Change in use of green and open space during lockdown

The MRC/CSO Social and Public Health Sciences Unit's Dr Jon Olsen and Professor Rich Mitchell (on behalf of the Social and Systems Recovery - Environment and Spaces Group hosted by Public Health Scotland) have published a report, "Change in use of green and open space following COVID-19 lockdown ‘stay at home’ phase and initial easing of lockdown"

Photo of park

The main findings were:

  • Cover of green spaces reportUse of green space was polarised during lockdown - some people did increase their frequency of use and time spent outside, but many made fewer or no visits.
  • The most marked reduction in time spent in green and open spaces was amongst older people.
  • Overwhelmingly, users reported that green and open space benefited their mental health during lockdown.
  • Socio-economic inequalities in use of green and open spaces existed before lockdown. Lockdown did not reduce these and may have made them worse.

Read the full report


First published: 20 October 2020

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