#benches4bottoms Reclaiming park benches for people who want to sit on them.

March 23, 2020
tooting bec common, benches4bottoms

The schools are closed, gyms are closed, the office is closed. In London, my local park, Tooting Common, is full. 7am Monday morning. The usual dog walkers and their dogs are squelching through the mud, a Dad’s working out with his young son on the football field grass, loads of couples of all ages running along the wooded paths…

I could write a whole blog post about keeping a distance of 2 metres away from each other but this post is about respect for people less fit than others. I am thinking of people who need to take a rest and sit on a park bench when they are out taking a walk. Or those people who want to sit down and catch the beauty of being in a wild place, listen to the birds singing in the trees, look at the trees bursting with life here in the heart of London. That’s why we have park benches.

A view across the lake on Sunday 22nd March, Tooting Bec Common. An oasis of calm in the heart of South London, a place to sit still and grab a few moments away from the panic and fear around us.

This campaign is a plea to those who are more able than others. Stop using the park benches as part of your exercise kit – keep your dirty trainers off the park benches.

I’ve been in touch with fitness instructors who hold classes on Tooting Common and asked them to post fun and creative ways of stretching and doing exercises such as step ups. In the next few days I will share their ideas, so please follow me on Twitter, Insta or FB, share the posts and add your own, use the hashtag #benches4bottoms on your social media platforms, let’s get the message across all of the UK: Let’s keep park benches clean enough to sit on!

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