There comes a time in life when our reflexes and senses cannot cope with the demands of driving. For a while we can adapt by driving slower and very carefully but that only offers a small extension on our freedom; there will come a point when we’re no longer capable of driving safely.
Our current road environment has been predominantly designed for the private motor car and as a consequence other transport modes have suffered. When someone loses their licence to drive they are left in this environment that does not cater for their new needs and this loss of personal freedom impacts on the quality of their remaining years.
The good news is it need not be this way! The way in which we design our transport system can be changed to encompass all road users – a holistic approach through a continuum of mobility. The Bears Way is one such effort to a create a safe environment to enable anyone and everyone to use human scale transport.
Unfortunately in the UK we don’t have a safe environment for those not in cars or on the pavement, and so the full range of people who would benefit are not currently seen. To see just who and how people could use such a network, we need to look to countries that have invested in such an environment, most notably The Netherlands:
Friends of Bears Way want an environment in which our parents and grandparents have the freedom to take their bike or mobility scooter to the local shops, and of course visit their friends and family, without the worry that they’re lonely at home or driving when they shouldn’t.