Bookmark and Share

Surrey Hills Landscape Assessment


Through the Surrey Hills Landscape Assessment, the Countryside Commission wanted to explore the cultural aspects of this Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty as well as appraise its technical aspects. The successful consultants, the Centre for Environmental Interpretation (subsequently the independent practice, Prospect) interpreted the project brief by appointing a team of seven artists with a supplementary artist’s brief to produce a workbook recording their responses to the landscape. Their creative work, including visual images, poetry, an essay and an artist’s statement, informed the scope and focus of the consultants’ landscape assessment, as reported by Prospect in a magazine article.

Positive feedback about the process and the experience from all parties involved suggests that this approach could be developed further. The landscape assessment helped shape the Management Strategy for the AONB and resulted in a poetry residency which involved farmers, planners and National Trust wardens as well as school children in workshops. A Heritage Lottery Fund bid was subsequently submitted for a project to restore, interpret and celebrate culturally significant viewpoints in the Surrey Hills AONB.