Lose Yourself this Autumn
4th October 2017
Now autumn is here, busy adults are encouraged to take some time out and lose themselves amongst the trees in Longley Woods in Huddersfield. Lose Yourself, a new woodland wellbeing trail designed by Get Out More CIC, is a short walk around Longley Woods, starting and finishing at the Dog Kennel Bank entrance, within easy reach of the town centre. At each of the eight pauses along the way, walkers are guided to try a sensory activity such as listening to woodland sounds or using peripheral vision, or simply take time to pause and reflect. The self-guided walk can be accessed via a beautifully designed booklet or digitally by using mobile phones to scan the QR codes positioned along the route, which link to the online version of the trail found at www.naturalkirklees.org/outdoor/longley-woods/
In a modern, urbanised world of work and home pressures, many adults feel overworked and stressed. There is increasing research evidence to show that contact with nature is effective in helping to lower blood pressure, improve mood and combat stress. Annie Berrington of Get Out More said, “By encouraging adults to pause and reconnect with nature on their doorstep, we hope the trail will inspire local people to make a habit of being active in nature and enable them to access the health benefits that regular access brings. People only care about local nature spaces if they feel a connection to them, so we hope the trail brings more people to this beautiful woodland just outside the town centre, to discover what a calm and relaxing place it is, and they are inspired to help look after it.”
Louise Galvin from Friends of Longley Woods said, “Our woods are a hidden gem so close to the centre of town. While lots of folk remember playing in these woods in their childhood, most say they have not been for years. The walk is a wonderful opportunity to reconnect with the Woods, discover them for the first time, or experience them in a new way. It is a lovely place to wander and explore acting as a nature corridor connecting town and countryside and you may be surprised at the wildlife you see and hear if you pause a while. Friends of Longley Woods aims to maintain and improve the woodland for people and nature and we welcome new people that would like to get involved. facebook.com/FriendsOfLongleyWoods/ or [email protected]”
The project received funding from Kirklees Council as part of an initiative to create positive connections between communities and the council’s parks and woodlands and encourage them to become involved in their development and conservation. Photographs in the booklet were by Huddersfield-born photographer James Drury and design by Huddersfield designer Debby Fulgoni.