Support 100 years of independent journalism.

  1. Science & Tech
  2. Coronavirus
14 May 2020updated 04 Sep 2021 12:25pm

ONS: One in eight homes have no garden, ethnic minorities and manual workers have least outdoor space

By Michael Goodier

Black people are almost four times less likely than white people to have access to gardens, patios or balconies during the lockdown, according to data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS)

Access to outdoor space, which studies have shown can benefit mental health, has become even more crucial during lockdown, as people have been forced to remain at home.

The ONS figures show that one in eight homes have no garden, and that there are large regional and demographic differences across Britain when it comes to accessing outdoor space.

Around 37 per cent of black people have no access to outdoor space at home, compared to just 10 per cent of white people.

People in “semi-skilled” and “unskilled” manual occupations, casual workers and those who are unemployed were almost three times as likely to have no garden compared to those in managerial, administrative, or professional jobs.

Sign up for The New Statesman’s newsletters Tick the boxes of the newsletters you would like to receive. Quick and essential guide to domestic and global politics from the New Statesman's politics team. The New Statesman’s global affairs newsletter, every Monday and Friday. The best of the New Statesman, delivered to your inbox every weekday morning. The New Statesman’s weekly environment email on the politics, business and culture of the climate and nature crises - in your inbox every Thursday. A handy, three-minute glance at the week ahead in companies, markets, regulation and investment, landing in your inbox every Monday morning. Our weekly culture newsletter – from books and art to pop culture and memes – sent every Friday. A weekly round-up of some of the best articles featured in the most recent issue of the New Statesman, sent each Saturday. A newsletter showcasing the finest writing from the ideas section and the NS archive, covering political ideas, philosophy, criticism and intellectual history - sent every Wednesday. Sign up to receive information regarding NS events, subscription offers & product updates.

Londoners also lose out: more than a fifth (21 per cent) of homes in the capital have no access to a private or shared garden.

The gardens that do exist in London are also the smallest in the country, at 197 square metres on average, compared to 332 square metres across Britain as a whole.

Content from our partners
How do we secure the hybrid office?
How materials innovation can help achieve net zero and level-up the UK
Fantastic mental well-being strategies and where to find them

However, those in the capital are most likely to have a park nearby, with 44 per cent of Londoners living within a five-minute walk of a park, compared to 28 per cent of people across Britain