Quantock Hills Blog

Nature and Wellbeing in the Quantocks

- A new project across Somerset's AONBs

Katy Coate

Posted by Katy Coate on 28 July 2016

Nature and Wellbeing in the Quantocks Kristen Lambert is leading the new Nature and Wellbeing Project across all 3 Somerset AONBs. The project aims to support local people to improve their physical and mental wellbeing by participating in activities on the Blackdown, Mendip and Quantock Hills.

Amazingly, we are already 5 months into the project and have started to make some really successful links with health and wellbeing groups across the county. This has included work with Eastover Primary School, Somerset Partnership Community Mental Health Team and The Alzheimer’s Society through their Memory Café groups. Future work is planned with a number of different groups that include a local charity supporting the emotional wellbeing and mental health of young people, called ‘The Project YP’, Health Connections in Mendip and Knightstone Housing Association.

Eastover Primary School, Case Study
We have been working with Eastover Primary School, in Bridgwater, who decided to bring up groups of year three pupils over a 6 week period, to the Quantock Hills. These visits are about offering children the opportunity to connect with nature and experience free play and exploration within quality natural environments. The sessions took place in and around Fyne Court in Broomfield, with support from our National Trust colleagues. The environments allowed for plenty of physical activity and opportunities for children to develop confidence in their own abilities through trying out new and unfamiliar things and managing risk for themselves.


We also worked with Somerset College, who kindly brought up students studying photography to support the year threes to capture their experiences and the connections they had made with the natural world. A selection of these photographs will be displayed within the local community for people to see over the summer.


The project has been a real success with lots of learning, physical activity and time for pupils to be children! Many have really thrived in this environment.  For these reasons the school are really keen for this work to continue and for visits to the Quantock Hills to form an important part of the school experience for Eastover pupils across all year groups. We will therefore be continuing our work to support Eastover Primary School to ensure that the project is sustainable and continues into the new school year.

 


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Quantock AONB Service
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Somerset Wildlife Trust
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