Don’t close parks – open up golf courses so there’s more space to exercise safely

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Instead of closing public parks during coronavirus, we should be opening up private green spaces so there's more room for everyone to exercise safely.

There are 300,000 acres of golf courses across the UK - ten times more space than we give to allotments - and 48,000 acres of golf courses within London and its Green Belt alone.

Why not open them up to public for exercise, as journalist Rosamund Urwin and others have suggested?

Chief Medical Officer Chris Whitty says being outside in a park is a "very good thing to do". The Government's guidance is clear: "exercise is still important for people’s physical and mental wellbeing" during coronavirus, so long as social distancing is maintained.

Rather than let our existing parks become overcrowded, it would be safer to open up more green spaces like golf courses.  

There's mountains of evidence that getting outdoors and reconnecting with nature is vital to our mental and physical health. We can help protect the NHS by expanding our Natural Health Service - opening up more green spaces for the public to exercise in safely.