borough Council’s cabinet member for transport said: “These events are great for getting pupils thinking about their journey.

“This new stage in their life brings with it increased independence and new options which can be quite daunting.

“We want to help pupils understand their choices and ensure they feel confident about their move.

“We’re very grateful to Arriva for helping us give pupils the first-hand experience of using the bus and for contributing to a great day.”

Nick Knox, area managing director for Arriva North-East said: “We are really proud to be a part of the Transition Training Programme.

“It’s fabulous to work with Local Motion making sure that pupils understand how to use their local bus services; it’s a great opportunity for our drivers to talk to them and answer any questions that may have.”