Somerset County Council sale of land in the Quantock Hills

Somerset County Council has now made the decision to sell 3 parcels of land in the Quantock Hills; Over Stowey Custom Common, Thorncombe Hill and Great Wood.

In light of the public concern the leader of Somerset County Council, Ken Maddock, recently met with a number of local groups to discuss the potential effects of the land disposals.

There are 2 main areas of concern for the AONB Service.  These include a new owner not willing to enter into a new agri-environment scheme (the current one is due to end September 2012) which could be detrimental to the biodiversity in the area, and  secondly an increase in the permitted use of motor vehicles  which would cause damage to the sensitive habitats. Somerset County Council has responded to say it will consider covenants on any sale which will cover these concerns.

We are aware that Somerset County Council has open negotiations with the Forestry Commission regarding the freehold of Great Wood (approx 600Ha) which FC currently lease on a 999 year lease. The AONB Service is not adverse to the FC taking over ownership as their aims and objectives are largely in line with the statutory Quantock Hills AONB Management Plan and they have effectively been managing the site for the past 80 years. The AONB Service does not object to Somerset County Councils plans to dispose of these land holdings as long as they are protected into the future. We believe that Somerset County Council are now considering mechanisms which will ensure this protection whoever the owners of the land maybe in the future.

Download our full letter to SCC in response to the sale of land by clicking here

Download SCC's public notice by clicking here

Find out the Quantock Hills AONB Service position on the disposal of land by SCC by clicking here


If you have any queries please contact SCC Property Services on Tel: 01823 355325

Katy Coate - January 2012


Stay in the loop

Annual Reports

View Annual reports from the Quantock AONB Service

Greater Quantock Landscape Development Fund

The Quantock Hills AONB Service now has a Greater Quantock Landscape Development Fund providing grants of up to £20,000 to local communities, farmers, landowners and individuals. The fund has been provided by EDF Energy and is part of the mitigation measures associated with the Hinkley Point C development.

Information leaflets

Find out more about the geology of the Quantock Hills AONB, why the heathland is so important for birds, the red deer on the Quantocks and why the history of the landscape is so special.

Other organisations and activities in the Quantocks

A few things you might find interesting from organisations we work with in the Quantocks

Photography Competition Entry Form

Please down load and return with your fabulous entries

Policys and Codes of Conduct

Everyone enjoys spending their time on the hills doing different activities. Below are some guidance and policy documents to ensure they are carried out safely and that wider regulations are followed.

Quantock Deer Count Results

Annual deer count results for 2010 to 2017

Quantock Hills and Planning

Downloadable documents for you to better understand the Quantock AONB and planning processes

Quantock Hills Joint Advisory Committee (JAC) Papers 2014 - 2017

Papers from the partnership committee the Joint Advisory Committee

Quantock Hills Management Plan 2014 - 2019

This is the the Quantock Hills Management Plan 2014 - 2019. It will guide work carried out to protect and enhance the Quantock Hills by the AONB team and all our partners. It has been agreed by the Secretary of State for the Environment and adopted by Somerset County Council, West Somerset Council, Sedgemoor District Council and Taunton Deane Borough Council.

Quantock Hills Visitor Guide

Quantock Hills Visitor Guide

Recreation Leaflets

a full range of leaflets from circular walks to event guides and leaflets to allow you to enjoy the best of the hills

Terms and Conditions for Quantock Hills Facebook page

Terms and Conditions for

Tick Leaflet

Ticks are becoming more common and a bite from this spider-like parasite could lead to Lyme Disease. This is a treatable infection caused by bacterium transmitted by ticks when they bite. Not every tick carries Lyme Disease and it is important to realise that the disease is relatively rare.


Useful Contacts

Quantock AONB Service
Tel: 01823 451 884

Somerset Wildlife Trust
Tel: 01823 652 400

National Trust
Tel: 01823 451 814

Forestry Commission
Tel: 01278 732 319