The childhood factor: Adult visits to green places and the significance of childhood experience

Catharine Ward Thompson, Peter Aspinall, Alicia Montarzino

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    172 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    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. © Sage Publications, Inc. 2008.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)111-143
    Number of pages33
    JournalEnvironment and Behavior
    Volume40
    Issue number1
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - Jan 2008

    Keywords

    • Access
    • Childhood
    • Green places
    • Green space
    • Woodlands

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