The first of the seven special qualities of the South Downs National Park are defined as its ‘diverse, inspirational landscapes and breathtaking views’, but at the time of commissioning this study there was no evidence about what these views were or what makes them special. Therefore the purpose of this project was to provide evidence on views to ensure this aspect of the park’s special qualities could be understood, conserved and enhanced for future generations, resisting the pressures for development in this most populous part of the country.
The study forms part of the landscape evidence base for the South Downs National Park Plan and is actively being used to support development management decisions and assess the impacts of proposed land-use change.
The project produced a series of user-friendly interactive tools that are widely accessible to the general public, and could be used widely elsewhere to enhance accessibility and understanding.
Approximate Map Location
South Downs National Park
South Downs National Park Authority
|Type of scheme|
Strategic landscape plan
Winner Landscape Institute Awards 2016
To prepare a View Characterisation and Analysis Study comprising mapping and analysis of views to, from and within the National Park and its setting; to form part of the evidence to guide both future planning and development management decisions by the South Downs National Park Authority and its partner authorities.
Landscape practice: LUC; client: South Downs National Park Authority
The study forms part of the landscape evidence base for the South Downs National Park Plan and is actively being used to support development management decisions and assess the impacts of proposed land use change. In the words of the client 'The South Downs National Park is located in the populous south east of England where developmental pressure is significant. Views from the high ground within the National Park can extend for 20km or more and many of these views are over landscapes that extend beyond the National Park but nonetheless have a strong association with them. The project has provided SDNPA and its stakeholders with impressive and robust evidence to assist with evaluating and assessing the likely visual impacts of future land use change both within and beyond the National Park’s boundaries. In particular, since its completion, the study and range of digital tools it provides have been invaluable in providing a baseline for SDNPA to assess the likely visual impact of strategic and infrastructure development proposals along its southern boundary with the coastal plain'.
It can also be used as a ‘snapshot’ of the state of the National Park, as a baseline against which future landscape and visual change can be monitored.