The Solent Forum

Working in partnership for the future

Local Nature Recovery Strategies: A Focus on the Solent

What are Local Nature Recovery Strategies (LNRS)?

Responsible Authorities have been appointed by Defra to develop Local Nature Recovery Strategies (LNRS); this includes Hampshire County Council (responsible for Hampshire including Southampton and Portsmouth) and the Isle of Wight Council.

Introduced by the Environment Act 2021, LNRS’ are a new system of plans for nature recovery covering the whole of England. They are a key mechanism for planning and delivering the National Nature Recovery Network and will consist of:

The first LNRS’ will be produced in 2024. They will intially focus on land (including the intertidal) however the responsible authorities wish to include the whole Solent to ensure that marine nature recovery is embedded into the strategies. It is anticipated that the Solent work will also feed into neighbouring LNRS’ including Dorset and Sussex. The intention in the Solent is also to cover those terrestrial habitats in the 'coastal zone of influence' such as saline lagoons, coastal grazing marsh and wader roosting and feeding sites.

What is Defra Statutory Guidance for Marine and Coast?

Coastal local nature recovery strategies will follow the relevant local authorities’ boundaries. This usually means extending into the inter tidal zone as far as low water, but can be further around river estuaries. Coastal responsible authorities should consider how to factor in neighbouring marine areas and plans in their strategies. Linking local nature recovery strategies and marine spatial planning would help to identify land management changes that could benefit the estuarine or marine zone. For example, by improving the quality of water leaving river systems or managing coastal erosion risks.

Stakeholder Engagement Workshop on Nature Recovery in the Solent (16 Jan 2024)

Engagement with local communities and stakeholders is a vital part of the process for successful nature recovery. The responsible authorities will be undertaking a series of workshops on a wide range of themes with key stakeholders, landowners, and community groups. One of these was a Solent workshop which was held on 16 January 2024 to cover coast and marine. This workshop was coordinated and delivered by the Solent Forum in association with Hampshire County Council, Isle of Wight Council, Natural England, Environment Agency and the Solent Seascape project.

The purpose of the workshop was to:

We will now be working with the Responsible Authorities to take these findings forward for preparing the first draft LNRS’, Solent stakeholders will be consulted on these in due course.

Solent LNRS workshop

Workshop Outputs

Workshop Report

Workshop Presentations:

Workshop Materials

Workshop Agenda

Workshop Materials to Facilitate Discussion

Sample Solent maps:

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The Solent Seascape Project is key to developing successful long term nature recovery in the Solent

The Solent Seascape Project is a partnership aiming to reconnect the Solent into a functioning and productive ecosystem for people, nature, and climate. It will bring together local stakeholders to develop and co-create a long-term seascape recovery plan that supports better management of existing Solent marine and coastal habitats. This piece of work will take place over the next few years.  It will form an integral part of nature recovery strategies for the Solent in the longer term, contributing to local priorities and delivering opportunities to improve nature.