National Character Area profiles: information for local decision making

Use National Character Area profiles to find descriptions, facts and data about the different landscapes of England.

Applies to England

National Character Areas (NCAs) divide England into 159 distinct areas. Each is defined by a unique combination of:

  • landscape
  • biodiversity
  • geodiversity
  • history
  • cultural and economic activity

NCA boundaries follow natural lines in the landscape, not county or district boundaries.  

Visit the National Character Areas website to find interactive profiles that outline and describe each of the NCAs.

Information in the NCA profiles 

Information contained within each profile includes: 

  • facts, data and interactive maps 
  • a description of the landscape, including its key characteristics and how the area has changed over time 
  • an overview of the NCA’s natural capital (the benefits of the area to society)  
  • statements of environmental opportunity – setting out how the landscape could be managed for the future 

How NCA profiles can be used

The information and evidence in the profiles can: 

  • help people to make decisions about the places that they live in and care for 
  • guide actions to achieve nature recovery, including through local nature recovery strategies 
  • support the planning of large scale conservation projects and the design of land management schemes 
  • inform choices about landscape change 
  • encourage partnership working towards a common vision 

You can read older NCA profiles on Natural England’s Access to Evidence website.

Updates to this page

Published 14 May 2024

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