Kent Historic Landscape Characterisation (HLC)

Julian Munby, 2014

Data copyright © Kent County Council, Oxford Archaeology (South), Historic England unless otherwise stated

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Paul Cuming
Kent County Council
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ME14 1XQ

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Julian Munby (2014) Kent Historic Landscape Characterisation (HLC) [data-set]. York: Archaeology Data Service [distributor]

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Kent Historic Landscape Characterisation Map

Oxford Archaeological Unit (OAU) was commissioned in the winter of 1999 by Kent County Council (KCC) and English Heritage (EH) to undertake an Historic Landscape Characterisation of Kent, including the area presently covered by the unitary authority of Medway, but excluding the London Boroughs in the former county.

This assessment was designed to enhance the current landscape characterisation of Kent and forms part of English Heritage's programme of assistance to local authorities in the production of Historic Landscape Character Assessments.

The approach to this project is broadly based on the experience of completing a more intensive programme for Hampshire County Council. This had, in turn, drawn on earlier models created for Cornwall, Avon and the Cotswolds AONB (Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty). The datasets for these and other HLC projects can be found via the Historic Landscape Characterisation page.

The above projects were based on the conclusions and findings reached by the English Heritage Historic Landscape Research Project on approaches to Historic Landscape Assessment as carried out by OAU and Cobham Resource Consultants in 1993-4. This project forms part of the continuing process of Historic Landscape Characterisation currently being supported by English Heritage.

The primary aim of the Kent Historic Landscape Characterisation project was to produce a digital map of Kent's Historic Landscape Types with associated explanatory text, that would:

  • enhance the formulation of development plans, structural planning programmes, development control and conservation activities.
  • establish a framework, in conjunction with the complimentary county-wide landscape assessment, for future Historic Landscape Assessment and research activities within Kent.

A total of 87 Historic Landscape Types were defined and these were grouped into fourteen broad categories and used in the mapping. These are listed and explained in the Final Report, volumes 1 and 2, which can be accessed via the Downloads page.