Research & reports

Title: Children and Travel (research report)

Organisation: Independent Transport Commission
Date uploaded: 11th May 2016
Date published/launched: April 2016

This report highlights a ‘dramatic decline’ in the levels of walking among children, in part due to concerns about road safety.

It also uncovered ‘striking changes’ in children’s travel with the balance of power shifting from walking to travelling by car.

Authored by social research expert Kris Beuret OBE, the report also found that children are travelling much less independently than 40 years ago. It points to the National Travel Survey, which shows that 62% of trips by under 16s in 2010 were accompanied by an adult, compared to 41% in 1971.

The changing pattern is attributed to a number of factors including: concerns about road safety; children spending more time in front of computer screens; and longer journeys to school because parents are choosing schools out of catchment area.

The report says more should be done to understand the views and priorities of children. It describes children as ‘largely ‘invisible as passengers in their own right’, and calls for ‘better transport design for children’, including enhanced WC facilities and family carriages on trains.

It also calls for better child travel data and evidence-based road safety programmes.

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