UK walking charity Living Streets has launched its new five-year active travel strategy.
‘Walk With Us” - sets out the charity’s goals to 2025, to achieve its vision of a nation where walking is the natural choice for local, everyday journeys.
Living Streets said millions of people have rediscovered walking during the recent lockdown and local governments across the UK have prioritised active travel.
However, the charity said the pandemic has also revealed that “too many streets are not fit for purpose”.
Over the next five years, Living Streets will be campaigning to make sure walking is at the top of the travel hierarchy for shorter journeys, to develop design standards for walking and to strive for equality and inclusion in every neighbourhood and city in the UK.
Dame Jane Roberts, chair of Living Streets said: “We have a choice, now, between a cleaner future for people, places and our planet, or continuing with activities which damage our health and environment.
“Transforming the way we move around our towns and cities, will play a significant role in reducing carbon emissions, improving air quality and achieving better physical and mental health.
“Our new strategy will put us firmly on the path to achieve these ambitions, setting out our goals for walking and ensuring we thrive as a well-governed, sustainable and effective organisation.”
Mary Creagh, chief executive, Living Streets said that while millions of people rediscovered the simple act of walking during the lockdown, they had to struggle with narrow, uneven pavements, pavement parking and crossings that prioritise cars rather than people.
She said: “Placing walking at the heart of government policy will ensure we build back better and avoid a car-led recovery.
“It will allow us to tackle the twin epidemics of obesity and loneliness, and create a cleaner future for pedestrians from all walks of life.”