A conference in
Organised by Play
Traffic issues, it seems, are a huge concern for UK children and a significant contributor to the decline in the percentage of British kids who play on the streets and pavements outside their home – 75% in 1973 to just 15% in 2005.
To reverse the trend, according to Sustrans, there needs to be a concerted effort to improve the lot of children in
“Areas called Home Zones see the streets re-designed, removing kerbs and signs to give priority to people. Traffic calming schemes have also proved effective, research into schemes across
Wayne Hemingway, who designed and lives at the Staithes South bank housing development in
Adrian Voce, director of Play England echoed these concerns: "The modern world is making many streets and neighbourhoods into no-go zones for children's play, with active travel and even public transport widely inaccessible for many young people," he said.
"We're calling on Government, local authorities and adults collectively to ensure that the public realm offers children places to play near their homes and, as they get older, more opportunities for their independent mobility. If we want children to enjoy their childhoods, develop healthy lifestyles and to grow up respecting their communities and caring for their environment, we need to give them a bigger stake in both."
Do you share these views? Can you see a link between the lack of traditional children's 'play' including bike-riding and the development of a Britain in which adults are often fearful of groups of young people? Would you like to see your local urban environment redesigned to move cyclists and pedestrians further up the street-using hierarchy? Log in below and have your say.