However now the lockdown is easing, people are returning to work, and traffic levels are rising.

On top of this the government has advised against using public transport, so there is a real danger that cars become the default mode of socially distanced travel.

For Portsmouth, as the most densely populated city in the UK, that would be a public health disaster. To give just one example: shopping in places with narrow pavements like London Road would be virtually impossible without stepping into the path of traffic.

It would also mean going back to a severe congestion, harmful levels of air pollution, and some of the most dangerous roads for cyclists outside of London.

We don’t have to do this. Instead we have a unique opportunity to create a city that is greener, healthier and more prosperous.

This is why we are calling for the council to immediately:

  1. Widen narrow pavements in busy streets so that people can keep two metres apart whilst walking, queuing for shops etc.
  2. Create a comprehensive city-wide network of roads that give priority to cyclists and pedestrians
  3. Create more commuter cycle routes to allow people who usually travel by public transport to get quickly and safely to work by bike.

These changes need to happen quickly, and as Croydon, Manchester, Brighton and other cities have shown they can be put in place using low cost ‘pop up’ measures such as footway extension, thermoplastic tape, bollards and planters.

We acknowledge the council are taking vital steps in this direction, and welcome the ‘quick wins’ that they have announced in the south of the city; however the key demand of our campaign is that these measures become a joined up city-wide network, so everyone in Portsmouth can walk, wheel and cycle safely.

We also recognise that the council is under pressure financially and in terms of staff capacity. This is why our core campaign team are happy to work with them to identify priority cycle and pedestrian routes throughout the city, and build support in the community for the changes that need to happen.

Together we can make our city safe for walkers and cyclists: but we need to act now and be bold.

Signed by

Pompey Street Space organisers

  • Portsmouth Friends of the Earth
  • Portsmouth Cycle Forum
  • Let Pompey Breathe
  • XR Portsmouth
  • Portsmouth GreenDrinks
  • Portsmouth Playing Out

Portsmouth citizens

  • Ali and Paul Lees, Owners, The Wave Maiden
  • Amanda Martin, Teacher & NEU President
  • Andrea Carey Fuller, Green Party Activist, Volunteer for Compassionately Portsmouth
  • Becky Fisher, Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust
  • Bike U Like
  • Rev Canon Bob White, Vicar of St Mary’s Portsea
  • Bramble Infant School & Nursery
  • Brian Morton, Hunter Gatherer
  • Carole Damper, The Roberts Centre
  • Dr Carol Ekinsmyth, Associate Head, School of Environment, Geography & Geosciences, University of Portsmouth
  • Dr Catherine Lake, GP, Portsmouth
  • Charlie Adie, Bicycle Recycling
  • Chat Over Chai
  • Councillor Chris Attwell, St Thomas Ward, Portsmouth Liberal Democrats
  • Christian Burgess, Portsmouth FC
  • Rt Rev Christopher Foster, Bishop of Portsmouth
  • Cileste Rogers, Be My Guest
  • Colin Claverie, Skore
  • Community Cycle Centre
  • Craig Storey, Professor of Geology, University of Portsmouth
  • Delphine Leveyne, Package Free Larder
  • Donald Houston, Professor of Economic Geography, University of Portsmouth
  • The Duke of Buckingham
  • Emanuel Gatt, Shared Service Architecture Ltd
  • Fratton Big Local
  • Gail Baird, Friends of Old Portsmouth
  • Councillor George Fielding, Central Southsea Ward, Spokesperson for Environment and Climate Change, Portsmouth Labour Party
  • Greenpeace Portsmouth
  • Habib Wolf, Star Mobile
  • Hayley Turner-McIntyre, Vice President Welfare & Community, University of Portsmouth Students Union (UPSU)
  • Ian McCullough, Coordinator, Portsmouth Green Party
  • Janice Burkinshaw, Milton Neighbourhood Forum
  • Jay Dunstan, UK Flyers
  • Jerry Brown & Leon Reis, East Southsea Neighbourhood Forum
  • Jim & Anna Harbridge, Herbies Health
  • Joanne Bushnell, Aspex
  • Dr Jonathan Lake, GP, Portsmouth
  • J T Smith, Professor of Environmental Science, University of Portsmouth
  • Kathryn Birch, The Phoenix
  • Katie Carew-Robinson, GoodGym Portsmouth
  • Kelly Ings, Yes Creative
  • Kelly Rainey, The Royal Albert
  • Kevin Dean, Southsea Lifestyle
  • Kevin Watkins, Southsea Cycles
  • Liz Twigg, Emeritus Professor of Geography, University of Portsmouth
  • Lorraine Drinkwater, Christian Aid (Portsmouth)
  • Dr Mark Hardiman, Senior Lecturer in Environmental Systems, University of Portsmouth
  • Martyn & Tara, Southsea Coffee
  • Matthew Howarth, Croxton’s Kitchen & Tap House
  • Naomi Gibbs, Portsmouth Costumiers
  • Neal Layton, Children's Author & Illustrator
  • Dr Nick Moore
  • Pauline Powell, Portsmouth & Southsea Tree Wardens
  • Pete Codling, Southsea Artist
  • Phil & Mel Davies, Pigeon Books
  • Portsmouth Coronavirus Support Group
  • Portsmouth Global Justice
  • Portsmouth Humanists
  • Portsmouth Oxfam Action Network
  • Portsmouth Ramblers
  • Pravin Isram, Canvas Coffee & Sunday Coffee Roasters
  • Rebecca Crow, Jack House Gallery
  • Rick Christie, Head Hairdressing
  • Rod Bailey, Milton Planning Forum
  • Rodney Watson, Managing Director, The Southsea Village
  • Roni Edwards, Pamodi Creatives
  • Dr Sabine Wulf, Reader in Environmental Change, University of Portsmouth
  • Sarah Cunnold, Cycling UK (Portsmouth)
  • Sarah Payne, Southsea Gallery
  • Stephen Morgan, MP for Portsmouth South, Councillor Charles Dickens Ward, Portsmouth Labour Party
  • Professor Steve Fletcher, Chair of the Portsmouth Climate Action Board
  • Stuart Ainsworth, The Merchant House
  • Sue James, PCAN
  • Dr Tara Woodyer, Senior Lecturer in Human Geography, University of Portsmouth
  • Timothy T Barrows, Professor of Environmental Change
  • Walking Friends Portsmouth
  • Wild Thyme Wholefoods
  • Zero Waste Portsmouth