Landscape in the Lake District (creative commons)

Welcome to the spring newsletter. I have chosen the word Landscape to summarise the articles in this edition.

Landscape as a word sums up perfectly the approach and topic chosen by many of the authors. Landscapes represent a whole or holistic view, but the word is also difficult to understand as it means different things for different people. The linear way of thinking we have grown up with, being the cause of so many issues we now face.

The Ecosystem Knowledge Network appears to have understood the language of landscape very well and their Tool Assessor and informative website have a lot to offer. Most of us will be familiar with the rewilding movement and we are lucky to have Rewilding director Helen Meech talk through the next steps for changing policy and moving forward. For rewilding, society involvement is recognised as critical, as it also is for the Woodland Trust's new Charter, the details of which will be informed entirely by the value UK citizens impart using "tree stories". As ever, ecosystem services have been a topic of many events this year. The annual ialeUK conference and a one-day event aimed at landscape architects is summarised in this edition. Looking ahead, there seems to be more cross-over between different disciplines as shown by the huge potential of entomolgy work to inform landscape design of cities.  

Last year’s ialeUK conference on landscape characterisation delved into the language and meaning of landscape. One slide gave some pertinent statements which described landscape as:

  • Landscape is experienced from within as a constant emergent perceptual and material milieu  (Wylie 2007);
  • Meanings grow, diminish and shift under the influence of observation, experience, memory, appreciation, persuasion, affection and emotion;
  • Landscape is always in process, potentially conflicted, untidy and uneasy (Bender 2001) and conditional, contestable and mutable.

Hope you enjoy the articles in this newsletter - and as always please get in touch if you have any suggestions to