New design guidance for development in the New Forest

Published Friday 3 February 2012

A guide that aims to help achieve high standards of design in new development and protect the New Forest’s distinctive character has been adopted by the New Forest National Park Authority.

The New Forest Design Guide is a supplementary planning document that supports the policies in the Authority’s adopted Core Strategy. The guide is intended to help applicants and agents in preparing proposals for new development in the New Forest.

The Guide goes through the design process - from understanding landscape and settlement characteristics, to rural building influences, as well looking at matters such as external lighting and opportunities for wildlife. It will be used to inform planning decisions made by the Authority.

Pat Wyeth, Chairman of the Planning Development Control Committee at New Forest National Park Authority, said: ‘The Guide aims to inspire applicants to have regard to the features and characteristics of the New Forest’s buildings and settlements that make the National Park a special place. ’

Leo Randall, Deputy Chairman of the Planning Development Control Committee at the New Forest National Park Authority, said: ‘The Authority would encourage everyone thinking of submitting a planning application within the National Park to use the Design Guide to help achieve high standards of design.’

The Design Guide aims to:

  • Maintain and enhance the Forest’s rural landscape and built character, while embracing sustainability
  • Seek to retain valued Forest buildings that make a positive contribution to the historic character and appearance of the locality
  • Improve areas where there is the opportunity to reverse the effects of less sensitive development
  • Encourage communities to involve themselves in the design issues relating to the distinct character of the National Park.

To view the Design Guide visit


Notes to Editors:
Protect - Enjoy - Prosper

The New Forest National Park Authority’s statutory purposes are to:

  • Conserve and enhance the natural beauty, wildlife and cultural heritage of the Park - Protect
  • Promote opportunities for understanding and enjoyment of its special qualities – Enjoy.

We also have a duty to:

  • Seek to foster the social and economic well-being of local communities within the Park – Prosper.

The New Forest National Park was designated in March 2005. Its unique landscape has been shaped over the centuries by grazing ponies, cattle and pigs which roam free. Majestic woodlands, rare heathland and a spectacular coastline provide fabulous opportunities for quiet recreation, enjoyment and discovery.

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