Walkers on Ullock Pike overlooking Derwentwater copyright Tony West

Landscape Character Assessment

Landscape is not just the view. It's about the relationship between people and place and is the setting for our lives. It can mean a patch of local green space as much as a mountain massif. Everywhere is important to someone. The Lake District landscape in particular is important because it has:

  • Economic value, providing the setting for economic activity and often becoming a central factor in attracting business and tourism.
  • Social and community value, as an important part of people's lives, contributing to our sense of identity and well-being, and bringing enjoyment and inspiration to locals and visitors alike.
  • Environmental value, as a home for wildlife and a cultural record of society's use for the land.

So it is essential that we understand the character of the landscape when we consider how it might change - so that any change is for the better.

What is Landscape Character Assessment?

It's a tool for identifying the features that give a locality its 'sense of place' and pinpointing what makes it different from neighbouring areas.

Landscape Character Assessment provides a framework for describing an area in a systematic way. It lets different interest groups make better judgements by knowing what's present and what is distinct. Then any change can respect local character, or add to it, or even change it if that is what is desired. It won't make decisions for you but it will ensure that you make informed choices.

Current Lake District National Park Landscape Character Assessment and Guidelines

This Landscape Character Assessment has been produced by consultants for a partnership of Natural England, The National Trust, Friends of the Lake District and The Lake District National Park Authority.

It's for everybody including landowners and land managers, planners, architects, landscape architects, developers, students and anybody needing information about the landscape to inform proposals for change.

It also has some great insights for anyone interested in the Lake District landscape.

The interactive Policies Map - Policy 5 can be used to view different character types and areas of distinctive character.