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Landscape Character Assessment


Evolution Of The Landscape
The Cotswolds Landscape

Preface and Introduction

The Cotswolds was designated as an AONB in 1966, in recognition of its special landscape character. The outstanding natural beauty of the area is derived from its remarkable visual unity, and yet scenic diversity. The unifying factor is, of course, the underlying geology.

    • 1.01 Appointment and Brief
    • 1.02 Purpose of the Cotswolds AONB Landscape Character Assessment
    • 1.03 Approach and Methodology
    • 1.04 The Scope and Context of the Study
    • 1.05 AONB Partnership Landscape Character Assessments
    • 1.06 Parallel Projects and Surveys
    • 1.07 Structure of the Report

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Evolution of the Landscape

The intricate interplay of numerous physical and human influences has shaped the landscape as it is experienced today. An understanding of these influences is central to the assessment process and provides a sound basis on which to define and describe landscape character.

    • 2.01 Appointment and Brief
    • 2.02 Geology
    • 2.03 Landform
    • 2.04 Drainage
    • 2.05 Soils and Agricultural Capacity
    • 2.06 Biodiversity

Human Influences:

    • 2.07 Introduction and Review
    • 2.08 The Evolution of the Cotswolds Landscape up to 1945
    • 2.09 Recent History: (1945 – Present)

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The Cotswolds Landscape

The Cotswolds landscape, designated as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty from 1966, forms the best-known section of the outcrop of Oolitic limestone that stretches across England from Lyme Bay in Dorset to the North Sea, in North Yorkshire and Lincolnshire. The Cotswolds landscape attracts many visitors both from this country as well as from around the world, in response to its perception as a rural idyll.

    • 3.01 Appointment and Brief
    • 3.02 Landscape Character Types and Landscape Character Areas
    • 3.03 Landscape Character Type and Area Boundary Determination

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    • 4.01 Key Landscape Character Assessment Terms
    • 4.02 Other Technical Terms
    • 4.03 Abbreviations


    • 5.01 General Landscape
    • 5.02 Landscape Character
    • 5.03 Landscape Character Assessment Methodologies
    • 5.04 Geology and Geomorphology
    • 5.05 Archaeology and History
    • 5.06 Ecology and Nature Conservation
    • 5.07 Cultural Associations


Landscape Design Associates would like to acknowledge the help and support provided by the Steering Group members and all those consultees who have contributed to the Cotswolds AONB Landscape Character Assessment, and the Landscape Strategy and Guidelines.

    • 6.01 Steering Group Members
    • 6.02 Principal Consultations
    • 6.03 Local Authority Partnership Officers Consultations
    • 6.04 Unitary Authorities and District Councils
    • 6.05 Other Miscellaneous Contacts
    • 6.06 GIS Baseline Data Sourcing
    • 6.07 Parallel Studies

Download this section: Glossary, References and Acknowledgements

Appendices & Figures

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