Residents across Cheshire West and Chester can benefit from taking part in Healthy Conservation sessions in parks and green spaces across the borough this winter.
The sessions, as part of Cheshire’s Natural Health Service, provide participants with an introduction into conservation activities in community woodlands, parks and green spaces, whilst improving their physical activity and mental wellbeing.
Cheshire’s Natural Health Service, which is part-funded by Cheshire West and Chester Council and managed by The Mersey Forest, uses the Boroughs green spaces to help tackle health inequalities. The service, which has been running since 2017, has helped nearly 4,000 people locally connect with nature and in turn improve their health through activities such as group walking, mindfulness, horticulture therapy, healthy conservation and bushcraft.
The Healthy Conservation sessions are open to all residents and participants will get to learn new skills, taking part in activities such as hedge and tree planting, pond maintenance and wild flower seeding.
Alongside supporting residents health and wellbeing the sessions will also help to improve and protect the natural environment, an important part of the borough’s Climate Emergency Response Plan which sets out how the borough will become carbon neutral by 2045.
Councillor Louise Gittins, Leader of the Council and Cabinet Member for Poverty and Wellbeing, said, “Throughout the pandemic we’ve seen how getting out in nature has incredible benefits for people’s health and wellbeing. These sessions provide residents with an opportunity to learn new skills whilst connecting with nature and others in their community.
“One of the Council’s priorities is to help our residents live longer, healthier and happier lives something that is central to this programme of work. Through Cheshire’s Natural Health Service, we are able to use our own green spaces as health assets, empowering residents to take a preventative, self-care approach to their wellbeing, whilst enjoying and protecting the many beautiful green spaces we have in the borough.”
Sessions are currently organised to take place at the following parks and green spaces.
- Jubilee Field in Huntington, Chester
- Whitby Park in Ellesmere Port
- Sytchcroft Park in Neston
- Saxons Lane, Northwich
Full details on dates and times of sessions, including how to take part, are available on: www.naturalhealthservice.org.uk/Cheshire
Funding for the part of the programme has been secured through the Government’s Contain Outbreak Management Fund (COMF), which provides funding to local authorities in England to help reduce the spread of coronavirus and support local public health.