Our City Downland Estate Plan

Our rural estate is in the South Down National park and consists of approximately 13,500 acres.

We acquired the land in the late 19th and early 20th century. It was important for protecting the town’s water supply and controlling development.

The Downland Estate is a biosphere reserve and home to a large farming community. It is also an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

Our role is to protect and enhance the land for future generations. We recognise the estate's ability to:

  • reduce the amount of carbon in the atmosphere and store it
  • enhance wildlife and their natural habitats
  • improve health and wellbeing, by providing public access to nature
  • provide an affordable and sustainable local food supply, through farmers, producers and community food-growing

We've worked with South Downs National Park Authority (SDNPA), residents, farmers, environmental groups and recreational users to produce the City Downland Estate Plan.

The plan sets out our aims, objectives and vision for the future of Downland Estate over the next 100 years. This includes

  • all council owned land within the South Downs National Park
  • the Agricultural Estate
  • parks and land used for leisure, sport and recreation

We aim to raise awareness of the Downland and reflect the values, hopes and ideas of those who use it. We'll do this by creating new amenities and opening up more land to the public, making it easier for all to visit and enjoy.

The plan also links into the council’s carbon neutral and climate change targets.

The Policy & Resources Committee approved the plan in December 2022. Members of the SDNPA endorsed the Whole Estate Plan in February 2023.

Read and download the City Downland Estate plan