Category Archives: Activist

Interviews with walking activists

Fran Crowe talking walking

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Fran Crowe has been collecting 46,000 pieces of plastic that have been washed up on the beach near Thorpeness in Suffolk – she goes out for walks each day to collect the detritus of our modern world.

“My walking has been the inspiration for my last 12 years’ work as an artist – it’s amazing to think it all started just because of the plastic objects that I saw whilst walking on my local beach. I never would’ve guessed where a washed-up piece of plastic debris would lead!”

Andrew Stuck from the Museum of Walking joins her on a walk along the shingle beach as she goes prospecting. Recorded August 2010. 20’02” 9.4MB

Download notes of items mentioned in this episode: Fran_Crowe

What Fran has been doing since our interview

“Since her interview, Fran has exhibited widely both here and overseas, including as part of the acclaimed GYRE exhibition, which was commissioned by the Anchorage Museum in Alaska and toured in the USA 2014/15.

One of Fran’s walks on Orford Ness was featured on BBC Coast in 2015.

In 2014 Fran launched the Museum of Beyond, a provocative and tongue-in-cheek imagining of what people might think of our plastic waste still washing up on beaches in a future beyond oil:  “a sea of plastic seen through future eyes”… Described by visitors as “absolutely mind-blowing” and “extraordinary and moving”, the Museum uses humour to deliver a powerful message about the way we live now.

Recently Fran created a ‘roaming gallery’ in a lovingly restored vintage horsebox.
The gallery features The Museum of Beyond including many of the plastic items that Fran has found on her walks. For news of where the gallery will be popping up next and to browse the museum’s collections, see http://www.museumofbeyond.org. Fran welcomes additions to the museum – so if you find something interesting whilst walking on the beach and would like to add it to the museum, do get in touch!

Fran is particularly interested in how creativity can be used as a catalyst for change and how it can help people (of all ages) imagine how things could be different – and better…

For more than 10 years Fran has been campaigning about the impact of plastic in our seas so is delighted that BBC’s Blue Planet 2 has succeeded in making this front page news in recent months. She hopes real change will result from this and her work on plastics will become redundant.

Research is an important part of Fran’s work. In the last two years Fran has been studying: Social Sciences and, more recently, Evolutionary Biology. Keep an eye on her website to see what direction Fran’s work takes next!”

Photo credits: Fran Crowe

Ben Rossiter talking walking

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VitoriaWalkslogoBen Rossiter, Executive Officer of Victoria Walks, an Australian walking promotion body based in the state of Victoria, accompanies Andrew Stuck from Rethinking Cities on a walk from London’s Covent Garden across the Thames. 20′ 30″ 9.6MB

Download notes of items mentioned in this interview: Ben_Rossiter

Tony Armstrong talking walking

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Tony Armstrong of Living Streets, LSlogoBritain’s leading campaigners on behalf of the pedestrian talks about how they are lobbying the government for better streets. This interview was recorded in December 2008. 19’24” 9.1 MB

Download notes of items mentioned in this episode: Tony Armstrong

STOP PRESS: In July 2014, Tony Armstrong left Living Streets to become the CEO of Locality

Des de Moor talking walking

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An interview with Des de Moor on his walk to work at RamblerslogoThe Ramblers, where Des is Senior Everyday Walking officer. It was recorded early in the morning on a bright day in December 2008. 23’42” 11.1MB

Download notes of items mentioned in this episode: Des de Moor

Anne Devine talking walking

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Anne Devine, a Catskills based artist, part social activist, part expeditionary, talks about how she incorporates walking in her art practice.  Join her as she talks about some wild adventures from crossing her local streets to the shores of Cape Canaveral and to high altitudes in the Sierras. 19’02” 8.9MB

Download notes of items mentioned in this episode: Anne Devine

Anne made a 5 year walking forecast in August 2013

Photo credit: Charlie Spaeth

Jacky Kennedy talking walking

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Jacky Kennedy lives in Toronto, Canada, and was the Founding Director of Canada Walks at Green Communities Canada and has been a long time walking and cycling activist. Jacky became involved in the walk to school movement in 1996 as a parent concerned about the traffic safety at her son’s school, herself contributing as a driving working Mom! Over the next 18 years Jacky championed the Active & Safe Routes to School initiative in Toronto, helping the expansion across Canada through the development and implementation of a Canadian School Travel Planning model. Jacky was instrumental in bringing the prestigious Walk21 international conference series to Canada for the first time in 2007 to Toronto, leading to the creation of a series of Walkability Roadshows and the creation of Canada Walks in 2009. Prior to her retirement in December 2016, Jacky worked to ensure the sustainability of School Travel Planning in Canada and continues to provide expert guidance to this work.

Over the course of her 20 years advocating for walking and walkable communities in Canada, Jacky has observed a marked shift in attitudes and behaviours with many more people adopting active human-powered mobility for many of their shorter daily trips and municipalities across Canada developing pedestrian plans and prioritizing children’s mobility.  This will mean an increasing proportion of local government spend will be for improving pedestrian infrastructure.
Active-and-Safe-routes-to-schoolThe interview took place beside the Serpentine in Hyde Park, London in May 2008.27’32” 12.9 MB

Download notes of items mentioned in this episode: Jacky_Kennedy

In October 2013, Jacky made a 5 year walking forecast, you can listen to it here

What has Jacky done since our interview and what has happened in Canada

“Walkability roadshows conducted across Canada in 2009 and 2011;  in Alberta we held 5 community workshops and trained Alberta Health Services to deliver them, which they continue to do and presented on at Walk21 in Calgary in 2017.

Walk21 Vancouver 2011; Walk21 Calgary 2017 – Advisor to both.

Development of the WALK Friendly Communities designation program http://walkfriendly.ca. See the Showcase document for the communities awarded designation to date: http://canadawalks.ca/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/WFO-Showcase.pdf.

ASRTS:
In 2010-12 GCC had three years of funding from Canadian Partnership Against Cancer. To develop a Canadian School Travel Planning model and implement it in every province and territory, getting new programs off the ground and helping to strengthen existing ones. That work has continued through today with so many incredible successes: http://www.saferoutestoschool.ca/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/CLASP-2012-National-Results.pdf.

Today the ASRTS program in Ontario is moving to a very sustainable level with 3 years of funding to work with school districts to implement school travel planning. An example of how this came to be was work I directed with Heart & Stroke Foundation resulting in this report: http://www.saferoutestoschool.ca/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/Active-School-Travel-Provincial-Priorities-Report.pdf. Ontario government has now provided funding to GCC to greatly expand the STP model.

There’s lots of detail on how STP has evolved in Canada here: http://www.saferoutestoschool.ca/school-travel-planning/

I led GCC’s work with University of Toronto on several ASRTS and STP research initiatives, and one on cost-effectiveness of STP is covered in the book: Walking: Connecting Sustainable Transport with Health; Edited by Corinne Mulley, Klaus Gebel and Ding Ding; Emerald Publishing – Chapter 6 Walkng To and From School (me and George Mammen, PhD).”

Jacky retired at the end of 2016 but continues to provide advice and guidance on sustainable and active transportation.

Peter Tombrowski talking walking

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Interview with Peter Tombrowski video documentary maker, author and walking resident of Calgary in Canada, talks about his philosophy and way of life, that he describes as Urban Camping. 18′ 45″ 8.8MB

CarLessPeter and his wife Andrea are making a movie called “Car Less in Calgary” – you can watch the official trailer through their Facebook page by clicking here.

Download notes of items mentioned in this episode: Peter_Tombrowski

Peter Tombrowski has made a 5 year walking forecast – listen to it here.

Bernadette Kowey talking walking

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Interview with Canadian walking activist, Bernadette Kowey, Regional Director of the British Columbian Way to Go project. The interview was recorded while taking two walks beside the sea in Vancouver. 21’12” 9.9MB

Download notes of items mentioned in this episode: Bernadette Kowey