Eco Park and Footgolf
While working with his father and business partner, John Wheelhouse, Sam jointly developed the Eco-park concept. This was the idea of creating an ecologically diverse park and interweaving recreational activities for all age ranges and abilities into the landscape.
An Eco-Park is a collection of varied wildlife habitats and outdoor activity areas for kids and families in the same place. Its unique concentration of things to do and see set it apart from traditional parks/country parks.
With lots to see and do together families are attracted to the Eco-Park and its healthy outdoor exercise and fun. They can connect with and learn about nature and take part in a wide range of activities together. They also spend time in a relaxed environment eating, drinking and buying local produce which provides an excellent commercial opportunity to set up a Farm Shop and Café.
An Eco-Park on a smaller scale could form the public or private open space surrounding a new piece of housing or mixed development. It can help gain planning permission for the commercial side of the business, encourage people to stay longer on site and create jobs and wealth as well as improve local biodiversity.
Footgolf originated in the summer of 2004 at the Princes Street Gardens, Edinburgh. Two
Architectural students Sam Green and Martin Fox decided to challenge each other by kicking a football from a fixed point to a predetermined location, the winner being the one who took the fewest number of kicks to get to the specific location. This idea developed into kicking a ball from a tee to a green in an adapted golf course setting, and becoming Footgolf as we know it now.
The first designed course was the centrepiece of an Ecopark at Copmanthorpe in the green belt of York which gained full planning approval in 2007.