School children take to the ballot box

Children from three local schools took part in their own election this week. They placed their votes not for the next resident of Downing Street but to choose names for the newest streets in their community. 

A new development of 130 new homes, and a proposed extra care facility, is being built by council-owned housing company Goram Homes and its house builder partner, Vistry. 

Hundreds of children voted for the names of five new streets that will form part of The Fosseway development, which will transform the old New Fosseway School site into a thriving new neighbourhood. 

The voting was an opportunity to learn about democracy and the importance of placing your vote. 

It also gave the students a lesson in Roman history, and the origins of the very first Fosseway Road. The Fosse Way was a major Roman road that traversed Britain from southwest to northeast, running from the mouth of the River Axe in Devon to Lincoln. Historians believe it was laid in AD47.

Lucas, St Bernadette's

The shortlist of names for the children to vote for were inspired by Roman Gods and Goddesses. The winning names, chosen by 700 children from St Bernadette’s RC Primary School, St Bernadette’s Secondary School, and Perry Court E-Act Academy, are: 

1. Luna Drive – Roman Goddess of the moon
2. Jupiter Drive – Roman God of the sky
3. Vesta Street – Roman Goddess of family, hearth and home
4. Neptune Street – Roman God of the sea
5. Apollo Avenue – Roman God of the sun, light and creativity.

All the children had different reasons for their choice. Lucas, aged 6, from St Bernadette’s RC Primary School said the choice was easy because he liked Jupiter as a Roman God, and it was his favourite planet. 

Barbara Lee, headteacher at St Bernadette’s RC Primary School, said: “The children really enjoyed making their votes count today, and learning about democracy in an important week for the country. One day they’ll walk down the new streets knowing they had a part to play in developing them, and that’s a powerful message.”

Christiana Makariou, development director of Goram Homes, added: “A huge thank you to all the children who placed their votes this week and helped us choose five fantastic new names for our new neighbourhood. We believe it’s really important for people young and old to help shape their community, and we hope this has inspired a new group of community change makers.”

Natasha Palmer, regional sales and marketing director of Vistry Bristol, commented: “We’re very grateful to the pupils for engaging with this project and voting for their favourite street names. Contributing to your community is so important and the five new street names will connect the children to the area for years and years to come – they’ve made history!

“What’s more, the children have highlighted the importance of getting involved and using your voice, as they’ve proved that every vote really does count.”