Pupils go back... as do the clocks

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Commuters are being reminded that traffic levels will rise next week when Oxfordshire’s schools return after half term.

Monday 30 October marks the start of the second half of the Autumn term which means more cars on the roads and passengers on public transport.

The busiest times to travel on the roads are the morning and evening peak time of 07.30 to 09.30 and 15.30 to 18.30 as people travel to work and schools, although you can beat the traffic to an extent if you use public transport, park and ride services or cycle.

Clocks go back

The clocks will go back an hour this weekend too which means darker evenings making checking headlights and indicators and giving your car a general check over is a good idea. Cyclists also need to ensure that they have working lights and reflectors while pedestrians also need to bear the change in conditions in mind while out and about.

County Councillor Yvonne Constance, Cabinet member for transport, said: “The start of the new school term is often a surprise for people whether they have got used to the roads being quieter or are resuming their commuting routine.

“Sometimes setting off a little earlier or even after the peak times can make for a quicker journey, but so can looking at how you travel and perhaps changing modes.

“Whatever you decide there’s a few things you can do to keep up to date with what’s happening on the roads. The BBC broadcast travel updates from the county council’s traffic control centre each day on Radio Oxford and you can also follow them on Twitter @bbcoxtravel.

“Safety is also really important so I would advise anyone who will be out and about on the roads to treat the clocks going back as a prompt to be safe and be seen.”

Best ways to get to new shopping centre

There is currently added interest in Oxford generated by the opening of the new Westgate centre and the best way to travel into the city centre to enjoy your day is to use the park and rides or public transport wherever possible.

New variable message signs have been installed on the outskirts of Oxfordshire to update people on space availability on the park and ride sites nearby and to direct them there. There are also temporary signs within the ring road which give directions, for those who have chosen not to use the park and rides, to city centre and Westgate.

There’s more information on travelling to the Westgate at: https://westgateoxford.co.uk/your-visit/getting-here