East Devon National Landscape

The East Devon AONB is full of contrast and colour, diverse and rich in wildlife and home to approximately 21179 residents. Designated in 1963 and covering 268sq kms, it occupies one third of East Devon District, skirting Sidmouth, Seaton, Ottery St Mary and Honiton but encompassing Budleigh Salterton.

East Devon NL - Newton Pop Orchard Planting

Newton Pop Orchard Planting

With its dramatic cliffs, and a unique insight into 185 million years of earth history, the World Heritage Site ‘Jurassic’ coastline and South West Coast Path play an important role in the popularity of the AONB. This stunning coastline and attractive coastal villages that still retain their vernacular character and rural charm, bring significant economic benefit to the area.Further inland, the area is less well known and is best explored via the East Devon Way which traverses some 40miles through this highly varied landscape.

The large lowland heath of the ‘Pebblebeds’ dominates the western flank of the AONB and woodland cover is high, with plantations on the high plateau and ridges contrasting with steep-sided and intimate wooded coombes. The enclosed farmed landscape is predominantly pastoral, combined with copses and ancient wooded goyles and the open fertile river valleys of the rivers Axe, Otter and Sid. Tall Devon hedge-banks and narrow country lanes disguise the richness of the landscape to all but the most observant traveller.

The AONB built environment is characterised by hamlets and villages of local stone, with chert(flint) and pebblebed stone (“popple”) thatch and cob, reflecting the geology and traditional land use of the area. The much sought after Beer limestone helped build Exeter Cathedral and buildings across America. Evidence of man’s former activity is evident today in the form of nationally significant Bronze Age hill-barrow cemetery at Farway, several Iron Age hill-forts which dominate the high ground and numerous tumuli and former quarries.

*ONS 2021 Output Area population estimates on best fit analysis.

East Devon NL - Sidmouth


East Devon NL - AONB Tree Safari Shute

AONB Tree Safari Shute