Playful nature(s)

Ward Thompson, C., 2004, Playful nature(s), in: OPENspace, ‘Open space, people space’, OPENspace, Edinburgh

  • Author : Ward Thompson, C.
  • Year : 2004
  • Published in Book : Open space, people space
  • Abstract in English : This paper reflects on research undertaken by OPENspace Research Centre in relation to outdoor environments, urban and rural, and how people access and engage with them. It illustrates how playful engagement with natural environments in childhood is reflected in behaviour and attitudes in later life. Using examples from across Britain, it explores the common likes and dislikes of visitors and potential visitors to places such as local woodlands, parks and other publicly accessible green and natural places. Qualitative data illustrates the strong memories and multi-sensory experience that childhood visits to natural environments evoke. The changing attitudes of teenagers to going outdoors is compared with older people’s views, and the relationship of both groups in the context of public space use. The complex way that people respond to different environmental qualities, their attitudes and perceptions in relation to their behaviour, needs careful interpretation to inform effective planning.
  • Comments/Notes : KEYWORDS: natural environment, outdoors, childhood experience, teenagers, older people.