Two schools become the first in Britain to be shut because of air pollution

The Sunday Times is reporting that two schools in South Yorkshire are to become the first in Britain to be shut because of air pollution levels…

The report suggests the roads around the two schools located near Sheffield – Tinsley Nursery Infant School and Tinsley Junior School – are generating so much nitrogen dioxide (NO2) and other pollutants that the council has deemed the buildings a threat to children’s health.

The schools are within 50 yards of the M1 motorway and surrounded by busy trunk roads.

The schools are going to be closed and moved to a new site a safe distance from the roads.

The Sunday Times suggests that the decision could have significant implications for hundreds of other schools close to main roads in big cities.

Clive Betts, Labour MP for Sheffield Southeast, the constituency that includes the schools, is quoted:

“This problem is caused by increased volumes of diesel cars that produce so much NO2 it is damaging my constituents’ health. It is not just Tinsley — around Britain there are many schools near busy roads where children face dangerous pollutant levels.”…

More at: Schools shut under a cloud of diesel (subscription may be required)


We’ve covered several air pollution stories on the site before but never had schools closing because of it.

This is almost certainly a good move for the children involved but with our roads getting busier and the shortage of school places we are already facing surely adds even greater pressure on planners? 

Your thoughts and reactions on the potential implications?

The full report also mentions the AirSensa project, which we have also covered on the via this guest post


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Categories: Health, Local authorities and Policy.


  1. cyclist_london

    CamdenAirAction wouldn’t it be easier in some cases simply to limit through traffic nearer schools than uproot the entire building #madness

  2. CamdenAirAction

    cyclist_london DexterJohnstone Absolutely … but at least they are taking kids health seriously, alternative tantamount to manslaughter.

  3. CamdenAirAction

    cyclist_london DexterJohnstone We have a school here, NW5 where the measurement is 78 almost double the legal limit.

  4. CamdenAirAction

    DexterJohnstone SheffCouncil Fascinating … brief glance indicates they are far lower than many London readings.

Let us know what you think...