‘I find looking for parking takes longer than just cycling or walking to the same place!’
My daughter started school last year, it is 3/4 of a mile from home so cycling is actually much easier and faster than walking. We cycle most days. It’s surprising how far you can get in 15 mins on bike even at a relatively easy pace. Walking the same distances can take up to 40 mins. It means I get home quickly or can ride directly to the train station to get into central London for work.
We’re lucky to live in a borough with so many great parks, we can easily reach Enfield Town, Grovelands and Oakwood Park. So as a family we often cycle at the weekend. I also use my bike to run errands throughout the week. Even my accountant is local, which means I can walk or cycle there.
I find looking for parking can often take longer than just cycling or walking to the same place! Cycling is excellent as it gets you door to door, you can lock your bike nearby wherever you are going. It’s even better with Enfield putting in so many new bike stands.
I already see more people thinking about and trying out cycling. A few parents from my daughter’s school have bought bikes (two of them after borrowing one from the Enfield scheme to try). It’s crazy that the primary schools here are so oversubscribed with tiny catchments, yet the school run traffic is terrible. This helps people realise cycling is a realistic, healthy and pleasant alternative. Parents sometimes ask me how I ‘get my daughter to cycle to school’ and I tell them she loves it. I don’t have to ‘force’ her! She doesn’t even mind the rain. Some parents seem to have a problem with cycling not the kids. I realise people have to feel safe primarily and the new bike lanes will really help with that.
It would be great for Enfield to do more to promote cycling in schools, a ‘bike week’ competition throughout the whole borough would be good! The routes to schools aren’t covered by the mini-Holland scheme so I’d like to see more being done where there are lots of schools; like World’s End Lane for example where the road traffic is really bad (especially with Sainsburys right there).
Cycling and walking makes a difference, getting outside for some sunshine puts me in a better mood. I notice more things like new shops on foot or bike and can easily stop to try something new. It’s also great bumping into people I know in the community. I purposely sought out a local accountant as I liked the idea of being to reach them easily.