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Fears young girl on Barbie bike might damage residents' cars ...

A three-year-old girl has been banned from riding her Barbie bike in a quiet cul-de-sac by a Dagenham housing association because of fears the tearaway toddler might damage residents’ cars.

Tracy Osborne-Facey was showing her granddaughter Lilly how to ride with stabilisers when an officer from London and Quadrant (L&Q) housing association told her riding bikes was banned in the street.

Tracy told the Barking and Dagenham Post's Sara Odeen-Isbister that it was one of many “over-the-top” rules enforced in the street by L&Q. The association said it had instituted a “no balls or bikes” policy after complaints from residents who believed their homes and cars could be damaged by children playing outside.

Tracy, 43, said: “I could understand stopping ball games maybe, but they’ve basically banned children from playing outside. But it’s not just the children. We adults are not allowed to congregate or talk outside either. I got a letter once telling me off for chatting to a neighbour outside for about 20 minutes.

“Others have received letters too about all kinds of things which they apparently shouldn’t be doing.

“The officer who told me Lilly couldn’t ride her bike said I should expect a letter about it soon. It’s ridiculous.

“I realise people want to live somewhere peaceful, but the children that play here are all under 12 and not antisocial at all.”

A housing association spokesman said: “L&Q strives to create places where people want to live but unfortunately due to the concern of the local residents we had to enforce a ‘no bikes no ball games’ policy around the area.”

Our official grumpy Northerner, John has been riding bikes for over 30 years since discovering as an uncoordinated teen that a sport could be fun if it didn't require you to catch a ball or get in the way of a hulking prop forward.

Road touring was followed by mountain biking and a career racing in the mud that was as brief as it was unsuccessful.

Somewhere along the line came the discovery that he could string a few words together, followed by the even more remarkable discovery that people were mug enough to pay for this rather than expecting him to do an honest day's work. He's pretty certain he's worked for even more bike publications than Mat Brett.

The inevitable 30-something MAMIL transition saw him shift to skinny tyres and these days he lives in Cambridge where the lack of hills is more than made up for by the headwinds.

54 comments

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Some Fella [890 posts] 3 years ago
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I think the landscaping around these houses should give some clues as to what the priorities are.
Cars > people

What an utterly depressing place to live and an utterly depressing reflection on society.

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ir_bandito [58 posts] 3 years ago
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"no bikes" despite it being a public road and right of way?

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wildoo [40 posts] 3 years ago
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They should carry on and see what happens. Would love to see the judges face when presented in court with a 3 year year old cyclist accused of antisocial cycling!

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CotterPin [63 posts] 3 years ago
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What about someone who lives there and rides a bike to get about?

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Goldfever4 [225 posts] 3 years ago
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wildoo wrote:

They should carry on and see what happens. Would love to see the judges face when presented in court with a 3 year year old cyclist accused of antisocial cycling!

+1!

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nowasps [485 posts] 3 years ago
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Wow, what a hideous place. Why haven't those trees in the background been chopped down yet?

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Dog72 [106 posts] 3 years ago
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CotterPin wrote:

What about someone who lives there and rides a bike to get about?

The Residents will club them to death with rolled up copies of the Daily Mail

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james-o [235 posts] 3 years ago
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"L&Q strives to create places where people want to live"

start striving in a different direction.

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Some Fella [890 posts] 3 years ago
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This would never get near a judge i fear.
Housing Associations can evict if they see a breach of a tenancy agreement. This poor family are probably scared they would lose their home if they are seen to be 'troublemakers'.

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behemothprocycling [43 posts] 3 years ago
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How ridiculous.
'Health and safety' has made huge advances in cutting deaths and injuries in my industry (construction), but it is idiocy like this that makes so many people still regard it as a big joke.
Common sense isn't common, as my old dad used to say.

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northstar [1108 posts] 3 years ago
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It's a public highway so the child can ride regardless, no one has the power to ban someone from riding a bike.

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Jonathan Knight [18 posts] 3 years ago
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It might not be a public highway though it could be the land is owned by the housing acssciation

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thereverent [432 posts] 3 years ago
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Doesn't sound a great place to live.
If the rules really are that restrictive, it will be a souless place.

As it probably be a private road they could enforce their own rules, but are adults allowed to cycle there (or is it driving/walking only).

L&Q seem to be failing in their aim of " create places where people want to live"

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Phaedrus [14 posts] 3 years ago
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We used to live in a housing association here in northern Ireland and we moved because our kids were nearly afraid to go outside, every resident got that many stupid letters threatening eviction because of kids kicking a ball or playing on the communal green area, it was beyond pathetic.

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drk2aps [2 posts] 3 years ago
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I see the L&Q Facebook page is open for comments... Maybe the girl hadn't paid road tax...

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pedalpowerDC [342 posts] 3 years ago
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Life is too short to spend your time and energy worrying about a scuff on the paint of your cheap little car. If your car is that special, don't park it on the streets.

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OldRidgeback [2660 posts] 3 years ago
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It isn't that far from Barking & Dagenham BMX track. Young children are welcome there and they even have strider bike events. A strider bike is a much better idea than having stabilisers as well.

That housing association place looks very uninviting. So the association would rather have fat unhealthy kids? Sounds like a step back to Victorian times with children seen but not heard.

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freespirit1 [247 posts] 3 years ago
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The housing association people in this sound like total fuckwits with too much time on their hands.

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freespirit1 [247 posts] 3 years ago
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After the scuff on my car's paintwork cost the thick end of £600 to sort out it is not such a small deal, really.

BTW that was caused by someone leaning their bicyclcle against my car in Leith Hill car park. Wouldn't have minded but they could have used the bike racks!!!

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velophilia [39 posts] 3 years ago
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That's unfair to the Victorians. They were the ones making great strides in raising social standards and social conscience. It is this present culture and its over emphasis on the individual and claiming human rights that drive this culture. Property rights trump many personal rights.

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gforce [54 posts] 3 years ago
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That's just asking for a critical mass ride to visit that street!  36

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Belaroo [44 posts] 3 years ago
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Any self respecting housing association should strive to build a playpark/recreation space and a car park and get bloody cars off the road. I hate that cars get abandoned on the road. They should be in a carpark or a driveway not the public highway.
"you scratched my car" vs "you transformed my environment into a pollution ridden, death trap where shiny paintwork has more priority over childhood and wellbeing.
Time for some serious changes in this country. The car or rather the appalling lack of sensible infrastructure, legislation and common sense and has literally ruined childhood for this generation.
It's not just these jobs worth's, it's the whole system, and everyone who thinks that parking your car on the pavement is acceptable.

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Andrew_j_heard [10 posts] 3 years ago
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I think they need a strava segment there!

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kylemalco [39 posts] 3 years ago
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Hope her parents introduce her to archery and baseball

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Some Fella [890 posts] 3 years ago
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Does Dagenham have a Reclaim The Streets group i wonder?
Perhaps a small gathering of cyclists on Simmons Drive could be arranged?
Give the residents something else to wet the bed over.

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Ciaran Patrick [116 posts] 3 years ago
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Has anyone checked there website front page. Children playing happily with a strap line saying 'Free summer holiday activities for children and young people'.

Now that's confusing. Play at what, no ball games, no running and oh before I forget no cycling. Maybe blowing bubbles might be fun but might the pavement slippery.

Although I reckon these activities maybe taking place in wales so not to annoy the neighbours.

What an absolutely ridicilous thing not allowing kids to play or even talking to your neighbours. I would seriously steer clear of this unfriendly and idiotic housing association or better as Some fells suggested lets start a ride from there.

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chadders [87 posts] 3 years ago
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As a 3 year old she cant ride a bike but L&Q i'm sure will allow her to sweep the local chimneys!!

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paulmcmillan [97 posts] 3 years ago
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Instead, what about banning cars in the cul de sac over fears that they might damage 3 year olds who are riding their bikes?

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anewman [5 posts] 3 years ago
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After the scuff on my car's paintwork cost the thick end of £600 to sort out it is not such a small deal, really.

BTW that was caused by someone leaning their bicyclcle against my car in Leith Hill car park. Wouldn't have minded but they could have used the bike racks!!!

I've never had issues with cyclists. It's usually the clueless idiot neighbours with a car who smoke cannabis and think my car is a door stop for their car. Worse is as they're neighbours, going and asking for them to pay for the damage (I know for a fact they did it) will just lead to a long drawn out neighbourly dispute, which ends with no money to pay for the damage, probably more damage to my car, and other problems. Been there, done that, worn the t-shirt. Just have to accept you can't have nice things. Bet if I did something to their car of the same magnitude, they'd quickly be knocking on my door.

In any case they have some bad crash damage to their car now, which due to their idiocy I assume is of their own causing. Sadly I have nowhere else to park due to parking restrictions, and/or drunks in the area. Better a door ding than a kicked off mirror I suppose.

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anewman [5 posts] 3 years ago
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They should carry on and see what happens. Would love to see the judges face when presented in court with a 3 year year old cyclist accused of antisocial cycling!

Problem is this isn't a criminal issue. This is likely to be part of a tenancy contract which was signed. What is likely to happen is they would just evict any people they don't like. Thanks to Maggie, it is law that private landlords can get rid of any tenant they don't like, for any reason.

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