New AONB for Wales

The first new protected rural area in Wales for 26 years has been introduced, the Welsh planning and environment minister announced yesterday.

John Griffiths said that an area of approximately 230 square kilometres in Wrexham and Denbighshire have been designated as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB).

It is the first time that an AONB has been designated by the Welsh government instead of by Westminster and the first new AONB in the principality for 26 years.

Griffiths said: "The natural environment is crucial to the Welsh economy and it is vital it is protected and managed as effectively and efficiently as possible to ensure the best outcomes for Wales. AONB status for this area will help safeguard its natural beauty and promote sustainable development."

He added "The AONB ‘brand’ may also help to draw in an increased number of tourists to enjoy the area’s natural beauty."

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