This report is the latest in a series looking at the personal mobility and travel patterns of children. The first was published in 1971, looking at children’s mobility in England. A follow-up study, published in 1990, expanded the survey to look at children in what was then West Germany. A third study looking at childhood mobility was published in 2010, providing a unique set of longitudinal data, stretching over four decades. The changes in children’s independent mobility have been striking. For example, in 1971 in England, 55 per cent of children under 10 were allowed to travel alone to places other than school that were within walking distance; by 2010, almost no children under 10 were allowed to do so.
This report expands the available data geographically, covering 16 countries: Australia, Brazil, Denmark, England, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Norway, Portugal, South Africa, Sri Lanka and Sweden. The children involved were aged from seven to 15.