Staff Unit

The work of the AONB Partnership is supported by the employment of a small AONB Staff Unit, which is based at Charterhouse Centre. The work of the unit is guided by national AONB Core Functions

The primary purpose of the AONB Staff Unit is:

  • To provide a strategic, independent unit dedicated to the conservation and enhancement of the Mendip Hills AONB.
  • To co-ordinate and drive the implementation of the AONB Management Plan.

The Unit comprises:
AONB Manager Jim Hardcastle
AONB Project Development Officer Andy Mallender
AONB Planning Liaison Officer Cindy Carter (Mon/Tues, Part-Time)
AONB Volunteer Coordinator (Tues/Wed) Sammy Fraser (Part-Time)
AONB Communications and Support Officer Sarah Catling (Mon-Thurs, Part-Time)

Core Functions

a) Developing reviewing, preparing and publishing the AONB vision and the AONB Management Plan

b) Raising awareness of the AONB, and promoting the AONB vision and the management plan to help distinguish the AONB from adjacent countryside

c) Advising upon, facilitating and co-ordinating implementation by others of the Management Plan

d) Advising Local Authorities on their activities within  AONBs, to encourage them to go beyond normal levels of service to attain the highest possible standards in countryside management

e) Monitoring and reporting on progress against AONB Management Plan targets

f) Monitoring AONB landscape condition

g) Accessing resources for management activities

h) Working with and contributing to the NAAONB activities. Participating in and promoting joint working between AONBs and across protected landscapes family.

i) Providing a management role to co-ordinate AONB protection through the actions of the AONB unit, the AONB partnership and other partners at a local and strategic level.

j) Developing an involvement by the community in the management of the AONB

k)  Providing  landscape related planning advice