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Hartcliffe Safer Streets

In a joint project with Playing Out and Knightstone Housing, Room 13 Hareclive children are calling for safer streets from speeding traffic so they can play out more.

Safer Streets Project

Room 13 Hareclive is an artists’ studio co-run by children in Hartcliffe, south Bristol. Working with Playing Out and Knightstone Housing locally, we commissioned them to find out whether children play out in the area and any barriers to this. When we got their answers, we commissioned them to do something about it. Carrying out research in Hareclive Primary School, making their own film, speaking out in a residents’ film, marching, hosting an event  – Room 13 is turning concerns and ideas into action and change and showing just what children can do if we give them the opportunity.

Child-led research: do children play out?

Room 13’s research shows that some children in Hareclive school never play out and nearly all children want to play out more. If children could go out, they would want to: meet up with friends, go to relatives’ houses, play football, go on bikes and scooters, explore, go to the park, have adventures…: “All the things YOU used to do when you were young!” Their report is a deep and rich collection of children’s views on all things playing out.

The main barrier? Speeding traffic, dangerous driving

This – and the fear of this from parents – were identified as the biggest things stopping children from having more freedom. This problem has also been identified by police and local residents as a major concern in the area. Here is Room 13’s amazing film about the need for safer streets for children – planned, written, acted in and produced by them:

The Sad Reality: Room 13's film about safer streets

Residents’ Activism

Room 13 children say in their film: “We’re all in this together. Let’s change things!” Some Hartcliffe residents have been working hard to try and slow traffic on their street. But it’s too big a problem for one street to solve…  Here are the views from residents:

Hartcliffe Safer Streets: residents' film

Children calling for action and change!

Both films were shown to a packed hall at a special event in St Andrew’s church, Hartcliffe, co-hosted by children.

Taking Action as Residents

We know that starting small leads to change, so here’s some suggestions for what we can do together for safer streets:

  • Share the films and this page with everyone you know!
  • Watch our speed when driving: a pedestrian is likely to be killed at  30mph but injured at 20mph – there are good reasons why ‘20 is plenty’
  • If you spot dangerous driving that might result in an accident or harm, get the number plate and call Police 101. The car owner will get a warning letter. A second warning letter can result in the car being removed.
  • Get together with neighbours or other parents to hold a playing out session at your school or on your street. It creates a temporary safe play space and sends the message out that streets are also for children. We can help!
  • Contact us with any other thoughts or ideas!

Read about what KateDinah and Jo have done on their streets, working with neighbours and other parents to change things for children so they can play out. Sign up to our blog to stay in touch with playing out around the country.

What can I do?

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