Petition Require public referendums on 15-minute town and city policies

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Require public referendums on 15-minute town and city policies - Petitions

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From birth to age 11, I lived in what was probably a 10 minute city. We could buy almost anything we needed locally.

Then the planners came along and took more than half of the local shops, etc., away. So for most of our shopping we could walk up the next major road, where you could still buy almost everything, but you had to go a bit further. A 15 minute city. Trips into town were a regular Saturday event. You could get things from the town markets that might be a bit harder to find at your local greengrocer or fishmonger. You had a bit more choice if you went into town, and some of the more luxurious items were more easily available, if you had the cash or could get HP. And there was the local coffee shop everybody loved. There’s one in every town. In our case it was Brucciani’s, who did ice cream sodas. My favourite was the lime one. Big treat for a kid. Gone now. Very occasionally, Dad might get us all into the car and pop over to somewhere else like Loughborough to see what was there. Whatever we did, the town was always busy.

When I got married, we first lived on a street near a major road with shops lining both sides, and once again we were within a 10 minute walk of almost everything we needed. Along came the developers and built a huge shopping centre two miles away, that had all the big names. And the smaller shops in my area started to struggle. The Post Office was shut down: that was a near-fatal blow, because it stopped the pensioners from getting their pension money and then popping into the shops next door and nearby. They had to go elsewhere - and the nearest Post Office was almost a mile away. No local shops there - the developers had got rid of them. So, either go into town (2 miles) or the new out of town shopping centre - also 2 miles away, in the opposite direction. And the area we loved became a fast food, student-centred shopping area, because they were half the customer base, and the only growing one. As a result, pensioners in particular became more isolated, and the regular moan about the fact that nobody cares about people, or the local community increased - because people weren’t spending their time there. A shopping trip with Mum to our local shops was littered with bumping into friends and chatting, easily two or three times a trip. How often do you see that in a supermarket or big shopping centre these days? It happened to us one day last week, for the first time in years. The big shopping centres (malls, American style) basically finished off most of the local shops, and then found themselves going the same way as out of town centres took on a life of their own. And now, of course, the internet is taking over. There’s so little human contact that we’ve become a nation of rugged individualists. There really is almost no such thing as society.

Our local health centre had almost every service you could imagine based there. Chiropodists, dentists, health visitors, a specialist health visitor, OT and Physio. Now for most of those services you have to go elsewhere. And the massive PFI-built monstrosity that was going to be available to increase services is now less than half full. We even have fewer GPs. Things we could go to the GP for are now hospital based.

I miss 15 minute cities. Better for the environment, jobs, communities. It’s about the only thing politicians might be right about.

Here’s the link to Agenda 2030. No mention of 15 minute cities, digital ID, vaccine tracking, or anything else.