Sustainable Travel

Car Free Day

Image of Sign The Pledge for Car Free Day 2021

Car Free Day in Sutton - Wednesday 22 September, 2021

Car Free Day on 22 September is a great opportunity to leave the car at home and take a step towards a lower carbon lifestyle. Choosing an alternate form of transport such as walking, cycling or public transport helps improve air quality, tackle the climate emergency and boost biodiversity. And it's not only good for the environment. Walking briskly or cycling for as little as 10 minutes a day provides benefits to physical and mental health.

Whether you fancy cycling, walking, scooting, or taking public transport, we have lots of ideas, tips and suggestions to help you stay active and choose a healthy way to travel in Sutton.

Local Inspiration on Car Free Day

  • Dr Bike in Trinity Square: the Dr Bike team will be providing free bike checks and minor repairs all afternoon on 22 September. No need to book, just turn up with your bike. Our Facebook event page has all the details. 
  • Try Before You Bike: trial a new or nearly new bike for a monthly fee from £10 for kids and £20 for adults. Sign up with Peddle My Wheels who run the Try Before you Bike programme on behalf of Sutton Council. 
  • Explore a new park: Sutton and Wandle Ramblers have lots of routes for new and experienced walkers to try in Sutton and the surrounding boroughs.​​​

Pledge to Travel Better

Pledges are a great way to show your commitment to travelling differently on Car Free Day. Simply sign up on our pledge page and tweet us a pic of you on the day. Our Councillors and staff will be joining us, and we’ll be calculating how many miles we’ve saved across the borough by leaving our cars at home. 

On Your Bike

If you’d like to start cycling or improve your skills, check out our partners’ cycling workshops and events to get you moving:

  • Accessible cycling: Ecolocal are running inclusive cycling sessions that make cycling accessible to everybody, whatever their ability or disability. Held in a traffic-free environment, they have a wide range of accessible cycles including hand cycles, go-carts and wheelchair cycles. Sessions run every Wednesday, including Car Free Day. 
  • Find a cycle buddy: if you feel unsure about cycling, a cycling buddy through Get Sutton Cycling can build confidence and make those first trips less daunting. 
  • Other cycling groups: Sutton has lots of groups for cyclists of all ages and abilities, check out our Cycling Groups resources for more information.

Ideas for Schools

If you work at a school and would like to get the pupils involved, why not try one of the following:

  • Biker’s Breakfast: pupils who cycle to school get a special breakfast which could include low sugar juice, fruit and cereal, which we may be able to fund;
  • Themed assembly: we can support a Healthy Streets assembly to promote the Car Free Day aims of encouraging more walking and cycling and fewer car journeys. The Clean Air Day website also has some school resources that may be useful;
  • Park and Stride day: for those who need to drive but also want to take part in Car Free Day, asking parents to Park and Stride is a good option. An email to parents is an easy way to advise them of Car Free Day, and suggest that they park further away on 22nd and walk the remaining distance to school;
  • Walk to school for house points or equivalent: all students who walk to school on Car Free Day could receive house points or a similar reward. We have some Healthy Travel Cards we can send to you to print off, so students can chart how many times they walk to school, and we are currently working on making some prizes available like bike lights, bells and pedometers. 

You can upload these activities to your STARS (Sustainable Travel: Active, Responsible, Safe) profile as stories, which contribute towards accreditation. If you need any help with this or any other aspect of the STARS programme, please contact Caroline Grogan.

Sutton’s Carbon Neutral Goals

In October 2020, we published a revised Environment Strategy and Climate Emergency Response Plan. This sets out our ambition to be London’s most sustainable borough, including the commitment to become a zero carbon council and borough. Find out more about the actions we’re taking, and get in touch with us if you want to be a part of this..