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Title: Allotments, health and well-being
Author: Ericsson Nolan, Marion
Awarding Body: University of Essex
Current Institution: University of Essex
Date of Award: 2012
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Allotment gardening has long been reputed to have health and well-being benefits, yet there has been little empirical research to date. Two premises were formulated for this research: allotment gardening results in health and well-being benefits and works as being an antidote to urban living. The fieldwork took place on eleven allotment sites in the environs of Manchester. Initial work established the allotment gardeners' demographic information, how they gardened, what they produced and its contribution to family diets. Further work then examined the well-being of allotment gardeners following a session on the allotment and demonstrated positive mood and higher self-esteem outcomes. There was no difference for gender for any of the well-being measures; there were however, significant differences according to occupation. The allotment session benefited the employed and retired allotment holders differently, with the post-test mood of the employed being significantly more positive and the self-esteem of the retired increasing significantly. A comparison between the well-being of the allotment gardeners and non-gardeners showed the better well-being of the allotment gardeners. Employed allotment gardeners had better physical well-being than the employed non-gardeners, and more positive mood and self-esteem following the allotment session. The difference between the well-being of the different populations increased over time. The second premise was also supported showing that the pre and post-test mood and self-esteem scores did not differ significantly between allotment sites or for ,"gender. The effect of the allotment session was to increase the overall positive mood t!.; ..• :' ~: ' ." \ . I • of the employed to a level that was not significantly different to the retired. This research has implications from 'cradle to grave'. It underlines the importance of teaching children future skills such as growing, cooking food and caring for things. It presents evidence which supports the well-being gains from allotment gardening which accrue into older age.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available