The benefits of the green belts have been highlighted in a new report jointly authored by Natural England and the Campaign to Protect Rural England.
A survey carried out by the bodies noted that these cover 13 per cent of England's land surface and that 30 per cent of people live near or in such designated space.
Those who wish to go walking
in these places can enjoy 20 per cent more rights of way than other parts of England, the report notes, with the zones also including 44 per cent of country parks.
Green belt facilities provide good opportunities for people living in urban areas to don their walking gear
and enjoy the opportunities on their doorstep.
Dwellers in some towns and cities are particularly close to some outstanding countryside, with the city of Sheffield actually including part of the Peak District within its boundaries.
Other examples of countryside very close to a city include the Clent and Lickey Hills, just west of Birmingham.
Posted by Elaine Arthur