Malvern Hills Area of Outstanding Natural
What is an Area of Outstanding Natural
An Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) is an area whose
distinctive character and natural beauty is so outstanding that it
is in the nation’s interest to safeguard it. The main purpose
of an AONB designation is to conserve and enhance the natural
beauty of the area. An area's ‘natural beauty’
includes its geology, climate, soils, animals, communities,
archaeology, buildings, the people who live in it (past and
present) and the perceptions of those who visit it. The landscapes
of AONBs are equal in value to those of our National Parks and
command the same levels of planning protection. There are 40 AONBs
in England and Wales covering approximately 15% of their
combined land area.
The Malvern Hills AONB – facts and figures
- The Malvern Hills were designated as an AONB in 1959.
- The Malvern Hills AONB covers 105 square kilometres. It is 20
kilometres long and 9 kilometres across at its widest
- 58.52% of the Malvern Hills AONB is in Herefordshire.
- The AONB receives roughly 1.25 million visits every year.
- Ten different landscape types have been identified within the
AONB. These range from the flat, sandy estate lands in the south to
the high hills and slopes of the Malvern Hills themselves.
- The area contains 14 Sites of Special Scientific Interest
accounting for 10.9% of the AONB.
- The AONB is rich with history including Iron Age hill forts,
castles, listed parks and gardens and ancient boundary
- The geology of the AONB is internationally recognised through
the European Geopark designation.
Caring for the Malvern Hills AONB
There are representatives from local authorities, government
bodies, parish councils, landowners, community and voluntary groups
on what is called the Malvern Hills AONB Partnership.
The Partnership is the only body that has responsibility for
the AONB as a whole. The Partnership does not own or manage any
land but supports those who do, and provides strategic direction
and co-ordination for the area as a whole.
Malvern Hills District Council and the Malvern Hills
- Malvern Hills District Council helps with the prepare,
publish and review a management plan for the Malvern Hills
- In accordance with the Countryside and Rights of Way Act (2000)
this management plan formulates the Council’s policy for the
management of the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and for the
carrying out of their functions in relation to it.
- The Council has a legal duty to have regard to the purposes of
conserving and enhancing the Malvern Hills AONB.
- The Council makes a financial contribution to the operation of
the AONB Partnership each year.
- The AONB Partnership is financially supported by Natural
England, Herefordshire Council, Worcestershire County Council,
Gloucestershire County Council and Forest of Dean District
Malvern Hills AONB Management Plan Review
The new Malvern Hills AONB Management Plan
(2014-19) is currently subject to public consultation. At this time
you are invited to submit your views on the first draft through an
online feedback form. This form and the consultation document can
be found at: www.malvernhillsaonb.org.uk/management_plan.html
Malvern Hills AONB Guidance Documents
The Malvern Hills AONB produces a range of guidance documents
with the support of the AONB partnership. These can be found on the
Malvern Hills AONB publications
Further Information on the Malvern Hills
For more information on the Malvern Hills AONB and the AONB
Partnership please have a look at the Malvern Hills AONB
web pages or get in touch using the address or telephone number
Malvern Hills AONB Partnership
Tel: 01684 560616