'The Saltford Area of Great Landscape Value' - SPC's definition of Saltford's landscape - Saltford Parish Council

At Saltford Parish Council’s March 2024 meeting, it resolved to adopt as a planning policy document its paper titled ‘The Saltford Area of Great Landscape Value – Planning Policy and Character Appraisal by Saltford Parish Council’.

The Parish Council agreed that this new paper would serve as a reference document for SPC planning policy purposes, specifically in relation to future proposal responses that may affect or seek to develop Saltford’s Green Belt landscape area. Saltford Parish Council – in describing Saltford’s landscape setting as The Saltford Area of Great Landscape Value – seeks to provide information and data that offers planners and developers a greater insight of this landscape’s high quality and value to the community.

As a stand alone document but also to complement the ‘The Saltford Area of Great Landscape Value’ paper, at its March meeting SPC also resolved to adopt as a SPC document ‘The Saltford’s Area of Great Landscape Value – A Photographic Record’. This collection of photographs provides a snapshot of the rural countryside setting that the Green Belt surrounding Saltford’s housing boundary provides.

‘The Saltford Area of Great Landscape Value’ paper (and photographic record) supports requests by Saltford Parish Council to B&NES Council – the Planning Authority – to designate landscape protection to an area referred to by SPC as ‘Saltford South’, e.g. Saltford South of the A4.

Following B&NES Council’s rejection of SPC’s bid, as viewed by SPC as a decision made without sound grounds, the Parish Council agreed to seek support from Jacob Rees-Mogg for its original bid and to request he make representations on Saltford Parish Council’s behalf as appropriate. Further information about this will be recorded in SPC’s minutes, which will be available on the ‘Meetings – Agendas and Meetings‘ section of this website.

Information about SPC’s requests to B&NES Council made in January 2023 and January 2024, including papers submitted, can be found in SPC’s news articles:

SPC agrees to seek landscape designation for ‘Saltford South’ (January 2023)

SPC reaffirms to B&NES Council its request for ‘Saltford South’ designated landscape protection‘ (January 2024).

The information below has been taken from the ‘Saltford Area of Great Landscape – Planning Policy and Character Appraisal by Saltford Parish Council’ as adopted at SPC’s March 2024 meeting.

Saltford Area of Great Landscape Value – Planning Policy and Character Appraisal

The landscape surrounding Saltford is an intrinsic part of Saltford’s heritage and a consequential reason why people live in Saltford or neighbouring communities. The landscape is collectively owned and cherished by the community and rightly expects the Parish Council and the Local Planning Authority to protect the landscape for residents, visitors, and wildlife.

Saltford’s Green Belt landscape, the green open landscape surrounding Saltford’s Housing Development Boundary in the shape of a ‘C’, covers an area of approximately 4.4km2. To the east of the parish of Saltford, in the parishes of Kelston and North Stoke, lies the most western part of the Cotswold National Landscape AONB.

Saltford’s rural landscape contains a rich variety of wildlife as well as a matrix of Public Right of Way (PROW) footpaths and permissive footpaths/bridleways that allow residents and visitors to gain essential health and wellbeing benefits from the openness of the landscape. The southern edge of the golf course provides an overall and attractive setting and backdrop to the open fields, comprising mixed deciduous and coniferous trees and vegetation of differing heights, shapes and shades of green.

It is Saltford’s longstanding and outstandingly attractive landscape setting that makes Saltford such a unique rural village in the Avon Valley between the cities of Bath and Bristol thus contributing to the wider landscape setting of those cities and other neighbouring communities including Keynsham, Corston, Newton St Loe, Kelston and North Stoke.

As the parish of Saltford is immediately adjacent to the Cotswold National Landscape AONB, Saltford is viewed directly from that AONB, and vice versa. Both landscapes are inextricably linked and provide a harmonious backdrop for each other. Harm to either of these ancient landscapes through inappropriate development would harm the character setting of the other.

When viewed from the higher levels of the Cotswolds National Landscape AONB (e.g. Kelston Tump and the Cotswolds ridge), Saltford’s landscape provides a countryside vista of high visual quality whilst adding to the setting of Saltford’s wooded areas and footpaths. Saltford’s landscape makes a significant contribution to the rural and tranquil setting of the locally distinctive Kelston Tump itself.

The wooded areas and fields surrounding Saltford are viewed from local lanes and roads including Manor Road, Montague Road, Longwood Lane, Ashton Hill, Gypsy Lane and the Bath Road (A4) when approaching Saltford from Bath and Keynsham/Bristol, and from regularly utilised local permissive footpaths and public rights of way footpaths (PROWs) that are used by residents and visitors alike.

The crossroads where Longwood Lane meets Gypsy Lane on the southern boundary of the parish of Saltford is Saltford’s highest viewpoint. From there can be seen the peaks of the Brecon Beacons (aka Bannau Brycheiniog) 54 miles away looking West NorthWest. To the north and 35 miles away the Forest of Dean and its outpost, May Hill, can be seen; and to the east, much closer, are the southern slopes of the Cotswolds National Landscape AONB.

The area-wide importance in landscape terms for this area of Bath and North East Somerset and the Avon Valley, the River Avon itself is a Site of Nature Conservation Interest (SNCI), as described in the section on ‘WILDLIFE HABITAT & ECOLOGY’, provides a necessity to afford long term protection in planning terms of this area. This is to safeguard its distinctive character and exceptional attractiveness together with its tranquillity, ecological and amenity value that is so necessary for the quality of life and the “quality of place” for residents of Saltford, neighbouring parishes and the cities of Bath and Bristol between which this landscape exists and attracts many residents of those cities who visit or pass through.

Bristol and Bath are surrounded by attractive and tranquil landscapes similar to Saltford’s and the Cotswold National Landscape AONB. These landscapes, including Saltford’s, contribute to the sense of place of those cities and make city-life more attractive and amenable when rural, tranquil landscapes are within easy reach.

Without suitable protection, their step-by-step loss to development would cause irreparable harm not just to wildlife through the destruction and permanent removal of important ancient habitats, but greatly impair the quality of life of residents and visitors from nearby cities who rely on green open spaces for their health and wellbeing, whether that be access via local lanes and footpaths, or the green tranquil setting they provide as a backdrop to daily life.

93% of households that responded to the Saltford Parish Plan questionnaire in 2009 specifically said that they wanted Saltford’s Green Belt to be protected. Since 2009, support for the local landscape is likely to have increased due to the Covid-19 pandemic lockdown in 2020 when residents had more time and need to experience the local landscape for their own health and wellbeing during such a challenging time.

The support and recognition of Saltford’s Local Planning Authority, B&NES Council, for a landscape designation, through either an AGLV or NE2a (Landscape Setting of Settlements) designation would provide reassurance to the community of Saltford and neighbouring parishes that the Local Planning Authority values this landscape as much as the community it seeks to represent and will protect it from development.

Key Aspects of The Saltford Area of Great Landscape Value

Historic Landscape Setting

The following description of Saltford’s landscape setting is from B&NES Council’s 2015 Evidence Base for Policy NE2A (Landscape Setting of Settlements) prepared for the 2017 Placemaking Plan:-

Natural Factors: The low hillside backdrop of the southern slopes of the Avon valley lies to the south of the village. This is an attractive and subtle landscape backdrop of increasingly steeply sloping pasture fields* and includes the well teed Saltford Golf Course and adjacent steep sided, wooded tributary valley1.There is also a distinctive tree belt2 on the west side of the golf course which follows the north-south side of a lane3.

* Correction: These are and have been arable fields

1Folly Wood 2Longwood 3Longwood Lane

Most of Saltford South was identified in the B&NES 2021 landscape assessment report prepared by Land Use Consultants Ltd as being in the Northeast portion of the area assessed and described as “Farmborough Plateau and Brook Valleys”, the assessment of which includes these statements that are relevant to both the south and north sides of Saltford: –

  • Historically much of the area was enclosed in the late medieval period.
  • The open and undulating character of the landscape gives rise to many extensive views often framed through field openings. From some elevated areas there are long views to the Cotswold Hills, and to Bristol over the Chew Valley.
  • The varied topography gives rise to interesting light and shading effects emphasising the characteristic landform.
  • Despite its proximity to Bath, the area retains a largely rural character (due to the relative lack of modern development and small settlements) and experiences relatively dark night skies. Away from settlements there is a strong sense of tranquillity.

The open arable farmland of fields sloping south to north bounded by stonewalls of Lower Jurassic Blue Lias limestone rocks, low fencing and hedging populated with trees, provide a palpable sense of a tranquil environment that is in harmony with nature, whilst providing open countryside views of this wooded area with the Cotswold National Landscape AONB forming a backdrop to the north and east of the area.

The fields surrounding Saltford have been farmed and therefore remained undeveloped for centuries, with archaeological evidence of Roman and Bronze Age farming activity. Many small quarries, from which the stone for Saltford’s older houses, their garden walls and the field walls was extracted, have now been filled in. The arrival of the golf course in 1905 and its managed parkland containing many established trees, largely complement the landscape by connecting the two woodlands.

This wooded and open farmland area provides the rural setting for the south side of Saltford, largely masking the housing settlement of the village itself when viewing the wider landscape from south to north and northeast. That landscape vista includes as a backdrop the Cotswolds AONB incorporating Kelston Tump (aka Kelston Roundhill) and the Cotswold ridge.

The fields and meadows in north Saltford are of particular importance for providing the landscape setting for Saltford’s Conservation Area. Three medieval fishponds linked by a stream (the top pond is known locally as Watercress Pond or Park Pond) are located to the northeast of Saltford Manor and St Mary’s Church. Saltford Manor, built in the 12th Century, is reputed to be the oldest continuously occupied private house in England; the ponds are thought to have been originally part of the Manor House estate for providing mainly coarse fish as a food source.

St Mary’s Church, next door to the Manor House, was first constructed in early Norman times. However, the base of the tower is thought to be late Anglo-Saxon period; the Anglo Saxons would almost certainly have recycled cut stone from Roman buildings in the locality to build the tower. The countryside setting of St Mary’s including that of St Mary’s churchyard that includes a memorial garden, together with this historic and attractive building provides a peaceful and contemplative place that is of particular importance and long-held value to the local community.

The Brass Mill in The Shallows at the southern end of the Conservation Area is a scheduled monument. It was referenced as a mill in the 1086 Domesday Book entry for Saltford and worked brass from 1721 to 1925. Maintained by volunteers, Saltford Brass Mill is open to the public on two Saturdays a month as publicised during the warmer months.

Geology

Saltford has a fascinating geological history with Lower Jurassic limestones and shales seen across ploughed fields and in old quarries, most of which have been filled in. The Liassic limestones were used in many of the older houses in the village and in some field walls and they contain abundant fossils.  These provide evidence that this region was once under a warm, shallow, sub-tropical sea, 180 to 200 million years ago. Some limestone exposures in Saltford are extremely important in our understanding of local and regional geology and have been protected as Regionally Important Geological Sites (RIGS).

The GWR, the former Midland Railway Path and the River Avon provide some of the best exposures of these rocks anywhere in the West of England. These RIGS sites include:

   1. Avon Lane Railway Path Cutting

   2. Mead Lane Saltford

   3. Saltford Railway GWR Cutting (north west of tunnel)

   4. Saltford Railway GWR Cutting (south east of tunnel)

   5. Avon Farm storm water cutting (listed as Stidham Farm but on Avon Farm’s land)

Limestones of two ages are exposed in and around Saltford: the While Lias (Upper Triassic/ Rhaetic) and the Blue Lias (Lower Jurassic). Blue Lias comprises decimetre (10 cm) scale alternations of muddy limestone containing shales and mudstones (hardened mud). Blue Lias is useful as a building stone, and as a source of lime for making mortar. It is famous for its fossils, especially ammonites, and the blue-grey colour arises from its iron content. The White Lias is a finer grained, thinly bedded pale yellow to white limestone almost devoid of fossils, and is only seen (exposed) in the railway cutting near Tennant’s Wood (just in the neighbouring parish boundary of Kelston) yet has been used as a building stone in Saltford.

Around Saltford there are few natural rock exposures, most present-day outcrops being man-made. These include the railway cutting on the Bath to Bristol GWR railway line, some cuttings and a new exposure along the Bristol to Bath railway path, and the cliff section in the gardens along Mead Lane, which may be an old quarry. Most of the small quarries, from which the stone for Saltford’s older houses, their garden walls and the field walls was extracted, have now been filled in.

Gravel deposits of a much younger age occur in and adjacent to the Avon Valley and accumulated here during the last ice age that ended 11-12,000 years ago in the Pleistocene Period. One gravel deposit, near Avon Farm has national legal protection as a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI).

Wildlife, Habitat and Geology

Outside the housing area Saltford’s landscape is predominantly open farmland but the rich mix of habitat features within gives a corresponding richness of wildlife.

In addition to several copses on the north side of Saltford, on the south side there are two long-standing woodland areas of woodland. Folly Wood, to the east of Saltford golf course and designated by Natural England as an Ancient Woodland and classified as a Site of Nature Conservation Interest (SNCI). Longwood, the long-established woodland to the west of the golf course alongside Longwood Lane. Folly Wood and Longwood are the only mature woodlands in Saltford. These provide valuable wildlife habitat and are greatly valued by the local community.

These two established woodlands are connected by a mixed tree, drystone wall and hedge line along the southern edge of the golf course. That acts as a wildlife corridor whilst within the golf course are many areas of wildflower-rich rough grassland.

The land to the north side of Saltford is rather different in ecological character from that to the south. To the north, field boundaries include many ancient hedges, a few drystone walls and many fences with rough herbage. All provide rich invertebrate habitat within the farmed landscape, especially where they run beside ditches. A high proportion of hedges in this area is cut infrequently, so have grown tall and wide, and many have uncultivated strips beside them. However, mature hedgerow trees are rather scarce, having formerly comprised mainly elms. The high wildlife value for invertebrates of Saltford’s ancient dry-stone walls, there are many on the south side of Saltford, most of which are incorporated within field boundaries and have an accompanying strip on each side of uncultivated field margin, is noteworthy and represents an important ecological asset that should be retained, rehabilitated and expanded, not lost, in the ecological emergency.

The medieval fishponds northeast of Saltford Manor and St Mary’s Church have become overshaded in recent decades, but the top pond was rehabilitated a few years ago and now supports large numbers and a high diversity of dragonflies. This is likely to be true also of other insect groups with aquatic larvae and sun-loving adults. Several substantial farmland ponds survive as do small and ever decreasing areas of wildflower-rich semi-improved grassland. Fields to the north of Saltford include a mix of arable and pasture in contrast to the south, which is almost entirely arable. Areas of wildflower rich grassland have declined greatly over the last 60 years reflecting both natural succession to woody vegetation, and tree-planting, making the small areas that remain of particular importance.

The River Avon that forms much of the eastern and northern border of the Parish of Saltford is itself designated as a Site of Nature Conservation Interest (SNCI) on the basis of its running water and associated marginal habitats particularly the remaining unshaded stretches with rich emergent growth of graminoids, and the shallows formed from cow-dips. In areas away from roads and not shaded by trees the banks themselves support lush, diverse, largely native herbaceous vegetation.

The river provides both an important wildlife habitat itself and a key wildlife corridor. The waterway has “a critical role for bat species, including the rare Horseshoe bats (greater and lesser). The dark and well vegetated and natural banksides and green tunnelling on towpaths in particular provide good foraging habitats and movement corridors from roosts out to the wider countryside and key foraging habitats” (Note: Quoted source is ‘WaterSpace’, Design Guidance Protecting bats in waterside development, B&NES Council June 2018). The Otter is now firmly re-established along the river.

Similarly, the vegetation lined-GWR railway line and the tree-lined Sustrans Bristol and Bath railway path that pass through the northern side of Saltford’s landscape provide important ecological and wildlife habitat. Furthermore, the absence of artificial lighting in this area is beneficial, not just for the enjoyment of dark skies, but is important for local wildlife including bats and Glow-Worms that are in decline nationally, but still evident in Saltford in the areas of species-rich grass not yet invaded by trees.

The flora has diminished greatly over the last 75 years but retains several native species of restricted distribution in Britain, notably ‘Bath Asparagus’ (Spiked Star-of-Bethlehem), Greater Dodder, Narrow-leaved Everlasting Pea and Loddon Pondweed. Riverside fields have over the years recorded many transitory species from seeds left during floods. These include many non-native species but occasionally much-declined natives such as Common Meadow-rue.

The new wetland scrape created at Wessex Water’s Sewage Treatment Works at Mead Lane during 2023 has the potential to provide valuable wildlife habitat that previously existed in the Avon Valley but has been lost due to changes in land use.

As an indicator of the landscape’s value for observing wildlife, about 110-120 species of birds are typically recorded annually in this mix of habitats. 20 out of the 69 national red list bird species of conservation concern and 33 out of the 103 amber list species are regularly observed.

The red list species regularly observed in Saltford include Corn Bunting, Greenfinch, House Martin, Lapwing, Merlin, Mistle Thrush, Skylark, Spotted Flycatcher, Swift, Woodcock and Yellowhammer. Amber list species regularly observed include Common Sandpiper, Kestrel, Sedge Warbler, Song Thrush, Snipe, Sparrowhawk, Tawny Owl, Teal, Wigeon, Willow Warbler, and Wren. Examples of other bird species regularly observed in Saltford’s Green Belt that contribute to how the community experiences nature include Barn Owl, Buzzard, Golden Plover, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Great White Egret, Grey Heron, Kingfisher, Little Owl, Peregrine, and Red Kite. (Note: The full list of birds known to occur regularly in Saltford can be found at www.saltfordenvironmentgroup.org.uk/wildlife.html).

Most of the butterflies of the wider countryside of southern England (as categorised by Butterfly Conservation) occur in Saltford’s landscape, including White-letter and Purple Hairstreaks. Presently 26 species of butterfly occur, with two others having gone locally extinct since the 1980s. Twenty species of dragonfly are resident, with several others visiting occasionally. Other invertebrates are less well known, but the localised Rufous Grasshopper occurs and other species of invertebrate with only patchy distributions in southern England are likely to occur too.

According to the “State of Nature” report (September 2023), produced by a collaboration between conservation and research organisations, the UK is one of the most nature depleted countries worldwide with the abundance of 753 terrestrial and freshwater species having on average fallen by 19% across the UK since 1970. The report states that in protected areas on land, there is some evidence that target species or species of conservation concern have more positive trends than outside them.

The ecological and climate emergencies highlight the importance of protecting the countryside and Green Belt landscapes from development and to enhance, not diminish, the variety of wildlife habitats they contain.

Recreation (Health and Wellbeing)

In addition to the golf club (established in 1905) on the south side of Saltford, another important recreational aspect of Saltford’s Green Belt landscape is the sports ground used principally for football and cricket by Saltford Hall on the north side of Saltford. The tranquil and beautiful setting of the sports ground makes Saltford a great location to compete in sports for visiting football and cricket teams and their supporters. Likewise, the Bristol Avon Sailing Club in Mead Lane, and Avon Rowing Club to the east of the village that was the first venue for the Bath Regatta in 1849, owe much of their success and long-term popularity to their rural countryside settings.

Longwood Lane and Manor Road on the south side of Saltford are part of the B&NES Strategic National Cycling Network and also of the circular route around Bristol, the 85-mile Avon Cycle Way route 410, that leads down to the Bristol and Bath Railway Path on the northeast side of Saltford. The Saltford south part of this regularly used cycling route provides extensive views across Saltford’s open landscape with the Kelston Tump and the Cotswolds ridge providing a familiar backdrop enjoyed by cyclists and walkers alike.

The south side of Saltford’s landscape setting contains PROW footpaths and several permissive footpaths/bridleways that have been in use for many decades; some are shown on the 1883/4 OS map of Saltford.  As a clear example of how the local community values and uses those footpaths, since 2015 after Defra withdrew funding support to landowners, members of the community have annually raised funds via voluntary donations to pay the landowner each year for continued access to the landscape through the use of those permissive paths.

The matrix of PROW footpaths on the southern side of Saltford’s landscape are also in regular use by residents and visitors for their health and well-being, including many dog walkers too. Photographers, ornithologists and other observers of wildlife and the landscape frequent Saltford’s footpaths and lanes. These footpaths include the River Avon Trail created in 2004 that is managed by the Avon Frome Partnership. The Trail runs from Pill in North Somerset to Pulteney Bridge, Bath in England’s west country. It is a medium-distance path of about 23 miles enjoyed by walkers, and in some sections, cyclists and horse riders. The Saltford section of the trail provides a particularly rural and peaceful element for this important local and regional recreational resource.

Saltford Environment Group has produced 9 popular “Walks of Saltford” online guides, local geologist have produced a “Walking through Saltford’s Geological Past” guide whilst self-guided walk guides by other organisations that incorporate Saltford include the River Avon Trail, the Two Brass Mills Circular Walk, and the Cotswolds enterprise walk.

(Ref: https://www.saltfordenvironmentgroup.org.uk/history/history011.html)

Planning Policy Context

The National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF, December 2023) provides the relevant protection and enhancement for landscapes such as Saltford’s:

180. Planning policies and decisions should contribute to and enhance the natural and local environment by:

a) protecting and enhancing valued landscapes, sites of biodiversity or geological value and soils (in a manner commensurate with their statutory status or identified quality in the development plan);

b) recognising the intrinsic character and beauty of the countryside, and the wider benefits from natural capital and ecosystem services – including the economic and other benefits of the best and most versatile agricultural land, and of trees and woodland; and

d) minimising impacts on and providing net gains for biodiversity, including by establishing coherent ecological networks that are more resilient to current and future pressures.

Saltford is classified as a “Rural Area RA1 village” in the B&NES Placemaking Plan 2017, i.e., development will be acceptable within and adjoining the housing development boundary on land outside the Green Belt. But that classification does not describe the value or protect the landscape setting in which the village is situated.

B&NES Council’s 2017 Placemaking Plan Policy NE2A (“Landscape Setting of Settlements”) states that “Any development should seek to conserve and enhance the landscape setting of settlements and their landscape character, views and features. Development that would result in adverse impact to the landscape setting of settlements that cannot be adequately mitigated will not be permitted.”

The 2021 landscape character assessment report prepared for the B&NES Local Plan Partial Update (LPPU) by Land Use Consultants Ltd, described the protection from development afforded to the north side of Saltford (i.e. the area north of the Bath Road A4) and located in the Avon Valley. Those protections are the Conservation Area, Stidham Farm geological SSSI (west of Avon Farm), the RIGS Lias Limestone exposure in Mead Lane, and SNCIs (the course of the River Avon, some minor watercourses and the route of the Bristol and Bath Railway Path) as well as listed buildings including the Grade II listed Saltford Manor and the Old Brassmill. The Saltford North area outside Salford’s housing boundary is in the Green Belt (as is Saltford South) and most of the area is immediately adjacent to the Cotswold National Landscape AONB located on the Kelston side of the River Avon.

Planning restriction considerations for the north Saltford area include the need to protect the River Avon’s floodplain from inappropriate development due to future increased fluvial flooding resulting from increased rainfall events associated with climate change as predicted by the Environment Agency4, the need to safeguard the Civil Aviation Authority’s licensed Saltford Airfield under the “Airfield Safeguarding” requirements as set out by the General Aviation Awareness Council for the CAA, and the archaeologically important Anglo Saxon Burial Ground situated north of Avon Farm.

4 “Managing Flood Risk” – Bristol Avon Catchment Flood Management Plan, Environment Agency, June 2012

The AGLV designation was established under the Town and Country Planning Act 1947 and has been used by LPAs to provide protection to locally valued landscapes from development that would be detrimental to those landscapes. The main objective of AGLVs is conservation and enhancement of their landscape quality and individual character, and to safeguard their valued features. These usually sit outside of an AONB but can share a common border. An AGLV can be particularly sensitive to development.  A proposed new development within or near an AGLV, for example, should be required by the LPA to demonstrate that it does not have a detrimental effect on the area or settlement(s) concerned.

B&NES Council, the Local Planning Authority for the area of North East Somerset that includes Saltford, does not use the Area of Great Landscape Value (AGLV) designation in its Local Plan, whereas some LPAs do. Instead, it uses its own NE2a (Landscape Setting of Settlements) designation for some areas of Saltford’s landscape (see map on page 1).

Other documents from Saltford Parish Council relevant to this policy and character appraisal paper include the Parish Council’s “AGLV or LGS for Saltford South – Case Paper (January 2023)” and the “Landscape Designation for Saltford South: Reaffirmation of application with outcome options (January 2024)”. Those were produced in connection with the formal request by the Parish Council in January 2023 to B&NES Council during early discussions on the draft Local Plan (2022-2042). A planning policy reason was not forthcoming from B&NES Council for its decision not to use AGLV for Saltford or extend its NE2A (Landscape Setting of Settlements) designation to cover all of the south side of Saltford at that time. B&NES Council made reference to the 2017 Placemaking Plan when landscape designations were last assessed in the Bath and North East Somerset Area, and was reluctant to re-visit the landscape designations in Bath and North East Somerset, despite the formal detailed request from Saltford Parish Council.

However, since 2017 the loss of parcels of open landscape to new or forthcoming developments between Keynsham and Saltford, for example the Hygge Park, Withies Green, and Pixash Lane Recycling Centre expansion developments, means that the remaining green open landscape and in particular the Green Belt surrounding Saltford has become of even greater value to the local community and to wildlife. Its value has been increased greatly since 2017, not diminished.

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