Outdoors for everyone
The Outdoor Accessibility Guidance is designed to help make our outdoor places and spaces, routes and facilities more accessible, and outdoor experiences more inclusive, so they can be enjoyed by everyone. It is written for anyone managing land for public access and recreation, including land managers, community trusts, community groups and volunteers, access and recreation teams and owners. It will also assist anyone involved in designing outdoor spaces, planning outdoor activities and creating communication materials.
A new take on established guidance
The guide updates and expands ‘Countryside for All’, which has been widely respected as a benchmark reference for improving access to the countryside across the UK since it was published in 1997. The Fieldfare Trust transferred the copyright of ‘Countryside for All’ to Paths for All in 2019. In 2020, Paths for All commissioned the Sensory Trust to review the original guide. There was overwhelming support for a comprehensive overhaul to reflect a wider diversity of people and landscape, and to bring it in line with the Equality Act 2010 and other relevant legislation. In 2021 Paths for All commissioned the Sensory Trust to develop this new version of the guide.
A focus on equal access
The guide is designed as a practical reference with techniques, tools and design details to help people meet, and where possible exceed, their legislative duties under the Equality Act 2010. Examples of good practice show how these principles have been implemented on the ground, and signpost to further information and expertise.
Creating accessible places
The guide covers the UK and all types of publicly accessible land, from lightly managed and remote countryside to more intensively managed parks, community spaces, paths and trails. It recognises a wide diversity of uses, from a local walk or wheel, horse ride or cycle, to venturing out on a countryside trail or visiting a forest, garden or park.
What do you think?
Your feedback can help us to continually improve this guidance. Please complete this online form to share your opinions and ideas for updates.
We would like to thank everyone who has funded, supported and contributed to the development of this guidance. In particular, our thanks to the creators of the original Countryside for All guide and all the guidance that has supported the development of good practice and helped pave the way for this new work.
This guidance will be updated regularly to respond to changes in the application of inclusive outdoor design and management. These will be managed by Paths for All and Sensory Trust.