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About the Partnership Plan

Why do we need a Partnership Plan?

All English national parks are required to publish a management plan or partnership plan for their area and to update them every five years. It is the overarching strategy document that guides and monitors the work of all those organisations who have a statutory responsibility for delivering the two statutory national park purposes:

1. To conserve and enhance the natural beauty, wildlife and cultural heritage of the National Park
2. To promote opportunities for the understanding and enjoyment of the special qualities of the area by the public.

National parks also have a duty, in taking forward the two purposes, to seek to foster the economic and social well-being of local communities within a national park.

The Partnership Plan is a plan for the place, not the National Park Authority or any other organisation. The next Partnership Plan will be published in 2021.

All those tasked with updating the Plan need to think about how we should work together to meet the challenges and opportunities for the National Park, now and in the future.

The story so far

The first New Forest Management Plan was published in 2010 and updated in 2015. It includes a summary of the special qualities of the New Forest and describes a vision for how the New Forest should look and function in 20 years’ time.

The Plan was updated in 2015 and has been published as the Partnership Plan for the New Forest National Park. It includes updated priority actions for the period 2015 – 2020 to help deliver the two national park purposes and duty. The Plan also gives examples of recent projects and describes new issues affecting the National Park.

It was produced jointly by all the main organisations with interests and responsibilities in the National Park, including:

  • Environment Agency
  • Forestry England
  • Hampshire County Council
  • Natural England
  • New Forest District Council
  • New Forest National Park Authority
  • Test Valley Borough Council
  • Verderers of the New Forest
  • Wiltshire Council.

They agreed the text and contributed many of the actions. Further actions will be taken forward by more than 20 other local groups and organisations. The final Plan was the result of comprehensive public consultation, with more than 100 responses received, many of which led to amendments to the document.

The main partners meet regularly and progress reports are being published annually to show progress of the actions.

The 2010 Management Plan

The Partnership Plan should be read in conjunction with the original Management Plan published in 2010. This contains more details about many aspects of the National Park and sets out the vision and long-term objectives for the area.

The next Partnership Plan 2021-2026

Work has begun to progress the next iteration of the Partnership Plan before the current plan expires in 2020. The review will be guided by a revised vision and agreed set of objectives which will be discussed and refined by partners. Once the vision and objectives have been drafted by the core partners there will be a period of engagement with a wide range of New Forest organisations and a public consultation is planned for early 2021 which will further inform the draft Plan.

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