There are many reasons that I’ll be at POP this year but for me the most important are the children. I’m too young and single to have parental concerns but I’m acutely aware of the absence of children on the streets – it’s the great crime of our modern times and yet goes largely unnoticed. But there they should be: cycling to school, cycling to see friends, cycling to the cinema but these basic rights are denied through our dangerous road conditions. Instead our children are driven around by parents or simply marooned in housing estates and denied their own personal freedom, the results of which can be seen through poor quality of life and high levels of obesity.
I came across a video from the Dead Dog blog which showed parents trying to take their children out in the City of Edinburgh along a designated bike route. The video is worth a watch for the presence of children on the road is largely unseen and it accurately depicts the challenges faced by parents when attempting to-do so and why most do not even try.
It doesn’t need to be like that and, as ever, David Hembrow has captured a typical scene in the Netherlands showing how it can be done. This is what I want for the children.