The Oxfordshire Local Nature Partnership (OLNP) is an organisation of key partners working together to radically enhance nature, its positive impact on our climate and the priority it is given, helping to make Oxfordshire a county where people and nature thrive.
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Public awareness of the value of our natural environment and public knowledge of our need to restore nature has never been higher. The new Environment Act 2021 unlocks new tools and funding to empower counties to put nature’s recovery at the heart of their ambitions for the next decade and beyond. Oxfordshire is a thriving hub of environmental ambition with a cornucopia of NGOs, nature friendly farmers, sustainable landowners and business, AONBs, world renowned Universities and local authorities all driving forward plans to protect and enhance the natural world.
Wild Oxfordshire worked alongside partners to set up the OLNP. The OLNP is an exciting opportunity to bring together all these partners, to utilise new tools and funding, and to create an impactful partnership that is greater than the sum of its parts. The OLNP will work towards its purpose by developing strategies and plans; influencing relevant local and national government policy and legislation; establishing voluntary working groups and task and finish groups as required; levering resources into the sector; and through LNP members and others using the partnership’s outputs to guide their work and influence others.
How the LNP works
To do this, the OLNP harnesses the energy, enthusiasm and expertise of all relevant organisations across Oxfordshire. It has a strong collective voice and a passionate, knowledgeable board to make it heard. The board includes representatives from:
- Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty
The board is supported by an LNP Manager. Secretariat and communications support is provided from within the Partnership Services of the Local Authorities, in alignment with that provided for the Future Oxfordshire Partnership.
The wider expertise that exists throughout the county influences the work of the OLNP through the OLNP Forum, a broad stakeholder group that ensures the decisions of the board and actions of the LNP are fully informed by the views and experiences of OLNP members.
The LNP's Executive Group
The Board is also supported by the Executive Group, chaired by the LNP Manager. This group is attended by the chairs of the working groups and task and finish groups, which are formed around key workstreams and bring together relevant experts from among the LNP membership. Oxfordshire’s LNP is the key vehicle to target new resources, establish new strategies, build new connections and champion nature. Local Nature Recovery Strategies are soon to be required for each county, Biodiversity Net Gain funds are coming onstream, and there is unprecedented political and public support to restore nature. In a time of great change, this is our opportunity to pull together and form a leading organisation to radically enhance Oxfordshire’s natural environment. The Board will lead the partnership to maximise its impact and take full advantage of the new regulatory world.
“To radically enhance nature, its positive impact on our climate and the priority it is given, helping to make Oxfordshire an exemplar county for people and nature to thrive.”
Our Board Members
- Chair – Richard Benwell
- Local authorities – CllrDavid Rouane, Leader of South Oxfordshire District Council
- Universities – Prof David McDonald, Director of WildCRU, Oxford University
- Health – Rosie Rowe, Head of Healthy Place Shaping, Oxfordshire County Council
- DEFRA Family – Michelle Leek, Natural England
- NGO 1 – Prue Addison, BBOWT
- NGO 2 – Camilla Burrow, Wild Oxfordshire
- AONBs – Simon Smith, Cotswolds National Landscape (AONB)
- Farmers – James Price
- Landowners - vacant
- Business – Giles Brockbank (OxLEP Clean Growth working group)
- Landowners - vacant
- LNP Manager - Matt Whitney
"There is a real sense of optimism surrounding the LNP and Wild Oxfordshire, I relish this opportunity to work together for Oxfordshire’s nature and environment!"