Car Free Day

European Car Free Day (or In Town Without My Car!) is an international festival of environmentally sensitive transport. Join in and make a difference!

Air pollution and problems with urban commuting are of great concern to people today. European surveys have shown that over six people in ten say that automobile traffic in the city is unbearable. Nine out of ten people believe that increasing public transport is a priority in combating air pollution and seven out of ten say they support a ban on car traffic in the centre of cities on certain days. However, at the same time, the number of cars and urban traffic is constantly increasing, eroding the quality of life of urban dwellers with the increase in noise, air pollution, stress, etc.

Car Free Day on 22 September every year is part of an approach aimed at reclaiming cities and represents an important chance for dialogue. It focuses on raising the awareness of urban dwellers with respect to nuisances caused by the use of private cars in the city (air pollution, noise, etc.). It also stresses the rights of pedestrians and cyclists, the need for more and better public transport, and helps people rediscover their local architectural heritage. As a motoring organisation, the ETA does not want to put cars on trial or to totally condemn the users’ desire for mobility. The idea is to reconsider urban transport with the prospect of sharing streets more efficiently.

Over 2,000 towns and cities around the world take part in Car Free Day. In Britain they include: Brighton, Bristol, Chichester, Edinburgh, Inverness, Hampshire, Kidderminster, London, Camden, Richmond, Westminster, Luton, Manchester Trafford, Harrogate, Oxford, Stoke-on-Trent, Wigan, Woking and York.

What is a typical car free day event?

The Old Town area of Clapham is to be closed to motor traffic, turfed with real grass; car and lorries will be replaced by a range of stalls, workshops and live music. People living in Jersey are being encouraged to ditch the car and use the extra bus services that will run throughout the day.

In Oxford this year event is called “Travel Smarter, Live Better and will highlight the positive effects of car free travel such as safe streets for pedestrians and cyclists, clean air and keeping fit. Oxford City Council and Oxfordshire County Council are encouraging their staff to travel to work by foot, bike or public transport. Schools in the city are also being encouraged to take part in Car Free Day.

Any questions? Please contact us.

What is the ETA?

The ETA provides motorists and cyclists with carbon-neutral breakdown cover and insurance products. As well as encouraging responsible driving to reduce carbon, the ETA campaigns for sustainable transport.