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NEWS RELEASE No: 1532730 MARCH 2012

Let the kids loose for healthy outdoor fun this Easter

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Easter trail at Westonbirt

Forestry Commission England is encouraging families to spend some time in the great outdoors this Easter by taking a trip to their local forest.

With spring fast approaching and the promise of sunshine the holidays are an excellent opportunity to get outside with your kids, experience nature and get all the great benefits that go with playing in the open air. 

A recent survey showed that nearly three quarters of people in England thought that playing in woods is good for children’s health.

And compared to other activities on offer over the school holidays it’s also good for your pocket. In 2011 Netmums members voted 15 Forestry Commission England woodlands in their top free places to take kids.

Pam Warhust, Forestry Commission Chair says:

“We know that kids want to have fun. So all over the country our experienced rangers are organising some fantastic Easter activities aimed at getting children outside and excited about nature - from Easter egg hunts and trails to craft activities.

“Studies carried out by our Forest Research agency show that outdoor play not only has physical health benefits, but also improves mental wellbeing, boosting children’s confidence and self-esteem.

“Many local woodlands offer a great chance for low- or no-cost fun, so fingers crossed for some great Easter weather!”

Along with these seasonal activities our woods and forests offer many winding paths for children to explore, open green spaces for games of tag and natural play structures for them to climb and swing on.  For the younger children the fantastic picnic sites offer the opportunity to host your very own teddy bears picnic with family, friends or just their favourite cuddly toys, whilst taking in the fresh air. 

Visit our Get Fit in the Forest web page to discover more about what the great outdoors can do for you and your family, and to find your nearest Forestry Commission woodland. 

Notes to editor

  1. The Forestry Commission is the government department responsible in England for protecting, expanding and promoting the sustainable management of woods and forests and increasing their value to society and the environment.  Forestry makes a real contribution to sustainable development, providing social and environmental benefits arising from planting and managing attractive, as well as productive, woodlands.  Further information can be found at

  2. Figures taken from Public Opinion of Forestry Survey 2011: UK and England are available here

  3. It is recommended that children do at least 60 minutes of moderate exercise a day and combined with the health benefits of getting outdoors, the many play options available in Forestry Commission woodlands are the perfect solution for active kids to run of their excess energy.

  4. Netmums is the UK's fastest-growing online parenting organisation with over 1 million members and 4 million visitors 

  5. Visit to see the full list of places who received Gold, Silver and Bronze in the Netmums top free places to go. 

  6. Research taken from reports, case studies and evidence found on our website

Media contact: Faye Dawson 0117 3721085