Approval has now been given for closing South Street to Motor Vehicles on International Car Free Day

Everyone supporting the Chichester Car Free Campaign for a Car Free Event on International Car Free Day is very excited. Our District council has given approval to a temporary closure of South Street to motor vehicles. This will allow us to run a playing out event in the centre of the city between 12:30pm and 15:30pm on the Sunday 22nd Sept 2019.

The document granting approval for a temporary closure of South Street to motor vehicles can be viewed here.

Judging of the Car Free Day competition at the Pallant House Gallery

International Car Free Day is celebrated in places all around the world. It is a day when people discover what it is like to live without cars and motor vehicles filling their streets.

We asked, what would you and your friends do in the streets if there was no danger from traffic and you were allowed to do whatever you liked?

So many wonderful pieces work were sent in. We wished we had more prizes:

A gallery of submissions is shown below. Click on any image to open the gallery in full-screen mode.

Stagecoach Family Rover Bus Ticket Prize goes to Emma of Jessie Younghusband Primary School

Car Free Day Handstand by Emma

We are sending Emma two Mega-rider-gold one week rover bus tickets that could take her and another family member anywhere around the Southern Stagecoach region of England. A prize generously donated by our Local Stagecoach bus operators in Chichester.

Bognor Picturedrome cinema tickets go to Hannah of Jessie Younghusband Primary School

Street Disco by Hannah

We are sending Hanah a Bognor Picturedrome cinema Prize Voucher. A prize generously donated by the Bognor Picturedrome.

Westgate Centre Swimming vouchers will go to both Mia of Lavant Primary School and Adam of Jessie Younghusband Primary School

Mia of Lavant Primary School is receiving Everyone Active – Five Free Family Swims. A prize generously donated by the Westgate Swimming Centre.

Westgate Centre Swimming vouchers will go to Adam of Jessie Younghusband Primary School

Adam of Jessie Younghusband Primary School is receiving Everyone Active – Five Free Family Swims. A prize generously donated by the Westgate Swimming Centre.

Judging the Competition

Simon Martin of the Pallant House Gallery,  Alicia Denny of the Chichester Post and Mark Record from the Chichester Car Free Day Campaign, took a long time to choose wining entries from a universally strong body of excellent competition submissions.

Simon and Mark looking at all the excellent entries sent in

What do we hope to do with all the Wonderful Stories and Pictures?

  • Print some of them in the Chichester Post Newspaper
  • Publish on the website
  • Make some of them into banners and posters displayed on Car Free Day 22nd September 2019.

Chichester District Council is searching for popular event ideas!

The Chichester post is running a story about how Chichester District Council is searching for popular ideas for  events.

The Post  reports: “Chichester District Council is currently developing a new events strategy, which aims to provide a year-round programme of events to entertain, educate and inspire residents and visitors across the district. To help shape this work, the council will be asking residents and businesses to say what events they would like to see in the district by taking part in a short survey.”

To put your ideas forward you can follow this link

The deadline for responding is midnight on July 29.

Chichester Car Free Day Campaigners really like the idea of holding a Car Free Day in the city. Why not let the Chichester District Council know if you share our enthusiasm for the idea?

Help us raise funds at the Lions Swimathon Sat 18th May

The Lions Club of Chichester are running an event to help local organisations raise funds to do good things in the community. Would you like to join the Swimathon on 18th May to raise funds towards organising a Car Free Day in the city? Teams consist of 4-6 members and more than one team can be entered.
Westgate Swimming Pool

The Lions Club is registered as a charity which means donations can be gift aided  to the Lions who will then in turn let us have the money towards organising our Car Free Day event. It is extremely generous of them to support community organisations in this way.

To read more about joining the event follow this link to the Lions webpage on the event.

The lions entry form is available as a printable PDF available here.

Sarah Sharp has already put her name down as a member of our sponsored swim so we only need three extra names to have a team. If we get enough support we could run a couple of teams!

Since the event is coming up soon, if you want to participate it is probably best to email and copy in both,

Hope some of you are available to participate and have some fun into the bargain,

Mark Record (On behalf of the Playing Out on International Car Free Day)

Playing Out on International Car Free Day

Chichester Car Free Day supporters enjoyed a lively and productive meeting at the Park Tavern on the Monday the 29th April. We decided to refocus our efforts towards holding a family oriented mini festival on South St. to coincide with International Car Free Day on Sunday the 22nd of October. Sarah Sharp proposed we should apply for a “Playing Out Street Order”. These orders allow for temporary closure of streets so that Children can enjoy activities where traffic would normally prevent them from playing. The idea originated from two Bristol neighbours, Alice Ferguson and Amy Rose, who came up with the idea of short, resident-led road closures in 2009. Playing out orders are limited to a duration of three hours so the event is now planed to run from midday until 3pm. We are rebranding our campaign “Playing Out on International Car Free Day”.

Logo from-Playing Out CIC is a small, not for profit, national social change organisation founded by parents.
Logo from-Playing Out CIC is a small, not for profit, national social change organisation founded by parents.

Sarah Sharp has previously organised similar events but we are also particularly lucky to have Peter Wilson on our team who has a long career in promoting road safety. Peter has extensive experience in organising similar events in the Westminster borough of Central London and he brought so many ideas to the table we had trouble writing them all down. We are also glad to be joined by Sustrans representative Adam Bell who is able to run a mobile bike workshop on Car Free Day and has a wealth of contacts to help us promote sustainable transport.

Peter Wilson helped organise and stage this event at Marble Arch.
Peter Wilson helped organise and stage this event at Marble Arch.

Supporting a Car Free Day will allow our local authorities to “raise awareness of the issues and ways in which residents and businesses can contribute to mitigate climate change”. This is an objective we passionately share with our County Council who unanimously agreed to support this as part of the landmark Climate Motion on the 5th April 2019. Also our District Council state that “We must act now to reduce traffic, encourage better lifestyle choices for our citizens and become a greener, better connected city where the needs of all generations are catered for” this commitment is given in the document “Chichester Tomorrow, A Vision for Chichester City Centre”. Indeed we feel that a Car Free Day event is the perfect opportunity to jointly combine these aims towards making Chichester a cleaner greener city that everyone will love to visit.

Photo from Winden and Whyke Lane playing out event that Sarah Sharp helped stage.
Photo from Winden and Whyke Lane playing out event that Sarah Sharp helped stage.

Our group has discussed ideas with most businesses along South Street. The concept has been generally well received with Kiwi Recruitment being particularly excited at the prospect of activities in the street. Business Initiative District (BID) have commented that the event might draw more customers towards South St businesses. The Chichester Music Academy is offering to provide live music and we have been in contact with Chichester Cathedral who have offered to provide lunch to our team of performance art dancers.

There is much still to be organised but we are looking forward to holding a fun family playing out event on International Car Free Day 2019.

Scotts show us the way towards a Clean Green City

A number of Edinburgh’s city centre streets have been closed to traffic under plans to reduce air pollution. The city has become the first in the UK to join the Open Streets movement. The initiative will take place on the first Sunday of every month as part of an 18-month trial. The BBC is running a story on this development which you can follow on this link.
Edinburgh's High Street was also part of the closure, which will take place on the first Sunday of every month as part of an 18-month trial
As The Mound, part of Hanover Street and the eastern end of George Street closed to traffic to mark Clean Air Day, transport and environment convener Lesley Macinnes said the aim was to demonstrate that Edinburgh could be a city that put people and public spaces first and did not need to be dominated by vehicles.Councillor Macinnes said: “As we have seen in other European capitals such as Oslo, Copenhagen and Amsterdam, active travel and car-free city centre streets improve the quality of the air that we breathe, the safety of the streets, and encourage people to use and enjoy the public realm more freely. Read more about it in the Edinburgh Evening News by following this link.
Cars will be banned from parts of the city centre as part of Clean Air Day.
Edinburgh’s cycle hire scheme will also be free all week to encourage people to ditch their vehicles.
Don’t forget #justeatcycles are FREE for the whole week, kicking off with #openstreets

If they can do this North of the border and on the continent then why can’t we have a Car Free Sunday each month in Chichester?

City council divided over Chichester Car Free Day

Chichester City Council discussed the Car Free Day proposal on Wednesday the 24th April 2019. Unfortunately the councillors were divided on the idea. Cllr Sarah Sharp (Green) firmly supported the proposal and highlighted community engagement and committent to the event.  Cllr Martin Bell (Con) said: “I think we need more research done on this but a car-free day could potentially bring you more business.” However Cllr Richard Plowman believed that Chichester business is inextricably reliant on motor car dependency and that “this is very impractical thing and in view of what is happening in Chichester, there should be nothing that gets in the way of supporting our economy and a Sunday economy in Chichester is important we know that”.

Car Free Campaigners in front of Cathedral with Ken's logo
Car Free Campaigners in front of Cathedral with Ken’s logo

Car Free Day supporters remain optimistic.  We believe that a few hours spent once a year favouring alternatives to motor car dependency might bring people into our City and invigorate Sunday life in the town centre.

To read more about this story follow this link in the Chichester Post.

University Dancers Ready to Perform on Car Free Day and the Cathedral Already has their Lunch Waiting

Dance students are now lined up to make a dramatic street performance on car free day and Sarah Sharp & Mark Record (from the Chichester Car Free Campaign) also had a productive meeting with the Cathedral’s Communar David Coulthard.
Chichester Cathedral
David was positive about our ideas and believed we would be able to hold the event without causing the Cathedral significant difficulties. We reassured him that during the event the intention was merely to restrict traffic along South St   rather than it to be prohibited . Provision will be made so that residents along Cathedral Close can leave and return from their residence with motor-vehicles but will need to keep to a 5mph limit within the event space for safety reasons. David very kindly offered that the Cathedral could provide the University dance team with lunch in the Cloisters restaurant. We are pleased that constructive community cooperation is already beginning to form around the event.

Climate Change Protest 5th April

9:45 am: March to Declare Your Support for calling A Climate Emergency!!!

Last time the council adjourned making a decision on the 15th Feb so we are holding another demonstration now they will be debating the issue.

Additional actions will include drawing chalk earths on the pavement and engaging with people. (Note that we aim to do this on the pedestrian streets – not confrontationally on the roads)

Climate Emergency Graphic
Support the Motion calling a Climate Emergency by witnessing the meeting from the public gallery.

Fore more details follow the this link to the Worthing Climate Action event on facebook

The County Council Meeting will be held at 10.30 Friday 5 April 2019 at County Hall, Chichester.

You may download a PDF format poster to advertise the event using the following link.

Everyone Goes Car Free in Bagota Columbia Each Sunday – and People Love it!

Emily Ralls has written in to the Chichester Car Free campaign about an article on car free Sundays and the positive impact they have on the community in Bagota. Emily hopes it might be fuel for the debate and inspire people towards adopting similar ideas in Chichester.

The article is by Alma Guillermoprieto. He writes frequently about Latin America for National Geographic. Spurred by environmental concerns, an example experiment in Bogota, Columbia, is spreading worldwide.

Click the link below to read the full article—
This city bans cars every Sunday-and people love it!

The article is accompanied by some striking black and white photography of the car free city.
People crossing a car free street