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Are traditional outdoor activities becoming a thing of the past?

A new survey reveals that children are becoming less active outdoors and urges parents to help kids get outside with Wild Night Out.

Ordnance Survey (OS) is urging families to take part in a national day of adventure and help their children experience the traditional outdoor activities which their parents used to enjoy.

Children making a den outside


A survey conducted by OS has highlighted that children are taking part in less outdoors activities than their parents. The results show that today’s children are less likely to have built a den, collect bugs, flown a kite or been camping. For instance, 38% of parents often built dens compared to 16% of their children. This was also true for collecting bugs (27% vs 14%), kite flying (16% to 10%) and camping in the garden (24% to 13%).

The research was carried out ahead of Wild Night Out 2017, a national event taking place on Saturday 1 July. The Wild Night Out ultimate day of adventure for Great Britain is designed to encourage people of all ages and abilities to use the night and day as an opportunity to get active and enjoy the outdoors.

Nick Giles, Ordnance Survey Leisure Managing Director, says: “Wild Night Out provides the ideal opportunity for people of all ages, and especially families, to get outside and enjoy new, and old, activities with their children. The recent survey supports many of the national statistics which highlight that some children are not benefiting from being active outdoors. We are urging parents to use this day to relive their childhoods and teach their children some of the traditional pastimes and even some new outdoor skills.

“Ultimately, we want to make the outdoors an enjoyable, accessible and safe place for everyone. Whether it’s a visit to the local park, a trip to a national park or a weekend camping, there are no excuses to getting outside."

The survey also reveals that 38% of children have never been camping, highlighting that children in Sheffield are the most camp-happy with 17% camping more than twice a year, contrasting with only 4% of children in London. Girls take the lead in the camping stakes with just under a quarter (23%) doing it once a year, 6% more than boys. More than a third of children (37%) admitted to missing their technology, while 36% of children stated that they would simply rather go on a different holiday. Children also attributed their lack of camping experience to their parents’ dislike of the activity.

Sign up to Wild Night Out and find out more at: www.wildnightout.org or find inspiration for Wild Night Out activities and places to visit at: www.getoutside.co.uk

Notes to Editors

Survey line carried out by Opinion Matters on behalf of Ordnance Survey. Sample of 1,000 parents on 11-18 years olds and 1,000 11-18 years olds.

Download Britain's Wild Adventure image

Contact us

For additional survey results including statistics by region and city/town:

Contact: Rob Andrews, Head of Media

Email: robert.andrews@os.uk

Phone: (+44) 023­80 055565


Channel website: https://www.ordnancesurvey.co.uk/

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