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The Coast & Heaths Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) is an outstanding landscape. Landscapes have always changed over time, but the fundamental quality of AONB landscapes should retain their natural beauty. It is the aspiration and legal duty placed on statutory bodies to conserve and enhance the natural beauty of the area.

An AONB is not about preserving the landscape or having no development, but as an area that is designated for its outstanding landscape development should contribute to its natural beauty.

The Suffolk Coast is also recognised as a key location for the delivery of a number of Nationally Significant Infrastructure Schemes, including large scale offshore wind projects and a 3rd nuclear power station at Sizewell.

The need for new development must be carefully balanced against the requirement to conserve and enhance the Natural Beauty of the AONB. There are a number of useful resources to help inform planning decisions within the AONB.

Distant view of boats on river

Planning Overview

People at Walberswick Green

The AONB role in Planning

A photo of heather, gorse and pine trees

Guidance for Planning in the AONB

Landscape view of Snape and river

Key Legislation

View of Aldeburgh from the air

Planning and the Management Plan

Starry Sky over the horizon

Position Statements

Sizewell Nuclear Plant seen from a beach

Nationally Significant Infrastructure Projects

A windmill at Thorpeness up against a blue sky

Boundary Maps