Greener workspaces

Working with the Royal Horticultural Society, South Yorkshire Police are exploring the positive impact plants and greenery can have on the wellbeing of officers and staff both inside and outside of the organisation.

How it works

South Yorkshire Police encouraged the RHS to attend force wellbeing meetings, to share the evidence base in relation to how horticulture can improve wellbeing.  At these meetings, we discussed how we could introduce greener spaces at police buildings, encouraging the attendees to actively be involved in developing the initiative. 

RHS arranged site visits for those involved, to explore how staff at the RHS use plants and greenery to improve their own wellbeing.

As part of the initiative, we purchased encouraged plants for the office environment resulting in each desk within a department and gave staff the option to choose a plant that suits their personality such as colourful, easy-going, prickly.  

We also worked together to develop wellbeing away days which involved visits to RHS Harlow Car with staff getting involved in outdoor activities.

These activities included creating ‘Eat Me Drink Me’ planters, wellbeing walks and making teabags to encourage a brew and a chat about their own personal experiences. These could also be shared with staff back in the office who were unable to attend.

At the close of the day, staff are issued with a 'Comfort Pack' which includes seeds to take away so that they can grow things at home.

Top tips for implementation

Tip 1
Plan an away day that the staff will get the most out of - there are a number of activities to choose from which some officers may not benefit from.
Tip 2
Ensure the right people participate, not everyone will benefit from bespoke initiatives such as this.
Tip 3
Encourage the RHS to present the science behind the benefits of plants for wellbeing to ensure buy in.
Budget required


Ease of implementation


Impact on investigators