The Solent Forum

Working in partnership for the future

Nature Recovery Strategies

Local Nature Recovery Strategies (LNRS) are a flagship measure in the Environment Bill. They will consist of:

The strategies will be a statutory requirement of the upcoming Environment Bill. This means that local councils will be required to develop one when the Bill becomes law. Councils will then have to report on progress on the LNRS every five years.

Cornwall, Buckinghamshire, Greater Manchester, Northumberland and Cumbria local authorities were selected by the government in August 2020 to receive a share of £1 million of funding to set up ‘Local Nature Recovery Strategies’ (LNRS) pilot studies.

The Hampshire Biodiversity Information Centre (HBIC) was contracted by Natural England in 2015 to produce a detailed Ecological Network Map for Hampshire on behalf of the Local Nature Partnership (LNP). A draft was produced in 2016 and has since been road tested and updated to reflect changes in site designations and habitat mapping over the intervening period. A yearly update is recommended going forward. The map represents the hierarchy of international, national and locally designated sites of importance for biodiversity, plus other priority habitats and, importantly, areas identified for habitat restoration or creation.

The Wildlife Trusts have published a report that sets out what they believe a Nature Recovery Network should achieve, see: https://www.wildlifetrusts.org/nature-recovery-network.

A Strategic Approach for Intertidal and Marine Net Gain

There is a broad call for meaningful and strategic aspirations for the marine and intertidal space rather than just a metric. In 2021, ABPmer was commissioned by the Offshore Wind Energy and Change (OWEC) Marine Net Gain Task & Finish Group, which is working closely with Defra’s Offshore Wind Enabling Actions Programme (OWEAP), to conduct a survey amongst key stakeholders and develop recommendations for strategic targets for Marine Net. This work has led to an assumptions paper that describes a proposed approach looking at where intertidal/marine are failing and where there is a need to foster recovery, that it should be strategic and not piecemeal, should be large and ambitious, should not be constrained by boundaries and link with ELM and LNRPs. This work is being considered by Defra and further work is planned.

South East Nature Partnerships

In October, 2020 the South East Nature Partnerships adopted a series of principles (this will be reviewed as national guidance emerges). It makes the following statements regarding marine and coasts.

'The Natural Recovery Network for the South East will not be restricted to terrestrial habitats, but will also incorporate the many coastal habitats found along the shores of the region, many of which are increasingly fragmented and under threat. Whilst coastal squeeze may further threaten these habitats and constrain options for future habitat creation, much more can be done to identify how these habitats can be better protected, expanded and enhanced in the future. Thinking and policy on how to create a marine Nature Recovery Network is still evolving, but across the South East, the LNPs will work with marine conservation organisations to incorporate their ideas and ensure that the marine environment is reflected in the overall vision, mapping and design of Nature Recovery Networks across the South East'.

Local Nature Partnerships 

The Hampshire and Isle of Wight Local Nature Partnership (LNP) was established in 2012 and is one of 48 strategic local nature partnerships formed in England following publication of the 2011 Natural Environment White Paper. LNPs operate at the county scale.

The overall purpose of an LNP is to:


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