Islington Council was accused of laziness after it failed to persuade any local schools to join a national cycling competition.
John Ackers, a committee member for Islington Cycling Action Group said: “Islington Council says a lot, but doesn’t do much about getting kids on bikes.
“They can have obese unhealthy kids but as long as they get through the exams, it’s okay for them.”
The Big Pedal inter-school cycling competition runs from 5 to 23 March and requires pupils, parents and staff from the registered schools to cycle to school each day to raise levels of children cycling.
A total 1,176 schools are taking part nationwide, but out of the 114 London schools, none are based in Islington.
However, a recent survey by Islington Council shows that while 4 per cent of children currently cycle to school, 33 per cent would like to cycle. “The Big Pedal scheme gets kids out there doing cycling, not just reading about it. It looks like the absolute perfect initiative for Islington schools to increase their levels of kids cycling to schools”, said Mr Ackers.
Yemi Hailemariam, who has a 12-year-old daughter at EGA, said her daughter would like to cycle if the school provided the opportunity. “Cycling would be a very good idea, and my daughter has a bike but the school needs to provide somewhere to put it. “She would love to cycle to school, and she has done the road safety cycling programme with Islington Council, so she’d be fine”, she said.
Fait Mazari, who has a daughter at Hugh Myddelton Primary School, also supports cycling.
“I think the competition is a good idea. At least the kids will do some exercise, and it’s good for their health,” she said.
Islington Council and a selection of the 54 primary and secondary schools in the borough were unavailable to comment about their choice not to participate in the competition.