Enfield's car free vision streets ahead
Monday 24 October I Enfield Gazette
ENFIELD is about to become a trailblazer for a new wave of ’child-friendly’ streets where cars are banned in favour of children playing.
Over the last three years, ’Play Streets’ were rolled out in two thirds of London boroughs by the charity London Play, to get children playing outside, meeting their neighbours and getting fresh air.
Enfield has a particularly high concentration of these streets where neighbours regularly agree to temporarily close the road, with the council’s approval, to through traffic. Devonshire Road, Old Park Road, New River Crescent, Riverside Gardens, all in Palmers Green, The Mall in Southgate and Orpington Road in Winchmore Hill are all running play streets.
Paul Hocker is the development director of London Play - the charity behind the idea. He said: “Enfield has been chosen to pilot an exciting new initiative called Play Quarters, it will essentially build on the success of play streets to strengthen their links with one another and with the surrounding community.
Photo: Katrina Campbell
“Our aim is to return to children some of the independence that has been lost in recent years – walking with friends to school, the park, the shops, or a neighbouring play street, what used to be a normal everyday occurrence.”
A dedicated leader will be in place in the borough from early next year, funded by the Big Lottery.
The leader will launch an app that will map out local play streets, safe walking routes and supportive retailers; shops will have signs highlighting them as Play Quarter partners so showing children that the whole community “has their wellbeing in mind”.
Safe walking routes to the park will be developed on weekends with walk groups led by the dedicated leader.
’Play and childhood’ awareness sessions will be delivered for the public service workforce – street cleaners, traffic wardens, bus drivers, the local police and more to ensure the area is ‘child ready’.
See the full story at Enfield Today here