Balancing the diverse landscape of Cornwall with pressure for new development, whilst enhancing Cornish sense of place, is becoming increasingly difficult. Community planning means lay people are now expected to draw together detailed polices to guide future development as part of Neighbourhood Development Plans (NDP).
The public-space team, working with the Cornwall Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty Unit, recognised the need for Local Landscape Character Assessment (LLCA) to underpin NDP policies and piloted a methodology with the Roseland NDP through 2014. This included discussions, workshop sessions and training for volunteers, as well as advice on the content and wording of environmental policies in the wider neighbourhood plan.
The Roseland pilot highlighted a further need for a landscape capacity assessment around the edges of settlements where the development pressure is greatest. The team produced and piloted a methodology for this. Both pilot methodologies were amended in response to volunteer comments, and now the final documents are being used by other NDP groups.
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Local landscape character assessment
Highly commended LI Awards 2016
Pilots completed in 2015 and January 2016. Application is ongoing
To prepare a landscape assessment methodology suitable for local communities to allow them to create landscape evidence based document to support the environmental policies within their Neighbourhood Development Plan
Landscape practice: Cornwall Council Public Space Team, Cornwall Area of
During the pilot studies, the landscape architect found that many volunteers appreciated the environment and the landscape around them, but were unsure what landscape character assessment involved, and how they would go about recording information to support policies in their Neighbourhood Development Plan. Through a series of workshops the landscape architects introduced communities to the layers of landscape character assessment from the National Character Areas to the 2007 Landscape Character Assessment showing different examples of Cornish landscapes to explain the different character attributes and how these changed in the different landscapes presented. The landscape architects helped groups understand that :