walking with pram

We want a nation where walking is the natural choice for everyday local journeys.

Our mission is to achieve a better walking environment and inspire people to walk more.

Progress starts here: one street, one school, one step at a time. Read our three year strategy to find out more about our vision, mission and values.


our 2020-25 strategy

Strategy 2020-25


For any media enquiries, please contact the Living Streets press team on 020 7456 9790 , or out of office hours, 07545 209865. Alternatively you can email commsteam@livingstreets.org.uk.

Contact Us


Calderdale pupils set on making the walk to school safer


Mayor launches new Bradford city centre walking map


Liverpool City Region Mayor encourages parents and pupils to get active on the school run


Scotland pupils celebrate Walk to School Week



For 90 years Living Streets has been a beacon for walking.

In the early days our campaigning led to the UK’s first zebra crossing and the introduction of speed limits.

Today we face new challenges, but our work is as important as ever.


Our history

Living Streets is 90
  1. 1929

    On 13 August, young journalist Tom Foley and political reformer Viscount Cecil hold the first meeting of the Pedestrians’ Association in Essex Hall in the Strand, London.

    Tom Foley and Viscount Cecil
  2. 1930

    The Road Traffic Act 1930 repealed the Locomotive Act of 1865, the Locomotives on Highways Act 1896 and the Motor Car Act 1903 and introduced many new regulations which controversially included the removal of all speed limits on UK roads for motor cars.

    Original 1930 highway code
  3. 1932

    ES Cope demonstrates his Tell Tale Lights system whereby drivers and other road users are alerted if a vehicle is exceeding the speed limit by way of illuminated lights.

  4. 1933

    Viscount Cecil brands the Road Traffic Act 1930 “a failure,” saying that the increase in the number of road deaths since its inception proves that abolishing speed limits was a mistake.

  5. 1934

    The Pedestrians’ Association consults on the development of the new Highway Code.

    The Road Traffic Act includes 30mph speed limit in built-up areas, a victory for the Pedestrians’ Association.

  6. 1935

    Within a year of his appointment as Minister for Transport, Leslie Hore-Belisha introduces the practice of marking crossing places with orange beacons on top of black and white striped poles. The beacons become known as Belisha beacons.

    belisha beacon crossing
  7. 1940

    During the second world war the Association successfully lobbies the government to allow pedestrians to carry small hand torches during the black-out in the wake of several traffic incidents caused by lack of street lighting.

    Bakelite pedestiran torch
  8. 1942

    The Beveridge Report is published. The Association submits a memorandum suggesting those affected by loss or distress as a result of "accidents on the roads" would be subject to compensation.

    Portrait of William Beveridge
  9. 1950

    In the April issue of its quarterly newsletter, The Pedestrian, the Association declares it to be ‘A Black Year’ with 176,799 people killed or injured in road traffic collisions, an increase of 23,382 on the previous year.

  10. 1951

    The Ministry of Transport reacts to complaints that crossings aren’t sufficiently visible and orders that thick white stripes are painted across the road. They soon become known as zebra crossings.

    archive picture of children and cyclists blocking a road in protest of road safety
  11. 1952

    A Daily Herald cartoon featured in the Association newsletter after Road Safety Week...

    Cartoon of a pedestrian being shouted at by a motorist saying "well, what do you expect madam, you've had your road safety week"
  12. 1956: 30MPH Speed Limit

    The 30mph speed limit for built-up areas becomes permanent under a new Road Traffic Act. Prior to this, the limit had been subject to review and renewal by Parliament each year.
  13. 1958

    The Pedestrians’ Association adopts the poster campaign 'Speed Kills', and calls for an urgent review of zebra crossings on London roads with newly-increased speed limits, recommending the implementation of 'push button' signalised crossings.

    The Association also highlights the dangers of parking outside schools for the first time.

    Viscount Cecil dies, aged 94.

  14. 1961

    The Association moves to new premises at 4 Cannon Street, London.
  15. 1963

    Tom Foley is awarded an OBE.
  16. 1966

    The Winter 1966 edition of The Pedestrian, the forerunner of today's Street Life...
    The Pedestrian - Pedestrian association journal
  17. 1967

    Blood alcohol testing for drivers introduced. The legal limit - 80mg/100ml blood - stands to this day.
    man being breathalyzed
  18. 1973

    The Association urges members of the public to become a lollipop men or women, with four out of ten pedestrian incidents involving children aged under 15 years.
  19. 1974

    The Association gives evidence to the Committee on Drinking and Driving.
  20. 1979

    Tom Foley OBE dies.
  21. 1985

    The Pedestrians’ Association holds the first annual Foley Lecture in memory of founder Tom Foley.

    Michael Foot MP becomes the Association's Vice President.

    Portrait of Michael Foot and RonLemin arm in arm
  22. 1985


    The Association conducts a survey on pavement parking and found that the vast majority of people knew that it was illegal but that 44% admitted to doing it anyway.

    Cars parked partially blocking the pavement
  23. 1987

    The Association launches its national Feet First campaign for pedestrian priority.
  24. 1988

    A poster by the National Federation of the Blind for a campaign that, like so many others, remains pertinent today...
    Curb pavement hogs - illustration of pavement littered with a car, bicycle, childs scooter and dog
  25. 1991

    The first 20mph speed limits for some residential areas are introduced. 
    Road safety protesters with 20 mph signs
  26. 1992

    The Pedestrians’ Association supports a hard-fought protest against the controversial proposal to build the M11 link road in east London. 
  27. 1994

    Speed limiters for buses and coaches are set at 65mph and 56mph for heavy good vehicles.

    The Walk to School project is launched.

  28. 1995


    The very first Walk to School Week takes place with just five Hertfordshire primary schools joining in as part of its contribution to hosting the Environmental Transport Association's Green Transport Week.

  29. 1996

    Walk to School Week launched nationally by the Pedestrians’ Association and Travelwise, with the particular support of Dorset and Hertfordshire councils. Originally the Walk to School week was held during Child Safety Week.
  30. 1997

    Thanks to a generous legacy donation by long-term member - and friend of Tom Foley - Enid Jeeves, the Pedestrians' Association is able to appoint its first full-time professional staff and move to new headquarters in Vauxhall in south London.
  31. 2001

    The Association relaunches as Living Streets under the banner of ‘Revitalising Neighbourhoods, Reconnecting People’.
  32. 2003

    Living Streets launches the Walk once a Week - or WoW - scheme which rewards pupils for walking all year round. 
  33. 2006

    The Walk to School campaign reveals its new mascot... 
    Living Streets strider mascot
  34. 2009

    Living Streets launches Walk to Work Week to encourage workers and workplaces to get walking to and from the office and in their lunch breaks.
  35. 2011

    National Walking Month is launched. Every May Living Streets encourages people around the UK to give walking a go throughout the month. Walk to Work Week and Walk to School Week fall within National Walking Month.
  36. 2013

    Living Streets launches its crossings campaign to protect vulnerable pedestrians and give them more Time to Cross with more 'green man' time at signalised crossings. 
    Women in wheelchair with 'give me time to cross' placard
  37. 2014

    Policy report Putting Pupils First is published and Living Streets campaigns for an Active Travel Bill for England to make walking safer and easier.


We’re a dedicated group of professionals and volunteers, wanting to work with you to engineer walking back into our lives.


Our Board of Trustees bring expertise and strategic direction. Meeting four times a year they oversee finances and compliance with charitable legislation and regulation.



Dotted across the UK our team of friendly walking experts are ready to help get you or your community walking


Latest vacancies

Key publications

Our governance and accounts

We are a registered charity and our latest accounts and details on our annual general meeting are available.

governance and accounts

Our Safeguarding policy

We are a safeguarding organisation committed to ensuring children, young people and adults at risk are kept safe from harm.

Our safeguarding policy

Our work in action


Park and Stride in Rotherham

Diagram showing different bus stop and cycle track layouts, provided as decoration for page.


Inclusive Design at Bus Stops and Continuous Footways


Boosting active travel in Cardiff's schools


Cardiff - healthy streets in a growing city


Living Streets at COP26

Who we work with

We’re creating a walking nation. We’ve got the know-how to make it happen but we can’t do it alone. Together with our partners and funders we can make extraordinary things happen.


How we can work with you