Town Council adopts Ramblers Charter for Walking Neighbourhoods

Town Councillors have voted unanimously to adopt the Ramblers Charter for Walking Neighbourhoods, becoming only the second town council across England and Wales to do so.

The Ramblers is campaigning to improve neighbourhoods across Great Britain, to create towns and cities designed to put people walking first and allow everyone easy access to quality green spaces within a short walk of their front door.

By adopting the Charter, Weymouth Town Council is setting out a clear ambition to make Weymouth a great town for pedestrians – a boost both for local residents and the many tourists who visit each year, who will be able to enjoy a safer and healthier walking environment.

Neighbourhoods that are green and inviting to walk in promote good physical and mental health and wellbeing. They help combat poor air quality and encourage people to get outside and be active.

The Charter for Walking Neighbourhoods sets out five clear steps councils can take to make their neighbourhoods better for walking:

1. Make neighbourhoods green

2. Create a network of green walking routes

3. Prioritise pedestrians

4. Promote walking

5. Reclaim places for communities

The Town Council’s Green and Clean Working Group will now begin producing a plan to implement the objectives of the Charter, working together with Dorset Council.

Cllr David Northam, Chair of the Services Committee, said:

I am very pleased that we have decided to adopt the Charter. This supports our strategy for Weymouth to be a centre for walking and cycling and is in line with our commitment to help to ensure that all citizens can travel to work and education, and access services in an environmentally friendly way.”

As a Town Council, we already recognise the health benefits of walking through the successful Weymouth Health Walks. We are looking forward to working with partners to show our commitment to green and pedestrian-friendly neighbourhoods.”

Gemma Cantelo, Head of Policy and Advocacy for the Ramblers, said:

We are thrilled to hear that Weymouth Town Council has voted to adopt the Ramblers’ Charter for Walking Neighbourhoods, showing their commitment to creating a town designed to prioritise people walking.”

Neighbourhoods that are green and walkable, with easy access to quality green spaces and safe, traffic-free walking routes will encourage more people in Weymouth to get outside, benefitting their physical and mental health as well as improving air quality and the sense of community.”

We look forward to seeing Weymouth Town Council put their plans into action and hope more councils across the UK will follow their lead.”

The full Charter can be found in the papers for the meeting of the Full Council on Wednesday 16th October, which can be viewed on Weymouth Town Council’s website here.

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