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Giving Responsibility Back to the People

The Conservatives are planning to publish a “green paper” on roads this year which will borrow heavily from so-called shared-space schemes in the Netherlands, where pedestrians, cyclists and cars are encouraged to mingle...

Owen Paterson, the Shadow Transport Minister, visited Drachten and other Dutch towns. He told The Times: “There are some great ideas here which I would like to see in Britain. It’s the opposite of the 1960s ethos of separating cars and pedestrians... Mr Paterson said that putting up more speed limit signs and painting more lines on the road had failed to make streets safer. “Instead of the State laying down the rules, we need to give responsibility back to road users..

I have written before about this "Shared Space" idea - apart from it seeing working in my local town I hope it is encouraged because the idea that "Instead of the State laying down the rules, we need to give responsibility back" might permeate the body politic in other areas as well....


While I don't necessarily agree with all the politics on some of the conservative blogs, I am very sympathetic to some of the underlying themes. Giving responsibility and ownership back to individuals makes a great deal of sense to me. There are so many things that are wrong with the world to a greater or smaller extent, but the actions of individuals is the one thing that will make a difference. This initiative makes a great deal of sense to me.

And when responsible individuals are mown down on the road (or pavement) by a carload of joy-riding chavs, can the reponsible public please be left alone to deal with the little b*ggers in their own way?

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