New poll reveals that Coventry's city-dwellers love nature but can't get enough of it

Thursday 8th June 2017

© Terry Whittaker - 2020VISION

30 Days Wild challenge from Warwickshire Wildlife Trust helps people enjoy nature every day

A new poll of 103 people living in Coventry reveals that city-dwellers have a strong affinity for nature and think that it’s important to help care for it. But the poll also highlights a conflict: while city-dwellers feel that nature is important to them, they find it hard to connect with it as much as they’d like to and a high proportion of people want to see more nature in cities.

The survey comes at a time when we have stronger evidence than ever before that nature is good for us and makes us happy.* However, people feel increasingly disconnected from nature and not enough is being done to ensure that the places where most people actually live and work – our cities – have thriving wildlife.

The poll reveals:
87% of Coventry’s city-dwellers surveyed feel that nature is important to them but 78% of them don’t think that they spend enough time in nature

Just 18% said that the last ‘wow’ moment they had with nature was in their local city area – while 56% of people’s most recent special moments with nature were from elsewhere, such as television, holidays and visits to the countryside. Only 10% have enjoyed a wild place as part of their working day in the last week

90% of adults think it’s important to help nature - 63% report doing something to help it in their garden - and 77% of adults want to see more nature in Coventry. 

The poll results are released as The Wildlife Trusts launch their 30 Days Wild challenge running throughout June, encouraging people to commit Random Acts of Wildness – daily connections with nature – every day for thirty days. More than 35,000 have pledged to do this so far including 3,000 schools and 1,000 businesses.

Anna Squires of Warwickshire Wildlife Trust says:
“The data for Coventry is heart-warming in so many ways, as 87% of respondents said nature was important to them, 84% said they felt more relaxed in green spaces and 87% said they knew where to go in Coventry to enjoy nature and wildlife. But 78% said they didn’t spend enough time in areas of wildlife and only 10% of people said they took a walk into a wild place during their lunch break.”

“Coventry as a city is blessed with a lot of green space, there are small pocket parks, pools, woodlands, rivers and large formal parks. You aren’t ever very far from a green space, even in the heart of the city. But perhaps our busy lives mean that, although we know it’s good for us and we enjoy it, we don’t make the time to get out into nature. We, as trust, really want to encourage people to carve out that time in their days and 30 days wild is a wonderful chance for us to do that – that wow moment is out there just waiting for you!”

Copyright Bertis Gregory 2020Vision

The Wildlife Trusts are urging everyone to take part in our 30 Days Wild challenge and have ‘wow’ moments every day during June. Discover the urban jungle - spot gorgeous goldfinches or ferns growing out of walls! Take action for nature by planting a mini-meadow in a windowbox or create a container pond!

Among those taking the 30 Days Wild challenge this year are:
Amy Williams OBE, Olympic Gold Medallist, TV presenter and public speaker, says: “I have always been passionate about wildlife and looking after the world we live in. I’ve been lucky to go on some amazing wild adventures all around the world, but my love of nature began at home. Some of the greatest adventures happen in your everyday life. 30 Days Wild is perfect for me; it combines my love of being outdoors and staying active with my creative side, too. I can’t wait to get involved!”

Dr Alice Roberts, Academic, writer and broadcaster, says:
“Getting out in the natural world is good for the mind and body. Humans are meant to spend time in nature and be part of it – it’s how we evolved over thousands of years. And it's not just for the weekend – it should be every single day. Immerse yourself in nature this June with 30 Days Wild!"

The impact of taking part in 30 Days Wild has been tracked by academics at the University of Derby. Their study* found that people who did something ‘wild’ each day for a month, felt happier, healthier and more connected to nature, with added benefits for the natural world too.

Dr Miles Richardson, Director of Psychology, who led the study, said:
“The impact of 30 Days Wild adds to the compelling argument for bringing nature into our everyday lives. Two months after taking part in 30 Days Wild, there was a 30 per cent increase in the number of people who reported their health as excellent. Last year’s results also show people’s happiness continued to improve after 30 Days Wild ended, which illustrates its sustained impact. This is important as it is happiness and connecting with nature that influence improvements in health. Our study also shows that those who benefitted most were younger adults and those who weren’t ‘nature lovers’.” 

Tagged with: 30 Days Wild, Coventry, Nature, Poll, Survey, Urban