How many streets in Kidlington? Well, George knows ...

by Andrew Young

E ver wondered how many 'streets' there are in Kidlington? Probably not, but the national lockdown did lead one Kidlington kid to muse on this matter. The answer appears to be 161. And, ever wondered how many miles someone would have to cover to run every street and how long it would take? Well, 23-year old George Young, a car mechanic at Summertown Garage, decided to find out, the hard way!

March 2021
George Young, aged 23, chases down all the streets of Kidlington.

On Saturday, 20th March 2021, the first day of the meteorological Spring, George stepped out of his front door to start 'chasing pavements'. From Anderson Close in the West to Queens Avenue in the East, and the hyponymous avenue in the South, through to Station Approach in the North, 6 hours 39 minutes of running ensued. The distance covered was 42.15 miles, at an average speed of 9.29 mph. If you were out-and-about on Saturday 20th of March you may have seen someone running in the morning, jogging in the afternoon, or staggering in the early evening?

George covered Kidlington's 42.15 miles of streets in under 6-hours 40-minutes.

And why did George do this? His inspiration came from Rickey Gates, an American ultra-endurance athlete, who once ran every street in San Francisco. With the road map out of the national lockdown scheduled to relax some restrictions on the 29th of March, George decided to seize the moment before the streets became busier again.

The thought of running up and down, and in and out, of the village's labyrinth might have made George crazier than he already appears to be, so he focussed on things to think about. For example, the shortest road name? The runner up prize goes jointly to Ben Close, Lee Close, and Oak Drive; but the winner is Broadway. The most exotic name — maybe Azalea Avenue? The most arcane name — maybe Frieze Way? And the dullest name — readers might like to insert their own answer?

And now that the adventure is over, George said he felt 'miles better', and could turn his attention back to a plan he hatched before the global pandemic put everything on hold. George has set himself the goal of cycling 10,000 miles through all 50 states of the United States — now that will be 'tyring'!

Andrew Young is a resident of Kidlington village.

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