Laura Sharman 16 July 2019

Parents urged to find time to take kids to the park

Three-quarters of children would like to spend more time outdoors, according to a new survey published to coincide with Love Parks Week.

Keep Britain Tidy found the majority of people are not getting their recommended ‘daily dose’ of time in green space, with parents admitting they don’t have the time to take their children to the park.

The research found children visit outdoor spaces an average of three times a week, with 80% of parents saying they would like their child to spend more time outdoors.

The survey also found over a third (34%) of children have never learnt to ride a bike and almost half (49%) have never climbed a tree.

Allison Ogden-Newton, chief executive of Keep Britain Tidy, said: ‘Parks and green spaces are an essential part of childhood. It’s great to see that, despite recent concerns about digital distractions, only 19% of children prefer playing on devices to exploring the great outdoors.

‘I’m delighted that three quarters of our children actually want to spend more time outside, so I urge parents to help make that happen by frequenting their local green space. Love Parks Week is the perfect time to make a date with nature, take part in a host of activities, and explore your green space.’

In response, Cllr Gerald Vernon-Jackson, chair of the Local Government Association’s Culture, Tourism and Sport Board, said: ‘Councils are doing everything they can to keep their parks and green spaces open and available to their communities.

’But with councils in England facing an £8bnfunding gap by 2025, the money local government has to provide vital services, such as parks and open spaces, is running out fast.’

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