Design Guide and Colour Study

Our award-winning design tools were developed in partnership with our 15 local authority partners and expert consultants.

The High Weald Design Guide and Colour Study provide clear and consistent guidance on best practice for building in the AONB – from how the site connects to the surrounding landscape to which materials and colours to use.

The tools are aimed at everyone involved the built environment  of the High Weald AONB, from designers, developers and highways engineers through to planning decision-makers.

They are also useful resources for groups working on Neighbourhood Plans.

High Weald Design Guide

The High Weald Housing Design Guide supports the objectives of High Weald AONB Management Plan, giving practical, clear advice on expectations for new housing development within the High Weald AONB in order to provide a concise and easy to access resource for designers and decision makers.

Packed with real-life examples and high-quality images, the guide is designed to help ensure higher-quality and landscape-led design that reflects the special character of the High Weald landscape and is embedded with a true ‘sense of place’, without stifling innovation and creativity.

It will also help ensure that new housing development meets the National Planning Policy Framework for well-designed places and the conservation and enhancement of the AONB.

Importantly, the Guide is not solely focused on the appearance or style of individual buildings, but rather about creating successful places; housing developments that are truly ‘of the place’, a genuine and integrated part of the existing settlement, rather than a generic ‘added on’ estate.

It is expected that developers and designers of new housing schemes will use the Housing Design Guide at the earliest stages of the design process; the format is intended to help structure the design process, so that the setting of the High Weald is dealt with first, placemaking principles next, and detailed design built in towards the end.

Supporting documents can be found in our publications library.

Front cover of the High Weald Housing Design Guide

High Weald Colour Study

This study documents the existing colours in the High Weald AONB landscape and provides advice on what colours can be used in new development to help to integrate it into the landscape successfully.

This includes practical advice on different materials and suppliers in order to:

  • inform development proposals at an early stage in their design process, and;
  • assist local planning authorities in assessing choice of colour and materials in the determination of planning applications.
Front cover of the High Weald Colour Study guidance