Insight Updates

Monday 15th July 2019

July is here and the sun is too! With the school summer holidays fast approaching, it is a great time to be around the natural beauty and natural environments whilst getting out and active at the same time.

With Staffordshire being home to the Peak District, National Forest and Cannock Chase, as well as fabulous parks areas and waterways, we decided that the focus of this month’s Insight Update Newsletter should be focused around understanding and promoting being active in these areas.

Therefore, welcome to the Open-spaces Insight Newsletter for July!

We hope you find the updates useful and enjoy the summer months!




NRPA – Making the Case: Parks and Health

Type: Research

Geography: National

Theme: Environment & Population, Health and Wealth

Description: The National Recreation and Park Association has created a handy tool-kit of insight, research and data resources that detail the benefits, barriers and current statistics on people using park areas and natural environments to become health, well and active. Park and recreational leaders are able to use the resources available to promote the importance of park areas and to detail how a physical activity initiative in such areas can generate significant health benefits to community members. The tool-kit is rich with data sets, fact sheets, presentations and infographics that is free to use. Please click the link in the sub-title for the full report.


Natural England – Monitor of Engagement with the Natural Environment

Type: Research & Data

Geography: National

Theme: Environment

Description: Natural England have teamed up with the Government to produce an insightful report on whether people across the nation regularly use our park areas, waterways and natural beauty hotspots and find out the reasons why they use these areas. The report goes into detail about the motivations for using such areas, locations and transport to parks and a summary of the barriers that people may face in visiting. It also indicates benefits and concerns of natural areas to which this report highlights the key messages portrayed by the public. Please click the link in the sub-title for the full report.


MAGIC Mapping – A great way to map our natural environments in Staffordshire

Type: Mapping

Geography: Local

Theme: Environment

Description: Teaming up with the Natural Environment organisation, the MAGIC Steering Group have created an interactive map that can be used to map out the natural areas of which our nation is home to. With various mapping tools available to use, the map offer information on a local scale regarding the rural, urban, coastal and marine environments and public spaces; detailing the type of open-access area each of these are and where they are located. It also goes into detail about whether these are statutory designated areas, the accessibility of such areas and whether these are management by schemes (such as woodland or forestry schemes). Please click the link in the sub-title for the full report.


Sport England – Local Insight on Communities

Type: Mapping / Data

Geography: Local

Theme: Population, Health and Wealth

Description: Sport England have released their Local Insight Database Tool; a mapping system that identifies the inequalities within each of our local areas, such as deprivation levels, economy status, crime, housing and social issues. The information can be compared by each LSOA across the nation and it also allows a comparison of data between such social considerations with levels of physical activity. Reports can also be accessed through this tool, highlighting in data captured in more depth and detail. A useful mapping system that helps to portray the level of inequalities in our county as well offering opportunities to compare with other aspects and areas. Please click the link in the sub-title to access this tool.


Tip of the month!


‘There is nothing like first-hand evidence!’


Sometimes, we come across some great information or data that is perfect for demonstrating a need for an initiative or influencing policy or strategy change etc.

However, it is also vitally important to make sure that there is evidence that can back up what you are aiming to evaluate against; thus, providing validity that the information you have gathered is tried and tested!

In addition, looking at evidence bases could open up further opportunities to find further relevant resources and, therefore, more relevant information to use for your programmes, policies and strategies.

This should not take too much of your planning time… however, it is important to make sure all bases are covered when looking to utilise research, data and insight.

Sherlock Holmes was definitely right about first-hand evidence!


For more info …


For further information, research and data sets to access, please do not hesitate to get in contact with the SASSOT team by following the link here.

Please follow the link here to our Insight Hub for more useful hints and tips, as well providing links to both national and local data sets that can be used to support your ventures through sport and physical activity.


For further information, please contact:

David Richards
Communities and Insight Officer
07800 619693