Some lovely words form the founder of Car-Free Day Norwich:
'I'm Matt, and I started the Car-Free Norwich campaign last September, so this event is a pretty brilliant first birthday present for us.
We are living through a climate crisis (as you might have heard). We are also living through an air pollution crisis, which kills 40k people prematurely every year in the UK alone, and where our nation has the worst childhood asthma rates in all of Europe. And we are living through a public health crisis, where 20 million UK citizens are classed as physically inactive. The dominance of private car ownership bears a direct responsibility for all of these, so we cannot begin to tackle them without kicking cars out of our cities. Cars have stolen our right to breathe clean air and they've stolen our children's right to play freely and independently in their neighbourhoods.
There is no reason why Norwich cannot be the most walkable and cyclable city in the UK, with a state-of-the-art public transport system to be proud of. And there's no reason why Norwich can't have the cleanest air of any UK city. We just need to start designing our city around people, not cars, making cars feel like the visitors in a public space and not owners of the public space.
In this spirit we've launched a petition to get NCC to permanently close this road as well as Gaol Hill and Exchange Street, to general traffic. Please find the petition on our Facebook or Twitter pages, or sign it here on our tablet. And go to our website, carfreenorwich.co.uk, to find out more about our mission.
Please, enjoy this wonderful day, and enjoy this beautiful space that XR have created for us - I cannot thank them enough so can we please have a massive cheer for all of their amazing efforts. And let's continue the fight together for a Car Free Norwich!'
Thanks to everyone for all their hard work and passion in organising today's street party!
More photos of the event can be found in the gallery.
Extinction Rebellion Norwich were joined by XR North Norfolk for a Clean Air Die In at the centre of Anglia Square. The shoppers were very curious and we handed out a LOT of leaflets advertising Car Free Day on September 22nd. Activists began the event by walking around with breathing masks and inhalers, before 'dying' under the canopy as the Declaration of Rebellion was read loudly. There was also a guest speaker talking about the proposed redevelopment. The Anglia Square security team were super friendly and helpful - even helping us hang our banner on the balcony! Attended by local TV and print press, we certainly got some attention. Rebels were so enthused that they proceeded from the square on foot into the city, where they died again on Haymarket. A great outreach event!
-Ames (XR Norwich member)
XR UEA is having their first meeting back after the summer break.
Find out more here.