If you needed more evidence of the predominance of an urban mentality in yet another important organisation here it is. I’ve no beef with encouraging more people to exercise more however it seems a big leap to suggest the solution is a blanket approach to discriminating against the private motor car – particularly where as we know it’s a lifeline to many people in rural settings. This story tells us:

New road projects should prioritise cyclists, pedestrians and public transport over cars to encourage more physical activity across the UK, the health watchdog has said.

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (Nice) is urging planners and developers to build “safe, convenient, inclusive” transport infrastructure, which will help people move away from cars to healthier modes of transport. 

In a set of new draft guidelines issued to councils and planners, Nice said the aim is “to get people to be more active in their day-to-day lives by encouraging safe, convenient, active travel that is accessible for everyone, including older people and people with limited mobility”.

The Department for Transport has said it supports Nice’s recommendations, and said its own guidance “is crystal clear that street design should explicitly consider pedestrians and cyclists first”.

In the UK physical inactivity is responsible for one in six deaths and is believed to cost the economy £7.4bn a year, including £900m to the NHS, roughly the same impact as smoking, Nice said.

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