The project has now published its findings. Open Return investigated how we could manage countryside access in an integrated way. We define integrated access as using and improving countryside access to meet wider social goals.
To identify good practice, and learn lessons for the future, we set up nine access projects to act as case studies. Each was created in partnership with others to investigate how we can use or improve countryside access to promote one or more of the following:
We now find this a handy checklist when planning any access project.
You can also read our initial research: Assessing Needs and Preferences in Relation to Countryside Recreation in the Lake District National Park (PDF)
Open Return was established as a partnership between the Countryside Agency and the Lake District National Park Authority. It was one of six Integrated Access Demonstration Projects in England supported by the Countryside Agency, and the only one within a National Park. The six Demonstration Projects were designed to show how more and better access can be delivered by working together in partnership with local people, landowners and organisations. Each project had a slightly different focus to best reflect local circumstances.