In July we have Love Parks Week, National Meadows Day and National Parks Week – so it made sense for us to choose "The great outdoors" as our theme for this month. Let's hope the weather stays fine, so we can make the most of it (although the rain is great, too).
While many people will be jetting off abroad over the summer, many others will be enjoying what the UK has to offer. Every town and city has parks, where people can find peace and some time to be among the trees, the flowers and the many insects and other animals that call them home. Meadows, in cities or in the countryside, are a perfect place for wild flowers and all the wildlife they support. So why not get out and appreciate our wonderful parks and meadows this month.
Love Parks Week – 14th to 23rd July
The first parks were areas created for the aristocracy to hunt – areas that were cordoned off so no commoners could gain access. Urban parks became a necessity in the 19th century, after the Industrial Revolution had created busy, dirty cities and moved people out of the countryside. Although we have much cleaner cities now, parks are just as important as ever. Love Parks Week, an initiative of Keep Britain Tidy, runs from 14th to 23rd July. It aims to remind us of the importance of our parks, and to give us an opportunity to demonstrate how much we appreciate them.
Here's a video that should inspire you to get involved:
Find out more, on Keep Britain Tidy's Love Parks Week page.
National Meadows Day – 1st July
Meadows are vital to biodiversity, and they are a part of our national heritage. They are also wonderful places to sit and take some time out. This year's National Meadows Day, run by the Save Our Magnificent Meadows campaign group, falls on 1st July. Here in Worcester, we are celebrating with a Scarecrow-Making Family Fun Day, 10.00am - 1.00pm, Chapter Meadows, Worcester WR2 4AR.
For more information, follow this link.
Find out more about National Meadows Day on the official National Meadows Day page.
National Parks Week – 24th to 30th July
Britain has fifteen national parks (see below), and National Parks Week is a chance to celebrate them. There are events year-round in Britain's national parks, but more during National Parks Week, which this year runs from 24th to 30th July.
There are ten National Parks in England, three in Wales and two in Scotland:
- England - Broads, Dartmoor, Exmoor, Lake District, New Forest, Northumberland, North York Moors, Peak District, Yorkshire Dales, and South Downs.
- Wales - Brecon Beacons, Pembrokeshire Coast, and Snowdonia
- Scotland - Cairngorms and Loch Lomond & the Trossachs.
Interesting links ...
A few links if you want to find out more ...
• Worcester With Council's list of Parks and Open Spaces.
• The importance of meadows, from Save Our Magnificent Meadows.
• Plantlife, a British conservation charity also heavily involved in National Meadows Week.
• The health benefits of being the great outdoors, from the Daily Mail.
... and in case you missed it last month, here's that talk by a paediatrician who 'prescribes' time in nature for those in her care: