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Heritage, conservation, landscape and archaeology

Landscape architecture and our local landscape

South Somerset is a large, rural area that enjoys a high quality natural environment representing a wide range of landscapes and habitats from flower rich calcareous grassland to acid heathland; wet fen and grazing marshes, rich in invertebrate and bird life, to hay meadows, bluebell woods to orchards and parklands with veteran trees, supporting rare insects and lichens. These reflect the varied landscape and topography in the district, which in turn is underlain by an extensive and varied range of geological formations of limestones, clays and greensands.

The Council is committed to protect the character and diversity of landscapes of local and national importance, their distinctiveness, wildlife and biodiversity.

The Landscape of South Somerset describes the seven character areas of the district.

The protection of landscapes of national importance is also an objective. Parts of two Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONBs) lie within the district; The Blackdown Hills AONB and the Cranborne Chase and West Wiltshire Downs AONB.

A Species Guide to Tree and Shrub planting in South Somerset provides advice on planting projects in association with development and in the countryside related to the different character areas.

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