Recent conferences where we have delivered papers include:

  • Southwest Landscape Institute Branch, October 2015, Neighbourhood Planning
  • East of England Landscape Institute Conference, March 2016, Landscape Character Assessment
  • Key Note Speaker at Iale Conference, September 2016, The Future of Landscape Assessment.

We are currently involved in the training and mentoring of Natural England staff in landscape evaluation.

We are also involved in children's education and the creation of outdoor learning environments.

Guidance on Integrating Landscape into Neighbourhood Plans

AFA is the principal author of guidance on integrating landscape into Neighbourhood Plans commissioned by The Suffolk Coast and Heaths and Dedham Vale AONBs. The guidance document is aimed at all those involved in preparing Neighbourhood Plans and looks at what is landscape and landscape character assessment, different types of assessment which may be needed including sensitivity and capacity studies and where to find information. Alison has spoken at a number of Landscape Institute conferences and training events in relation to this subject and has also contributed to the Landscape Institute Technical Information Note 04/2016 on Neighbourhood Planning.

Outdoor Learning Environments

Alison has worked closely with a local Cambridge school to design and develop an outdoor classroom within the school grounds. The aim of the project was to consider how the space might be developed to create a varied and engaging environment for learning and to involve the children of the school in the design development. Parents, teachers and children all volunteered in implementing the scheme which was opened in Summer 2016. The school is now looking at how the curriculum is translated into the outdoor environment so that the space is well used for learning but also forms a place for relaxation and well being.

Training and Mentoring in Landscape Evaluation

AFA was appointed by Natural England to train and mentor staff in the practical application of guidance on assessing landscape for designation. Alison ran a training course for staff in Suffolk and has subsequently supported the designations team in their evaluation of the Stour Estuary as part of proposals to extend the Suffolk Coast and Heaths AONB.