In the historic and charming city of York ideas collided and innovation sparked as the annual Modeshift Conference took place on 23 and 24 November 2023.
Modeshift, a non-profit organisation, is actively promoting active and sustainable travel across businesses, education, and communities. With over 800 professionals from public, private, and third sectors, Modeshift is a key player in sustainable travel. They collaborate with experts to provide support, share best practice, and envision a future where communities naturally opt for healthy and sustainable travel. Picture a world where active travel is the norm, creating environments that effortlessly encourage eco-friendly choices. Modeshift isn't just an organisation; it's actively shaping a greener and more sustainable way to navigate our world.
Although my journey into sustainable transport kicked off in 2008, it was at the 2010 Modeshift conference in Glasgow that I found a turning point. Back then, while working for a local authority in Scotland, I gathered ideas and forged connections that shaped my school travel programme, and it was during this very event that I crossed paths with the wonderful people at Brightwayz (formerly Brightkidz). Brightwayz Gains ‘Excellent’ Gold STARS Accreditation and Launches New Website – Modeshift – Sustainable Travel
Now, 13 years later, having transitioned into a consultant role, I'm still advocating passionately for active travel. Who could have known the strong and enduring relationship that would blossom with Brightwayz. I was thrilled to become part of the Brightwayz team earlier this year and join them at the 2023 Modeshift conference. Looking back to Glasgow, it serves as a powerful reminder of the impact conferences can have and the exciting connections they can spark for those committed to active travel.
Adding a playful touch to this year’s conference, speakers delved into the age-old 'scon’ or ‘scone' pronunciation, creating a lively debate. I couldn't help but chuckle, thinking, "Oops, I better steer clear of adding the place, Scone (pronounced scoon) into the equation!" Scone Palace, 4 miles from me, once housed the Stone of Destiny. Following its journey to Westminster Abbey, the stone became a powerful symbol of unity for the entire UK.
Reflecting on the 2010 Modeshift conference in Scotland, it's like fate dealt its hand. Bonding with Brightwayz and diving into a vibrant community—was it my destiny?... and what exciting journey awaits to a greener and healthier future……
Donna Cromb (Brightwayz Project Support)
Photo credit: Brightwayz