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Woodbury Castle, East Devon. Credit: the East Devon Pebblebed Heaths Conservation Trust.

Recent blog posts

A series of reflections and features on external projects


Recovery, environmental restoration and adjusting to change: Walking the South West Coast Path

Making the links between recovery (mental health and wellbeing) and environmental restoration on the South West Coast Path. Climate change and coastal erosion present the greatest challenges to the maintenance of the South West Coast Path going forwards; and recovery is even more important in the context of the Covid-19 pandemic. I decide to goContinue reading “Recovery, environmental restoration and adjusting to change: Walking the South West Coast Path”

Noticing nature on the South West Coast Path: Using our senses and other pathways towards mental health benefits

Does using our senses and noticing nature when spending time outdoors enhance our mental health and wellbeing? I manage to carve out a rare day from my work, housework and family commitments for a micro-adventure, so after scraping the ice off my windscreen I set off for Bossington on a glorious sunny January day withContinue reading “Noticing nature on the South West Coast Path: Using our senses and other pathways towards mental health benefits”

New project – assessing the mental health benefits of walking the South West Coast Path

I’m excited to be embarking on a short @CRPRExeter research project commissioned by the South West Coast Path Association @swcoastpath (funded by Natural England) on the mental health and wellbeing benefits of walking the South West Coast Path. In tandem with this project I also aim to walk several sections of this much-loved National TrailContinue reading “New project – assessing the mental health benefits of walking the South West Coast Path”

Diversity, Inclusion and Representation in our Natural Environments

What do inclusion, diversity and representation look like when we come to engaging with our natural environments? And how can we widen access to our green and blue spaces? To tackle the pressing environmental challenges we face, including climate change, the environmental sector needs to engage with a greater diversity of people. As I startContinue reading “Diversity, Inclusion and Representation in our Natural Environments”

Screen time vs. nature connectedness for mental health: Is the internet (the world wide web) a poor imitation of the ‘wood wide web’?

Why do we spend so much time on the internet (and computer games) when there is a ‘wood wide web’ of nature to tap into that brings enormous benefits for our mental health and wellbeing, as well as for biodiversity and combating climate change? What are the effects of this giant experiment of practically unlimitedContinue reading “Screen time vs. nature connectedness for mental health: Is the internet (the world wide web) a poor imitation of the ‘wood wide web’?”

Exploring the Exe Estuary by canoe and paddle board: Reflections on management and wellbeing benefits

Having abandoned our attempt to walk an extended section of the South West Coast Path (@swcoastpath) because of the Covid-19 accommodation restrictions still in place, we plan a canoe trip down the Exe instead. Our youngest is unhappy at the start because it’s a pretty chilly mid-April day (the car registers 4 degrees Celsius asContinue reading “Exploring the Exe Estuary by canoe and paddle board: Reflections on management and wellbeing benefits”

An increase in gendered role conflict and its effects on wellbeing during the Covid-19 pandemic

As the kids finally go back to school and we begin to emerge from the latest lockdown I find I finally have some time and headspace to reflect. And because it coincides with the arrival of spring, the chance to spend time outside and recover from the challenges of the recent months is even moreContinue reading “An increase in gendered role conflict and its effects on wellbeing during the Covid-19 pandemic”

Spring discoveries in urban Exeter: Access and management of urban green space for biodiversity, health and wellbeing

I drop my daughter off for one of her regular clubs in Pinhoe, which happens to be near a park. I don’t feel like jogging so I take a walk. In five minutes I go from being in the middle of an industrial estate to this beautiful woodland of silver birch trees, ethereal in theContinue reading “Spring discoveries in urban Exeter: Access and management of urban green space for biodiversity, health and wellbeing”

Covid-19 and Tourism: Nature regeneration or negative visitor impacts? Reflections sparked by the Living Coast BioCultural Heritage Tourism (BCHT) conference, March 2021

As a resident of Devon emerging from lockdown I am looking forward with both delight and trepidation to the summer season when we can once again visit our favourite natural places further afield (despite having many beautiful green and blue spaces practically on our doorstep). So personally, I am glad to be able to planContinue reading “Covid-19 and Tourism: Nature regeneration or negative visitor impacts? Reflections sparked by the Living Coast BioCultural Heritage Tourism (BCHT) conference, March 2021”

How do we support access to our green (and blue) spaces for health and wellbeing? Insights from the East Devon Pebblebed Heaths

As I drop off my youngest at Woodbury Castle for his first (socially distanced) organised outing since the end of the latest lockdown, I notice the car park is full, as it always is these days when we visit. All of the Commons car parks have been extraordinarily busy for months, with local people visitingContinue reading “How do we support access to our green (and blue) spaces for health and wellbeing? Insights from the East Devon Pebblebed Heaths”

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