Pedestrians

WOW is a pupil-led initiative run by Living Streets, the charity for everyday walking. Children self-report how they get to school every day using the interactive WOW Travel Tracker. If they travel sustainably (walk, cycle or scoot) once a week for a month, they get rewarded with a badge. On average, WOW schools see a 30 per cent reduction in car journeys taken to the school gate and a 23 per cent increase in walking rates.

'Social distancing' has drawn attention to how narrow many pavements are and what a small percentage of the space on our streets is devoted to walking - which is theoretically at the top of the transport mode hierarchy. London Living Streets has published an important discussion paper about how streets should be re-evaluated in the face of Covid. As the authors point out, the ideas reflected the situation in mid-April, and the situation will undoubtedly evolve. At national level Living Streets is suggesting that we contact councillors with suggestions for reallocating space for people on foot where social distancing is proving difficult.

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The national charity Living Streets celebrates National Walking Month every May. This year its Walking Ambassador is TV presenter Kate Humble. Watch her video.

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The London Living Streets group has been working with Transport for London to introduce a programme of crossing retimings that will make it easier and safer to cross the street - one crossing on the priority list is in Palmers Green. A new Living Streets group launches in Wood Green on 24th March.

Enfield Council's scheme for Enfield Town was one of the successful bids for Liveable Neighbourhood funding from the Mayor of London and Transport for London (TfL).

A photograph taken on 26th February shows pedestrians, including a mothers with a baby buggy, forced to walk in the road because the pavements outside KFC in Palmers Green were completely blocked by illegally parked cars.

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Three central London boroughs are currently consulting on changes to their road networks that are designed to shift the favour somewhat away from car drivers and towards the interests of pedestrians and cyclists.

There are many reasons to regret the fact that so many children these days are driven to school instead of walking or making their own way by public transport. Among the problems are lack of sufficient exercise, congestion and road danger caused by build-ups of cars near school gates, and exposure to toxic fumes, which recent research has found is actually more of a problem inside a car than outside.

Living Streets, the "UK Charity for Everyday Walking",  has published a Blueprint for Change, designed as a guide for city leaders to help them create Walking Cities:  "safe and inviting to people of all ages, where every child can walk safely to school, and communities have quality spaces to thrive. Walking cities mean better cities for everyone." Living Streets' Chief Executive, Joe Irvin, sets out the charity's rationale: Our streets deserve to be so much more than corridors for.......
The parent of a child at Oakthorpe Primary School is petitioning Enfield Council to improve pedestrian safety in the vinicity of the school, which is Tile Kiln Lane, near the junction with Chequers Way. The online petition, on change.org, reads as follows: Produce adequate road safety for Oakthorpe Primary School before a child is injured. My child has been attending Oakthorpe Primary School on Tile Kiln Lane since September 2015 and very early on I noticed that there was a major problem.......