AONB Review Consultation (closes 13th June 2023)
West Horsley Parish Council made its submission to the initial
call for evidence in January 2022, when the West Horsley area was classified as a
suitable ‘Area for Evaluation’’ regarding an extension of the existing boundary
of the Surrey Hills AONB.
In February 2023 Natural England, who is running the consultation process, announced that there will be a 14-week ‘Statutory Consultation’ period ending on June 13th during which consultees can make further comments.
Having studied the submissions, the draft proposal for ‘Candidate Areas’, i.e. areas which they are recommending for inclusion, was published and it appears that West Horsley has now been excluded (see map). However, this is only an initial recommendation and following the consultation there may well be alterations and anomalies – for example Natural England has included the Hatchlands Estate in their new boundary but excluded West Horsley Place, which seems to be curious logic. Interestingly, in their documentation they used a picture of West Horsley Place as an example of a historic Surrey Hills building but incorrectly labelled it Hatchlands, so it appears that nothing is yet finalised!
West Horsley Parish Council will be objecting to the draft boundary extension and submitting a counter proposal for at least the inclusion of the West Horsley Pace estate and will be working closely with Natural England (NE) to try and achieve a positive result.
Residents are encouraged to submit comments by June 13th.
Details of how to respond to the consultation can be found at Surrey Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty Boundary Variation Project - Defra - Citizen Space.
More information can also be read at Views sought on extending protected Surrey area - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)
The area now being considered for inclusion in the AONB is called 'Hatchlands & Clandon'.
West Horsley was originally included in Evaluation Area 6 (see map below).