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ชั้นมัธยมศึกษาปีที่ 5
เรื่อง The countryside
A Countryside for Health and Wellbeing:
The Physical and Mental Health Benefits of Green Exercise
How does nature make us feel? Much, of course, depends on what else is important in our lives.
Is it a good or a bad day? Irrespective of where we come from, it seems that the presence of
living things makes us feel good. They help us when we feel stressed, and if there is green
vegetation, blue sky and water in the scene, then we like it even more. This idea that the quality
of nature affects our mental health is not a new one, but it has not greatly affected the planning of
our urban and rural environments, nor the setting of public health priorities.
In the UK, more than 80% of people live in urban areas (Defra, 2004), though the greater growth
is now in rural areas. Urban settings by definition have less nature than rural ones. And less
green nature means reduced mental well-being, or at least less opportunity to recover from mental
stress. As natural green environments have increasingly come under pressure from economic
development, so it seems our own wellbeing has suffered as a consequence. Today, stress and
mental ill-health are becoming more common, and the associated public health costs are growing.
The World Health Organisation estimates that depression and depression-related illness will
become the greatest source of ill-health by 2020. This is partly because some other behaviours,
such as smoking, over-eating and high alcohol consumption, are likely to be coping mechanisms
for mental ill-health and stress, and have their own serious consequences. In addition, many
urgent physical health challenges, including obesity and coronary heart disease, are also
connected to sedentary lifestyles. Yet it is known that physically active people have a lower risk
of dying from coronary heart disease, type II diabetes, hypertension and colon cancer. In the UK,
there is evidence for a dramatic fall in physical activity over the past 50 years.
Bill Bryson Interview

Bill Bryson Fact-file

Where’s he from?
Bill Bryson was born in Iowa, USA, in 1951.
Why is he over here then?
A backpacking expedition in 1973 brought him to England where he met his wife and decided to
stay and be a journalist and writer. Having gone back to the United States in 1995 he returned to
live in Norfolk in 2003.
So what’s he done?
He is arguably most famous for writing autobiographical travel books (Notes from a Small Island,
Notes from a Big Country) as well as books on language and science (The Mother Tongue, A
Short History of Nearly Everything) but has spent much of his life as a journalist for The Times
and The Independent.
I see. So is he any good?
In 2006 he was awarded an OBE for his contribution to literature adding to the numerous awards
he has had for his work. His writing is often funny and insightful as well as being quite
Wow, that’s pretty good. So how come he likes litter then?
He doesn’t! Having always been fascinated by British heritage and the beauty of its countryside
he became President of the Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) in May 2007,
establishing an antilittering campaign across the country. The campaign is going from strength to
strength and he knows young people play a huge role in reducing litter, so that’s why he
interviewed with UK Youth Parliament
Bill Bryson is a world famous author and President of the Campaign to Protect Rural
England. Albert Simango (Deputy MYP Kingston upon Thames) and Jack Mayorcas
(UKYP London PG Rep) met up with him to talk about his current anti-litter campaign ...

“Walking in the countryside is so beautiful,

why would you want to make it ugly?”

How did you come to be President of the I approached the Campaign to Protect Rural
Campaign to Protect Rural England and England and they invited me to be their
what made you want to get involved in President. I am quite actively involved
this campaign? with the organisation but being President is
I just got really annoyed about litter. a ceremonial role like being a symbol or a
Walking in the countryside is so beautiful, frontman.
why would you want to make it ugly? I There have been other antilitter
didn’t know how to run a campaign so campaigns before, what is different about
this one that you feel will be able to make drivers who drop litter out of their car
a clear difference? windows should get given 3 points on their
I think the moment is right for this sort of driver’s licence.
campaign. There are lots of people who feel If somebody drops litter what does it say
the same way about litter and want about them?
to do something about it. We are going to It says that they aren’t thinking. I can’t see
push hard and get people to join the crusade why you wouldn’t want to keep the
and I believe there is a real chance the countryside looking lovely. It doesn’t make
message will get through. We want a clean, sense. People appreciate a clean
tidy Britain. environment. You wouldn’t expect to check
Did you ever drop litter when you were into a hotel room and be faced with an
young? unmade bed!
I can honestly say I have never littered We as a nation are behind with schemes
through choice. There are times when we such as bottle returns and charging for
are in a position where we are forced to plastic bags, why do you think this is?
though - I recently got stopped at St Pancras I think British society can be conservative.
when I tried to take my coffee through Whilst that is often a great thing and means
security to get on the Eurostar. They made that historical buildings and traditions
me put my coffee cup on the floor! Where are really well preserved, it can sometimes
appropriate, authorities have more of a duty mean that as a nation things take time to
to provide waste bins. change. It is the duty of the younger
Research showed that one of the major generation to take it forward and make
reasons for young people dropping litter changes.
was laziness, how can we tackle such a What do you think is the main problem
problem? facing young people of our generation,
We need to explain through intelligent besides littering and flytipping?
advertising campaigns that there is a I think life used to be easier when I was
consequence to dropping litter. Just as if you your age. I think education is a really big
are caught speeding and you get points issue facing young people. You have to be a
lot more serious about it. It is also much
harder to be an immigrant these days. When
I first got here it was easy!

Know your Countryside
Know your countryside
The Irish Countryside is a national treasure
that we, the Irish people, should be proud of.
It has a wealth of opportunities to offer. It is
also a place of work for 130,000 farmers.

Why live in the countryside?

• Clean, fresh air • The agriculture and food industry accounts
• More playing room for children for 9% of GDP and approximately 15% of
• Less traffic total employment.
• Outdoor activities on your doorstep • It guarantees the nation’s food supply.
• Housing and living costs may be reduced • It protects and cares for the natural
• Open spaces environment.
• Less noise • It is the rock on which the tourist industry
• More chances for family activities is based
• The chance of more interaction with - without agriculture, the countryside would
neighbours become wild and inaccessible.
Opinions of new rural dwellers • It provides hundreds of opportunities for
The following are some of the findings of leisure pursuits, sports and hobbies.
recent research by Agri Aware:
• 80% respondents considered their quality
of life in the countryside to be good, citing
peace and relaxation as the main advantages
to living there
• 91% stated that their area was welcoming
for new dwellers.
So, what do 130,000 Irish farmers do
• 69% described the community spirit in
their area as being good
Farmers work all year around to provide
• 70% of non-farmers considered farming to
Irish consumers with food. Some of the
be important to the local economy.
work involved is detailed below:
Why is agriculture important?
• 6 million cattle must be calved, milked,
• The Irish food and drink industry is valued
fed, housed and cared for.
at over €16 billion of which more than €7
• 4 million sheep must be lambed, fed, shorn
billion is exported to175 countries
and cared for.
• 1.7 million pigs must be housed, fed and
cared for.
• 13 million poultry birds must be housed,
fed and cared for.
• 306,000 hectares of land must be
ploughed, sown and sprayed to grow cereals
(wheat, oats and barley) to be harvested
each year.
• 13,000 hectares of land must be ploughed,
sown and sprayed to grow potatoes to be
harvested each year.
• 69,000 hectares of land must be ploughed,
sown and sprayed for other crops, fruit and
horticulture each year. Farming and the environment
• 3.8 million hectares of land must Fact
maintained for growing grass. Grass is used • Over €2.5 billion has been spent by
for grazing animals, cutting silage and farmers over the past ten years to construct
making hay. better animal housing and manure storage
• Farmers are also investing in alternative facilities on Irish farms.
activities on their farms including: angling, • Farmers follow strict voluntary and
forestry, organic food production, deer mandatory codes of practice to ensure
production, B&B accommodation, pony proper use of nutrients on farms.
treking, tourist trails, open farms for • Agriculture recycles 100% of all animal
children and visitors, wind farms and much manures that it produces.
more. • Animal manure is not waste, it is an
important source of nutrients for crops.
• Approximately 50,000 farmers are
participating in the REPS (Rural
Environmental Protection Scheme)
voluntary scheme. Farmer’s involved
in REPS follow a comprehensive
environmental plan for their farms. REPS
has been a major success and contributes to
better water quality, an increase in wild
birds and other species, and generally a
more varied and natural landscape.

• Avoid all livestock because of the possible

danger to yourself and/or distress it can
cause to the animals.
• Drive carefully on narrow country roads,
always expect machinery around the corner.
• Make sure that your car does not block
points of access or exit and is parked safely.
• Leave all farm gates as you find them.
Be safe! - Considerations for countryside • If following a recognised walking route,
users keep to the trail.
• Seek permission from the landowner in
advance of visiting land.
• Obey all warning signs.
• Do not interfere with livestock, wildlife,
plants, crops or machinery.
• Keep children under close control and
• Do not enter farmland if you have a dog
with you, even on a leash, unless with the
permission of the landowner.
• Don’t leave litter behind.
• Avoid any damage to hedges, fences or dry
stone walls.
• Guard against fire, especially near forests.