Places and Spaces For Health and Wellbeing 2020

Places and Spaces for Health and Wellbeing 2020

Ensuring Physical and Mental Health in our Communities

April 27th, 2020 – Saracen House, Glasgow


The health and wellbeing of a population is a key focus in any thriving nation. With this in mind, the Scottish Government is now focusing equally on both mental and physical health and wellbeing. As such, it is widely recognised that many of the underlying determinants of inequalities in overall health and well-being are determinant on our environment, for example, our built environment and communities are key to reducing these problems and dealing with inequalities; key factors inculding access to health, mental health, counselling and social care services, the provision of green space, free options for exercise and play for all generations, employment opportunities and the consistency of living environments without derelict and disused land, which can have huge negative impacts on public physical and mental health, must be dealt with in a collaborative manner between government, communities and other organisations using all of the tools, data  and technologies available.

There are a growing number and variety of organisations, including Scottish Government agencies, NDPBs, private companies and charities, working in this field and looking at a variety of issues and strategies. These issues include the association between health, both physical and mental, and access to green and recreation spaces, the benefits of play and exercise, and the importance of active travel and how new strategies and technologies can encourage collaboration and connectedess to deliver measurable results. As always, funding is key to addressing these issues, which is highlighted through funding programmes such as such as the the Green Infrastructure Fund, The Scottish Land Fund and the newly pledged funding of £250,000,000 for mental health in Scotland.

This conference will examine the connections between health, physical and mental wellbeing, technology, collaboration, place making and use of the built environment and communities . In addition, it will summarise the relationship between all of these issues and topics in relation to physical and mental health, along with analysis environmental, economic, social and cultural wellbeing, through expert analysis and evidence-based case studies.

A copy of the agenda for the event follows below and will be updated regularly. If you have any queries regarding the event please contact us via

Event Agenda

9:10 Opening remarks from the Chair – Danny McKendry, Senior Landscape Architect, A+DS

9:20 Session 1 – Understanding the issues, barriers, solutions, progress and policies 

Understanding the current situation and policies – Scottish Government Representative

Understanding the impacts of space on physical and mental health – Dr Russell Jones, Public Health Programme Manager, Glasgow Centre for Population Health

The impacts of of poverty and unemployment on wellbeing within our communities – Dr Gavin Maclean, Lecturer, School of Applied Sciences, Napier University and Prof Abigail Marks, Professor of Work and Employment, Professor of Work and Employment, University of Stirling

Can placemaking deal with loneliness and isolation? – Karen Mechan, Interim Team Leader, Social Isolation and Loneliness Team, The Scottish Government

How can The Place Standard identify need and what are the implications of the Young People’s Place Standard – John Howie, Programme Manager, NHS Health Scotland

Table discussions and brain storming


11:20 Break

12:10 Session 2 – Identifying local solutions to health issues

Engaging with the Planning System to create healthier communities – Petra Biberbach, CEO, PAS

Accessible everyday exercise through cohesive communities and active travel – Rona Gibb, Paths for All

Creating Healthier, wealthier, more attractive to towns; a SIDs case study – Margaret Fraser, Regeneration Manager, ng homes

Access to services within the community

Integrated community design case study

Table discussions and brain storming


13:20 Lunch and Networking

14:00 Session 3 – National Solutions, practicalities and implementation

Suicide reduction and prevention

Bringing disused and derelict land into use to create healthy environments – Dr Simon Cuthbert Kerr, Head of Land Reform, The Scottish Government

Early interventions for Children’s long-term mental health – Marguerite Hunter-Blair, CEO, Play Scotland

Finding the right funding – Representative of The National Lottery

Table discussions and brain storming


16:00 Closing remarks from the chair

16:10 Close

Delegate places for this event are a limited  and these will be allocated on a first-come-first-served basis, so we do recommend booking early to avoid disappointment.

You can book your place by clicking here, or using the button below.

If you are interested in sponsorship or exhibition opportunities, please contact us at