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One in eight households has no garden, UK figures show

By Eleanor Barlow, PA

One in eight households has had no access to a garden during the coronavirus lockdown, figures have shown.

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) released the data after lockdown restrictions were eased in England to allow people to spend more time outside in public spaces.

The figures, based on data from Ordnance Survey and Natural England, show in London 21% of households have no access to private or shared gardens, although they are the most likely in the country to have a park nearby.

Black people are four times more likely to have no access to outdoor space, according to the data.

A spokesman for the ONS said: “In England, black people are nearly four times as likely as white people to have no access to outdoor space at home, whether it be a private or shared garden, a patio or a balcony.”

The figures showed 37% of black people had no outdoor space, compared to 10% of white.

Older people, who are being advised to stay at home as much as possible, are the most likely to have access to a garden, with just 8% of over-65s living without outside space.

Parks and green spaces in England are expected to get busier after the lockdown measures were eased on Wednesday, allowing people to picnic and sunbathe as long as they observe social distancing.

The ONS estimated more than a quarter of people in Great Britain live within a five-minute walk of a park, with 72% able to get to their nearest park within 15 minutes.

Those in more deprived neighbourhoods are about twice as likely to live five-minutes away from a park and in London 44% of people can get to their nearest park within five minutes.

The average park in Great Britain serves just under 2,000 people, the ONS said, with some in densely-populated areas catering for many more.

Clapham Common is the closest park for 46,000 people.

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