Graphic of people

Our Croydon Living Streets Group has seen first-hand the way some of their local streets have been transformed as part of the TfL Streetspace programme.

But with the opposition some schemes are experiencing, the group wants to know how we can collaborate effectively. Amy Foster from the group explains more. 

Amy Foster

“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.”

This was the powerful statement from Living Streets' Chair, Dame Jane Roberts, introducing our charity’s strategy for the next five years.

At Croydon Living Streets Group, we’ve been fortunate enough to see some of our streets transformed as part of the TfL Streetspace programme, with protected space for cycling appearing on several main roads and a number of residential roads blocked to through motor traffic and opened up to safer - and more pleasant - walking and cycling. 

We fully embrace Living Streets' core values of excellence, positivity, inspiration and collaboration and therefore fully support the changes as the start of an exciting journey towards more people-friendly streets.

All images: Crispin Hughes

However, we also recognise that many people are strongly against such changes and sadly the planters used to create Croydon’s LTNs (low traffic neighbourhoods) were victim to vandalisation in the way other communities are reporting across the country.

Collaboration, therefore, seems to be critical in trying to navigate these stormy waters in order to achieve the powerful long-term benefits of people-friendly streets.

The work of Professor Rachel Aldred and colleagues at the University of Westminster Active Travel Academy show these benefits to include reductions in motor vehicle ownership and that Streetspace schemes can generate new walking and  cycling journeys whilst simultaneously highlighting the deleterious effect allowing high motor traffic volumes on minor roads has on pedestrian safety.

Boy cycling

How then do we collaborate effectively for safer and healthier streets for all?


We at Croydon Living Streets asked that very question at our online seminar Change is Here event recording, which we hosted in collaboration with Professor Rachel Aldred and the Active Travel Academy on Tuesday 26 January. 

Chaired by London-wide Green Assembly Member Caroline Russell, the online seminar invited guests to come together, share and devise strategies for successful community collaboration.


Our panellists included:

  • Prof. Rachel Aldred, Director of the Active Travel Academy at the University of Westminster
  • Peter Walker, Guardian journalist and author of 'The Miracle Pill', which investigates the effects of physical inactivity and how to overcome it
  • Cllr Muhammad Ali, Cabinet Member for Sustainable Croydon Climate Commissioner
  • Isabelle Clement, Director of Wheels for Wellbeing and Lambeth Council Equality Commissioner
  • Samra Said, Trustee for the Cycle Sisters Muslim cycling group
  • Hana Sutch, co-founder of the Go Jauntly app.

Watch the event recording