The North Pennines AONB is a member of a family of protected landscapes across the UK.
AONBs are unique and irreplaceable national assets and along with National Parks represent our finest countryside.
Protected landscapes family
The aim of Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) designation is to look after our finest landscapes, not just for now, but also for our children's children to cherish and enjoy. They contain our country's finest landscapes and countryside and are home to some of our most charismatic and unusual wildlife.
There are 38 AONBs in England and Wales, covering 16% of the land area. The North Pennines covers almost 2,000 square kilometres and is the second largest member of this protected landscape family. In terms of landscape quality, the AONBs are recognised as the equal of our 15 National Parks and are given the same level of protection.
AONBs are diverse in character: areas of lowland heath; uplands; gently rolling hills; coastal plains and shingle beaches; each containing unique and fascinating landscape features.
What are AONBs?
- AONBs are national treasures to be shared and cherished by the nation
- AONBs are protected areas designated by Government and are part of a worldwide family of protected landscapes (IUCN Category V) that includes our own National Parks and those of North America and elsewhere, plus areas like the French Parc Naturelle
- AONBs are cared for by dedicated management teams working in partnership with local organisations. In the North Pennines this is the AONB Partnership and its Staff Unit. The National Association for AONBs is the independent organisation which speaks with one voice for all AONBs