A 20’s Plenty for Us Briefing June 2015
Children are recommended an hour of active play daily, ideally outdoors. With wide area 20mph limits they can more safely reach the best play locations. 20mph is child protection. It encourages parents to allow kids out so children can move, be fit, sporty, explore, have fun and see friends. Playing out encourages walking or cycling to school.
Most British children want to play out more than they are allowed. Parents fear traffic, yet seem less aware that sitting inside has serious long term developmental risks too – the ‘inactivity time bomb’. Children’s wellbeing improves if they can make their own way ‘free range’ to school, friends or other play opportunities. Constant chaperoning restricts friendships, is costly in adult time and fuel bills. Happy children are not ‘fenced in’ to backyard only play. Children need space to explore from their door and run about with others. Active play is fun and aids physical, educational and social progress. It’s key to future winners in sports and our Olympic and Tour de France legacy. Vitamin D from sunlight also aids healthy development.
It is the responsibility of adults to facilitate children’s active travel and play. Returning more of children’s human rights to free movement and accessibility will also save our nation in long term health and social care costs. Note that 25% of London’s children are obese by age 11.
Few roads are suitable for football or other games. Yet 20mph limits are a huge help to children to reach appropriate play places like parks, friend’s gardens, play areas, traffic free paths, or streets with restricted traffic like cul de sacs. 20mph liberates kids, and especially their mum’s time, to have more fun! It helps us grow fit children, good at sports, who can concentrate better, with confidence, initiative and a knowledge of their local streets plus a closer sense of a community with neighbours – kids able to walk and cycle.
Permission to play out doubled in South Edinburgh’s 20mph limit from 31% to 66%. Cycling to school tripled.
Play streets are temporarily closed to cars to prioritise play. Children need approach roads with 20mph limits to reach such play opportunities. Play England are working on a project funded by the Department of Health with Playing Out and London Play to reactivate a culture of street play.
Rod King MBE, founder of 20’s Plenty for Us said :-
“Us adults must remember that streets ‘belong’ to children just as much as adults. 20mph streets to help children get about on their own is a universal aspiration. It’s a key reason why we ask for the National Urban Speed limit to be 20mph.”
20’s Plenty call for 20mph limits so that children can play out and gain confidence in walking and cycling locally as a precursor to active, independent travel to school and in setting up exercise habits for life.
 For more information on Street Play visit http://www.playengland.org.uk/streetplay or contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Tom Baker’s assertion that the new 20mph speed limits contribute to our air pollution is a useful prompt to our council to get on with explaining to us all why they, like so many councils, are implementing lower speeds where we live, learn and shop. (Letters, April 2, 2015)
In reality tested evidence shows that lower speeds cause very little difference in journey time and can even reduce air pollution, depending on driving style, because traffic flows more smoothly rather than accelerating to 30+mph from one queue in order to stand at the next.
But the real saving in lower speeds is in making it feel safe enough for people to choose active travel options, walking or riding bikes rather than using their cars for short journeys and, which is the most polluting use of vehicles.
The children and adults who do so not only improve their health generally, they are also now known to be inhaling less pollution than those inside vehicles.
Readers can visit 20splentyforsheffield.org.uk for factual information regarding the benefits of lower speeds.
midst presentation from various Councils and bodies, 2 stood out in particular as having possible relevance for us in Sheffield:
Paul Butcher, Director of Public Health, Calderdale. (This and al presentations via Landor link below)
Paul has led on some fundamental changes in approach/structure re the implementation of 20 in his patch:
Moved focus of criteria for schemes from KSI nos to Health Impact and well being Outcomes
Emphasised Active Travel
Given strong Leadership on aims like ‘X area should be safe for 10 yr olds to walk/cycle to school’
And to do so he has clearly linked the value of lower speeds to:
Introduction of wide area 20mph limits to suit road function.
Increased Active Travel choices – walking and cycling.
Improvement in air quality.
Improvement in ‘Place’, social cohesion and local economy.
Increase in healthy lifestyle and health outcomes.
And made structural changes such as bringing Road safety into the PH Directorate to pool resources/join up approach.
2. Nicola Wass, CEO of SO-MO, a pvte org in Liverpool contracted by the Council to ‘market’ 20mph. http://www.so-mo.co.uk/
Her work/presentation is summarised brilliantly here: http://bit.ly/1xsTIHQ
This is the work behind Liverpools fantastic ‘20 effect’ campaign http://www.the20effect.com/
The beauty of this is that they have moved the emphasis from a top down, Authority led implementation/’imposition’ of 20 to one coming up from the Community.
I collared Nicola and asked what it would cost for their org to bring the knowledge and expertise they have gained in Liverpool to a.n.other Authority – she said an Authority could see significant benefits from an outlay of £50.000.
Presentations here: https://landorlinks.box.com/s/95tg0d7c9kz2yxw9yi28buz24dsyyn4e
From Rod King MBE
A couple of weeks ago I had a call from a BBC researcher about 20mph limits.
After a request to provide a “human interest” story, I put them in touch with Nicola Wass at SoMo to talk about how compliance was being boosted in Liverpool by working with children.
I am delighted that they took up the offer and a session on this will take place on the One show tomorrow :-
the film about Liverpool City Council’s The 20 Effect campaign will be shown and discussed tomorrow evening on The One Show!
The episode is due to air at 7pm on BBC 1 on Wednesday 8th April 2015, during the episode our recent work will be shown and discussed by comedian Jack Dee, broadcaster and columnist Caitlin Moran and Slade’s Neville ‘Noddy’ Holder.
Last week, a film crew from the BBC joined So-Mo, Merseyside Police, Blackmoor Park Junior School and The Bobbie Colleran Road Safety Campaign to record ‘Kids Court’. During this activity, drivers caught speeding on nearby 20mph roads were pulled over by Merseyside Police, drivers were then offered a Fixed Penalty Notice or the chance to sit down with local children to discuss the dangers and consequences of speeding.
I just wanted to make you aware of this broadcast so you can tune in tomorrow!
Thanks to John Callaghan at SoMo for letting us know.
Rod King MBE
20s plenty for Sheffield campaigners will be at the annual 20s plenty conference this week. We will endeavour to tweet updates during the event.
Link to our interview on Sheffield Live
And direct to Vimeo
Radio Sheffield bit done, thanks again for input.
Link to the Rony Robinson show here:
We are on at 22 mins in but quite brief in the event due to big storey abot the A&E crisis.
listen also to the woman I was talking to in the waiting area 35 mins in, interesting she picked up on the social benefits! – a worthwhile conversation..
Note that Sheffield Council were invited but had no one available. This was just the sort of opportunity they should have be making the most of so we will be writing to say so & offer our services if they are so short or busy.
See attached paper for notes
We have been asked to go on the Rony Robinson show on Radio Sheffield at 10.10 on Thursday 8th January to comment on the news that Sheffield Council are introducing 11 more 20 areas, and are aiming to have 1/3rd of the City covered by 2016.
We welcome the news that 11 new 20mph zones could be introduced across Sheffield soon.
The proposed list includes Gleadless Valley, Hillsborough, Woodhouse, Meadowhead. Stannington, Park Academy, Greystones, Firth Park, Wincobank and Hurlfield.
The new 20mph zones are in addition to the 14 areas brought in during the last two financial years.
All we require now is some commitment to enforcement.
We are delighted to announce that Sheffield now has its own local Living Streets group
There will be more news about a launch date for Living Streets Sheffield in the new year but in the meantime if you wish to be kept in touch with developments drop a line to