The Surrey Hills AONB Board offers guidance in the following areas;

Country Lanes

Narrow, winding country lanes are a characteristic feature of the Surrey Hills Area of Outstanding Beauty (AONB). They can be of considerable biodiversity as well as historic value. The aims for country lanes are to:

  • protect and enhance their rural and historic character
  • discourage through traffic and inappropriate use by HGV’s
  • reduce traffic speeds and make lanes safer, quieter and more accessible for pedestrians, cyclists and equestrians

Download our Environmental Design Guidance.

Building Design

The AONB Board aims to encourage greater attention to the design of development within the Surrey Hills to ensure that its future as an AONB is not prejudiced. Sustaining landscape quality will be much easier if new developments respect the natural and built characteristics that exist already.

If you would like to discuss any element of building design in the Surrey Hills, please contact the Surrey Hills Planning advisor;

Village and Directional Signage

Signage plays a vital part in reinforcing the message that drivers are entering a rural area. Village signs work very effectively to show that a particular village is within the Surrey Hills boundary and help to re-inforce the rural character of a village. The Surrey Hills Board work in partnership with Parish Councils to produce village signs. These signs work very effectively to show that a particular village is within the Surrey Hills boundary and help to re-inforce the rural character of a village.

Surrey Hills directional finger posts are designed using natural materials with the Surrey Hills trademark branded into the top. These directional posts help to reinforce that you are in a rural area.

If you are interested in village or directional finger posts please contact us for further details;

Download our Environmental Design Guidance.

Removal of Unnecessary Signage

Removal of unnecessary signage or de-cluttering is the process of removing unnecessary roadside and village signage clutter in the Surrey Hills.

Why De-Clutter?

  • Trying to promote and reinforce the rural character in Quiet Lane areas
  • Discourage through traffic and HGV movements
  • Reduce maintenance and replacement costs of signs

Examples of De-cluttering

Before & after of a de-cluttering project in Albury


Get involved with De-Cluttering in the Surrey Hills

We welcome local knowledge when it comes to de-cluttering, here are four simple steps to removing clutter in your area;

1. What to look for:

Many road signs are not mandatory. They are put in place by the local highway authority and can be removed at its discretion. We want to encourage local people through their parish council to assess their local road signs and recommend any individual signs should be removed or relocated.

Download our information sheet which lists signs that could be removed.

2. Fill in 2 simple forms

2.1 Survey Form

Download the Survey Form.

Download an example of how to fill out the Survey Form.

2.2 Decision Form

Download the Decision Form.

Download an example of how to fill out the Decision Form.

3. Surrey County Council Highways check and agree

Surrey County Council’s highways department have a standard procedure to check the road safety aspects of the parish council’s recommendation and make the final decision.

Who to contact

The responsible Surrey CC officers are;

North West Area (Woking, Runnymede and Surrey Heath): Andrew Milne,

North East Area (Epsom and Ewell, Elmbridge and Spelthorne): Nick Healey,

South West Area (Guildford and Waverley): Frank Apicella,

South East Area (Reigate & Banstead, Mole Valley and Tandridge): Zena Curry,

4. Arrange for the clutter to be removed


Parish Council carries out the work itself with a landscape contractor. Please note that they will need Public Liability insurance to cover working on the highway. The pilot project has demonstrated the benefits of volunteers assisting with their local knowledge. All volunteers will require a high visibility jacket, steel capped boots and need to work in pairs.


Parish Council could engage Surrey County Council approved contractor. Please contact SCC relevant contact above.

Be Nice Say Hi

The Surrey Hills AONB Board signs up to the consideration and courtesy awareness message of ‘Be Nice, Say Hi’. Established by charities, Cycling UK and the British Horse Society the aim is to raise awareness of shared access in the Surrey Hills landscape and respect the rights of all users.

For further guidance take a look at this information video.

Or download an instructional leaflet here.