On the face of it, Tufnell Park has relatively benign conditions for cycling, and yet we see very few children cycling to school or about the streets on bikes. Many children are discouraged because the roads look and feel unsafe and they, or especially their parents, fear they may be killed or injured by cars. The truth is that it often feels safer, easier or quicker to take children to school by car.
‘Tufnell Park Cycles to School’ is a proposal to create a signed, circular cycling and walking route connecting 6 local schools and 6 parks or playgrounds. The intention is that the route will become a focus for the allocation of resources until it becomes an exemplar of a safe route to school. We want to build the confidence of parents and their children that it is safe to cycle to school or to play.
The route could be implemented immediately at very little cost with some simple signage. But we would strive to identify resources and funding streams, examining every junction to make real improvements to the route both for cycling and for walking, scooting or pushing a pram.
The planned route is about 2 miles in length and makes use of quieter streets, parks and off-road paths. As well as a safe route to school, it could become a great resource for joggers and walkers so its use could transcend all age groups.
The cost/benefit advantages of spending on cycling are well established beyond any reasonable doubt although it can sometimes be difficult to argue at a local level because the costs and benefits exist in different organisations. Transition Town is about making the connections and searching for a sustainable future. We hope Transition Town supporters will engage with this project and visit our page at www.facebook.com/TufnellParkCyclesToSchool.