We're backing the Living Streets Campaign calling for more children walking to school

07-05-2024

As part of our celebration of children and young people this May, alongside May being National Walking Month - we're backing the national Living Streets campaign to get 60% of children walking to school by 2029.

We believe that every child has the right to be active, feel safe and breathe clean air.

That’s why, in the run up to 2024 elections we are calling for a simple, achievable target: We want 60% of primary school children walking to school in England by 2029. We want decision makers at all levels – UK, regional, local – to commit to this target as a minimum.

When we design streets for children, we create places that work better for everyone. Increased walking rates will reduce road deaths and congestion, improve health and air quality, and boost our economy. 

Four Key Recommendations

Living Streets has four key recommendations will help reach the 60% walk to school target and help others to walk more, too. While this is a national target, local authorities and mayoral authorities have a crucial role to play in the mission to get more children walking.

  1. The government should increase the walk to school target to 60% and maintain the target for 365 stages walked per person per year, as outlined in Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy 2 (CWIS2). 
  2. The government should provide safe routes for children to walk to school, committing to a Vision Zero approach. Slower speeds, improved crossings and an end to pavement parking will make sreets safer for all. Investment in both infrastructure and behaviour change initiatives is required to make change happen. 
  3. National government should empower local authorities to make decisions that create safer, inclusive streets. They should ensure local authorities are properly resourced, have the right skills, and have the right powers to respond to local concerns such as speed, pavement parking and high traffic levels.
  4. The UK government should allocate 10% of domestic transport expenditure to active travel by the end of the next Parliament.

What you can do

Write to your local paper today, calling for your local decision makers to make the walk to school safer and easier for all.

You can find out more about the campaign on the Living Streets website.

The National Walking Month and Walk to School Week Media Pack is now available for download.