Children – key publications

Children’s rights and adults’ wrongs Children’s Geographies, Vol. 4 Issue 1, April 2006

Children, Transport and the Quality of Life (edited conference papers), Policy Studies Institute, 1993

One False Move: a Study of Children’s Independent Mobility (with John Adams and John Whitelegg), Policy Studies Institute, 1991

Is the car cheating your child? Journal of the Advisory Centre for Education, April 1975

Personal Mobility and Transport Policy (with Anne Whalley and Irwin Henderson), Policy Studies Institute, 1973

Surveys in schools in different parts of the country in 1971 and replicated (with John Adams and John Whitelegg) in 1990 recorded a serious infringement of children’s rights and erosion of their opportunities to develop physically, socially and emotionally. The conclusion was that public policy should aim to reverse this trend as it has so seriously diminished such a crucial aspect of their quality of life. Among the recommendations made has been the adoption of practices aimed at ensuring that a fulfilling, safe, child-friendly and healthy environment is accessible to children. This would have characteristics enabling them to get about on foot or cycle, on their own or with their friends ‑ as adults are able to ‑ and promote their social interaction and engagement within the local community. And as Tim Gill published in The Ecologist: “Research by Mayer Hillman and colleagues at the Policy Studies Institute suggests that, in a single generation, the ‘home habitat’ of a typical eight-year-old – the area in which children are able to travel on their own – has shrunk to one-ninth of its former size.”

Fair Play for All (with Anne Whalley), Policy Studies Institute, 1977

This study revealed the extent to which the personal mobility and accessibility to leisure opportunities of different groups in the population, and especially children, affects participation in sports and informal recreation. It recommended a radical shift of policy towards a strategy of local provision of facilities and the opening up of sports facilities to the community in schools after hours. It warned of the limited scope that providing safe routes to school offers and urged a more comprehensive approach to cover children’s leisure activity as well.