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Living Streets Member News for May

Dear Members,
We hope you’re keeping well and that you’ve enjoyed this year’s National Walking Month.
It’s been a busy month in the world of active travel as more of us recognise the need to create safer spaces for walking and cycling during the UK lockdown. The UK Government has announced funding to make this possible and we’re asking our supporters to write to local councillors to suggest the local areas that need more space allocated – read more about that below.
Lots of you are still walking and our #WalkingFromHome blog continues with fresh contributions from Living Streets Trustees Susan MacFarlane and Christopher Martin – and lovely Rita Moore who’s enjoyed daily, socially distanced three-mile walks since the lockdown started.
Thank you for your continued support at this time.

National Walking Month

It’s been a National Walking Month like no other, but thousands of people have once again taken part in the month-long challenge to walk every day.
This year, we adapted our #Try20 tips to help you make the most of walking indoors and outdoors during the lockdown. Many of you went looking for rainbows (either real or the ones painted for NHS staff and key workers) on your 20-minute walk or walked to the local shop to buy essentials for neighbours who couldn’t leave the house.
And we hope you enjoyed our new National Walking Month podcast. There are now three episodes to listen to featuring guests like author of ‘In Praise of Walking’ Shane O’Mara and Active Travel Commissioners Dame Sarah Storey and Will Norman.

Making space for walking

More of us are walking and cycling, but we need more space, especially during lockdown.
Earlier this month, UK Transport Minister Grant Shapps announced a £250 million emergency active travel fund to create wider pavements, safer junctions and additional bike lanes in England.
In Scotland, the Government has allocated £10m to help local authorities and the Welsh Government has written to local authorities offering them support to make walking and cycling more accessible to people.
Since then, a number of cities, including Cardiff, Edinburgh, London and Sheffield have introduced measures to create better spaces for pedestrians and cyclists.
We’ve also started an online  action  for  people  to write to their local councils with suggestions for which streets in their area need  reallocation  of space.

Safer school streets

School’s out for now, but Living Streets has written to local authorities in England urging them to improve the walk to school when pupils return.
Our schools need to be safe for staff, pupils and families – and this includes the streets around them. We want councils to start ‘school streets’ schemes which remove motor traffic from outside school gates, alleviating congestion, making the walk to school safer and more attractive – and crucially freeing up space for families to physically distance.
Please use our online letter writing tool to contact your local councillors and ask them to make schools streets safer for everyone.

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