The Countryside Agency has changed as the result of the Natural Environment and Rural Communities Act, which received Royal Assent in March 2006. The Act included the formation of a single new body – Natural England – the bringing together of the Landscape, Access and Recreation division of the Countryside Agency with English Nature and most of Defra’s Rural Development Service (RDS). Natural England will work for people, places and nature, with responsibility for enhancing biodiversity, landscapes and wildlife in rural, urban, coastal and marine areas; promoting access, recreation and public well-being, and contributing to the way natural resources are managed – so that they can be enjoyed now and by future generations.
These changes came into effect on 2 October 2006, at which point the Countryside Agency ceased to exist.
We may be changing, but our skills, knowledge and enthusiasm will continue to benefit people in rural England.
Further information on the Act is available through the Defra website.