Chilterns AONB Boundary Review
The current designation of the Chilterns AONB protects a specific area. The boundary helps people to understand which places need careful consideration with regards to planning, development or land-use change.
The Chilterns AONB Boundary does not cover the whole of the Chilterns landscape, with some of the Chilterns natural characteristics extending past the invisible line that has been drawn.
The Chilterns Conservation Board has long been committed to working with its stakeholders to explore the case for and against extending the boundary of the protected area to cover the wider Chilterns landscape. Therefore, in June 2021, we welcomed Natural England’s announcement of its new Designations Programme, part of which will involve exploring both an extension to the Chilterns AONB and ways in which the management and governance arrangements for the AONB could be developed.
About the Chilterns AONB
‘Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB)’ is a formal designation for an area of land that is of national importance for its natural beauty. Read more about what makes the landscapes of the Chilterns AONB special, and learn about the contribution of AONBs to the national economy and tourism each year.
A boundary to benefit people and the landscape
The wider Chilterns area is home to many vibrant and growing communities. An extension to the Chilterns AONB would help to protect high-quality natural environments and historic features close to many of these urban areas for future generations to enjoy. The new designation would also help us and our partners to provide people living in these areas with greater opportunities to access to the countryside, benefit from the tranquillity it provides, and get away from the pressures of everyday life.
It is equally important for Chilterns’ wildlife habitats and cultural heritage. With its globally rare chalk streams, wildflower-rich chalk grassland and prehistoric settlements – including Bronze and Iron Age hillforts – reviewing the boundary of the AONB provides opportunities for a more strategic approach to caring for the special features of the Chilterns’ landscape that are currently outside the protected area.
Boundary Review: Frequently Asked Questions
For more information about the Boundary Review process, please read Natural England’s Frequently Asked Questions. If you cannot find the information you require in that document, please contact Natural England directly by emailing ChilternsAONBBoundaryReview@NaturalEngland.org.uk