Opening up the outdoors

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Camber Sands from the air

The sun and warmth have returned, bringing flocks of holiday makers to the south coast beaches. This bank holiday weekend saw the largest number of visitors this year yet, with crowd numbers well into the thousands at Camber Sands. For many this will be the first opportunity to break from the confines of their lockdown microcosm – especially for those venturing from London.

The highly infectious nature of Covid-19 has necessitated the closure of all indoor public spaces, and scarcely could we imagine the effect this would have on our everyday lives–seeing friends and family through our screens, the normalisation of working from home, exercising online. In short, a digitisation of society.

Zooming out

Now that we are at liberty to enjoy ourselves outside again, perhaps it’s worth reminding ourselves why that is. Covid-19 spreads through respiratory droplets that remain dangerously concentrated in enclosed spaces. Being outside enables them to disperse, reducing the chances of the droplets being inhaled by others and therefore minimising the transmissibility of the infection.

Government advice

Nonetheless, the current government advice is to remain distanced from others (minimum 2 metres) who you are not in regular contact with when outdoors. Large group sizes are discouraged as this will increase the chances of transmission, and masks should be worn when stepping into enclosed spaces.

Activities that are now considered safe are walking, cycling, running, golf, fishing and rock climbing, to name a few. The government has published extensive guidelines on the risks associated with outdoor activities, including tiered risk categories to help you decide which pursuits are appropriate for you. You can find out more here.

No better time

Whatever your chosen activity might be, there is no better time to get outside in the sun and disperse any post lockdown lows. The hedges are full of blossom, the scents of early summer are in the air, and there is a scene reminiscent of old on full show – the return of wildflowers to verges, private gardens and public spaces that are bound to rejuvenate and restore.

Wild flowers

So grab an OS map, pump up your bike tyres, or take a day trip on a bus and reconnect with the infinite varieties of the outdoors.

Image Credits: Chris Mitchell https://unsplash.com/photos/7fwIZNyK9SI, freestocks https://unsplash.com/photos/J4Cll590mmE.

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