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General Visitor Surveys


Fieldwork for the "Monitor of Engagement with the Natural Environment" (MENE) started in March 2009, collecting information on visits to the outdoors in England. The survey is commissioned by Natural England with support from Defra and the Forestry Commission.  Further information is available at


Scotland’s People and Nature Survey (SPANS), commissioned by Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) with support from Forestry Commission Scotland, the national parks and Greenspace Scotland ran for the first time in 2013/14. The survey replaces the Scottish Recreation Survey, which ran annually from 2003 to 2012.   

Reports (including technical reports) for Scotland’s People and Nature Survey and for the Scottish Recreation Survey are available at


Household surveys of outdoor recreation in Wales since 2014 are run by Natural Resources Wales/ Welsh Government.  Information on these surveys is available at

Earlier surveys (in 2008 and 2011) were commissioned by a partnership of the Countryside Council for Wales (CCW) and Forestry Commission Wales (FCW), both now part of Natural Resources Wales

The Welsh Outdoor Recreation Surveys (WORS) in 2008 and 2011 asked residents of Wales about their use of the outdoors, places visited, including woodlands, motivations for using the outdoors, barriers to visiting the outdoors and the ‘latent demand’ for outdoor recreation.  

Results for 2011 are available at Welsh Outdoor Recreation Survey 2011 along with more detailed tables.

Headline results and data tables from the 2008 survey are available at Welsh Outdoor Recreation Survey 2008


Day Visits Surveys were carried out in 1994, 1996, 1998 and 2002-03, for a consortium of government departments and agencies interested in tourism and recreation. The surveys provided estimates of the total number of leisure day visits from home to towns, countryside and seaside in Great Britain (England, Scotland, and Wales). They also gave the demographic profile of visitors and attributes of the visits such as duration and distance.

Last updated: 10th March 2018