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Date posted: 15 March 2023

Have your say on extending Surrey Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty

Natural England has launched a statutory consultation for proposed extensions to the Surrey Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB). They are inviting interested groups and individuals to comment on the proposed extensions.

The proposals would increase the size of the AONB by 25% – an addition of more than 100 square kilometres.

AONB status helps protect communities from inappropriate development by providing legal protections and regulations to safeguard the landscape, wildlife, and cultural heritage of the area.

It can also bring a range of benefits to local people, from boosting the local economy by supporting small businesses and traditional industries, to improving health and wellbeing and creating valuable educational opportunities.

Stakeholders and members of the public can visit the Surrey Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty Boundary Variation Project - Introduction - Defra - Citizen Space to find out how to participate in the consultation – the deadline for responses is 13 June 2023.

Waverley Borough Council Portfolio Holder for Planning and Economic Development, Councillor Liz Townsend BEM, said:

“We welcome the proposals bought forward by Natural England to protect additional areas of countryside. AONB status protects the natural environment while also enriching the lives of those who live and work in the area. It can also help to ensure that any development is appropriate and sustainable.

“We will be looking at the detail of the proposals and I would urge our residents and businesses to do likewise and respond to Natural England. This will ensure that the review of the AONB takes into account the needs and concerns of the community.”

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