This article explores the significance of childhood experience of woodlands
and other green or natural places in relation to adult patterns of use and attitudes
to such places. It draws on data collected in different parts of Britain.
Questionnaires were used to explore the frequency of adults’ visits to green
places, the frequency with which they reported visiting such places as
children, and their attitudes to different attributes of the places they visited.
The data show a strong relationship between frequent childhood visits and
being prepared to visit woodlands or green spaces alone as an adult. By contrast,
not visiting as a child was associated with a very low likelihood of later
adult visits. The data also suggest that the physical and the emotional benefits
of access to green space are strongly reflected in childhood experience.
The significance of these findings for today’s children, as they become
adults, is discussed.
- green places
- green space