Conclusion: Recreation Planning and the Development Process

  • Neil Ravenscroft
Part of the Macmillan Building and Surveying Series book series (BASS)


Recreation provision is something of a paradox. The very notion of ‘planning’ for a concept that is essentially personal to each of us seems misplaced or, at the very least, doomed to failure. Yet recreation, or at least leisure, is central to our lives, as either the antithesis or partner of work. Even so, we do not appear to possess anything as strong as a psychological ‘need’ for recreation, although to be fit and healthy most of us have a physiological need for exercise. Yet one of the original cornerstones of the planning system was a wish to protect existing urban open spaces, presumably predicated on an assumed psychological, rather than physiological, need for recreation. Despite its origins, however, recreation has not maintained its place in the planning system, or even in the wider sphere of public provision. This suggests that, rather than being central to our lives, it is really somewhat peripheral, a view supported by the lack of a model of the development process suitable for recreation provision. Yet both the public and private sectors of the economy have developed a wide range of facilities, to the point where recreation provision is one of the major local government cost centres and commercial recreation and tourism provision represents one of the fastest growing sectors of the economy.


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Copyright information

© N. Ravenscroft 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  • Neil Ravenscroft
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Land Management and DevelopmentUniversity of ReadingUK

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