Profile Of Scilly Highlights Elm Trees And Rising Sea Levels

tresco from aboveThe challenges faced by rising sea levels and valuing our rare elm trees are two of the areas discussed in a new profile of Scilly.

The so-called National Character Area profile is produced by Natural England, the organisation that advises the government on the environment.

The main author, David Appleton, says it’s the latest of 159 similar documents that divide up the country based on a unique pattern of geology, history and features of the natural landscape.

And he hopes private businesses and public sector organisations like the AONB and Wildlife Trust will use it to help decide the activities they undertake on their patch.

The profile describes Scilly as a “strikingly diverse” landscape with one of the highest density of archaeological remains in Europe. But it says some of these sites are at risk from erosion and neglect.

There are comments on areas like water quality and opportunities to produce more high quality food on the islands.

From Radio Scilly

David Appleton from Natural England discusses the new Character Area Profile for Scilly

But any growth in tourism needs to take into consideration the landscape that brings people here in the first place.

The report also highlights the challenges faced by low-lying Hugh Town if sea levels rise and how that needs to be managed.

David says the information has been drawn together from historical studies as well as through speaking to representatives from local wildlife and environment groups.

Natural England doesn’t make any recommendations and David says his organisation can’t sort out the challenges.

But he hopes the profile will start a discussion.

It’s likely to be used by our AONB as they start to draw up a new management plan for the area through to the end of the decade.

The Character Area Profile for Scilly is available on natural England’s website here.