Thriving, beautiful, prosperous and sustainable places, celebrated for their cultural and natural heritage, now and forever.
Press your fingers close on this lichened sandstone. With this stone and this grass, with this red earth, this place was received and made and remade. Its generations are distinct but all suddenly present.
Raymond Williams
People of the Black Mountains

Collaborating in place for a better future

Collaborative action focused on a range of spatial areas to co-produce responses to the nature, climate and economic crises. By 2028 we will have:
Resilient Places
Which are ecologically, economically and socially sustainable into the future providing good access to housing, employment and service provision to meet community needs. They are measurably less reliant on external supply chains for essentials as a result of the increase in local renewable energy generation; local food supply and opportunities for community ownership.
Prosperous Places
Which build on the special qualities of the National Park and our international designations celebrating culture, heritage, the natural environment and Welsh language.
Inspiring Places
Which build on the special qualities of the National Park and our international designations celebrating culture, heritage, the natural environment and Welsh language.
Well Planned Places
Where everyone feels a connection to their place and this provides benefits to people's health and well-being. Our places provide a high-quality built environment which provides our residents and visitors a safe place to meet, live, work, play and connect. Our businesses can thrive through connections to people, services and infrastructure.
Innovative Places
Where connected networks of active citizens collaborate with businesses and key organisations to innovate place-based solutions to place based challenges.
Historic Places
Where the cultural and historic environment is in good condition, valued, celebrated and better understood by residents and visitors alike. Where the synergy between the National Park’s landscape and our historic parks and gardens, historic farmsteads, rural cottages underpin our understanding and management of Place.
Central Places
Our historic market towns are reinvigorated to become vibrant and viable centres for the future.
Healthy Places
Where connection to our natural beauty provides healing, health and happiness. We serve and support a range of ‘green’ and social prescribing options for our community and beyond.
Beautiful Places
Where our natural beauty is conserved and where necessary restored, so that the majesty of our landscape can be valued and loved by all.
Nature Connected Places
Where everyday connections to a nature rich world are commonplace and valued.

Our Places

The Places of Bannau Brycheiniog span mountain ranges, or nestle into tiny hamlets. They are homes and communities, vast ecosystems providing water or clean air beyond their boundaries and road networks that connect people and places. Places shape who we are, what we do and how we feel. They impact every aspect of our lives. In the context of Y Bannau: The Future, our places can be loosely defined around four key groupings. For some of these groupings, there are long-established partnerships, and many of these have contributed their own pledges to delivering Y Bannau: The Future Missions and you will find more detail in the following chapter on Partners. In other areas, there are opportunities for new partnerships to form, and we look forward to seeing how these develop over the lifetime of this Plan. By 2028 we will have:
Expansive spatial areas that function together to create our natural beauty, our historic environment and functioning ecosystems. These landscapes may be based on an upland area such as the Black Mountain Partnership, or a river catchment, like the Usk Catchment Partnership. We focus on these places because of the essential connections between people and the environment, cultural heritage and nature with the aim of managing these interactions for mutual benefit.
Towns and Villages
Settlements where people live and work. These could be towns like Brecon or smaller more dispersed farming communities like Llanddeusant. We focus on these places because of the fundamental threats facing rural communities, with the aim of ensuring these communities can thrive for generations to come.
Honey Pot Places
Places that people love to visit. These places have some particular special qualities that make them attractive and can lead to detrimental levels of over-tourism. Places like our Waterfall Area. We focus on these places because of a need to manage the negative impacts from visitor pressure, turning this into a positive gain for communities and the local economy, while enabling a positive visitor experience.
Transport Corridors
The Park is host to some key transport corridors which have traditionally served as a means of moving private cars from A to B. Our focus on these places is to understand how sustainable transport solutions can help support communities, visitors and the local economy and the transition to net zero.

Holistic Place Plans

This mission is centred around co-creating and delivering holistic Place Plans with the communities of the National Park.

A Place Plan is a collaboration between local communities and statutory organisations, co-creating an evidence-based vision for the future and a plan of action. The exact areas of focus and intervention will be based on an understanding of the issues and opportunities of individual locations, but could include, for example, activities relating to:

  • Future food security e.g. creating local food supply chains, changes in land use
  • Future skills and jobs e.g. identifying training needs for skills for community resilience
  • Nature connectedness for preventative health provision including improving access to natural green spaces
  • Sustainable tourism e.g., creating sustainable access for tourism to pressured areas
  • Climate mitigation and adaptation e.g., community energy planning
  • Enhancing and protecting the built environment and its heritage
  • Supporting the local economy and social enterprise
  • Community cohesion and wellbeing
  • Sustainable transport, EV charging networks
  • Creation of Town Centres of the Future
‘Home is where the heart is’ we all have strong connection to places and every place is special with unique strengths, resources and characteristics. We recognise that each place is different and that by understanding place we can best support the people of that place to thrive and to support our natural environment.

The National Park is a designated landscape. A place that is protected for its scenic quality, its intrinsic beauty, to serve those deep connections people have to nature and natural beauty.

Our designation speaks to a period in our history where access to such landscapes was unequal and divided. The National Park movement of the 1940s gave the nation the gift of the right to experience these places for the health and well-being benefits they bring, benefits that were sorely needed in a world emerging from the horror of the Second World War.

In a post covid world we recognise that these connections are needed now more than ever, but the 21st Century has also brought with it another series of pressing needs and asks of places such as National Parks. The role of these landscapes now is to support nature recovery, support carbon capture in ways that urban settings cannot support. We do this for the benefits of future generations in our role as a resource for the nation. This means that the National Park must work harder and smarter as a place, to connect people and nature to ensure that both thrive in a mutually beneficial way, now and for forever.

It is in Place, the anchor point of our missions, that this work comes together. It is in place that we work together to implement the solutions, to drive the change, to build the future, for our climate, water, nature and people. To work with the people and agencies who are deeply rooted in these places, at varying scales, to identify the key challenges, and work together to find the solutions that work on the ground.  In doing this we seek to get at the heart of what makes places function as great places to work, live, and play – as providers of ecosystem services such as clean air, water, and locked in carbon.

Gobaith Y Bannau: Hope of the Beacons

We have chosen to develop this mission through the act of holistic place planning as this embodies the guiding principles the International Union for Nature Conservation (IUCN) lays down for protected landscapes like Bannau Brycheiniog – to manage places with and through local people and mainly for and by them.

We celebrate this local level planning a process of empowerment, of distributing authority from statutory actors to the people of the National Park.

As an organisation Bannau Brycheiniog commits to the following for Place

We will use our data and evidence to map and understand the places that we own and manage, so that we can engage with those who work with us in these places to manage them for people, heritage and nature recovery.
We will work with communities within the National Park to develop place plans that build on the special characteristics of their area, to improve quality of life, support economic well being and enhance the built and natural environment.
We will ensure that the special places of the National Park - our Geopark, Dark Skies, World Heritage Site, Visitor Centres, places of importance for culture, heritage, recreation and protected environments - are managed to be inclusive, accessible and exemplars where nature and people connect and thrive together.
We will work in partnership to connect places and make connections within and beyond the National Park boundaries. We will take the wonder of the National Park to people and we will help visitors, businesses and residents understand, celebrate and value the special qualities and places of the National Park.
We will work in partnership to support the local economy and develop sustainable transport solutions that help create resilient and thriving places.

Place Voices

The voices of Brycheiniog is a series of creative stories, poems, songs, and postcards from the people of Brycheiniog. Immerse yourself in their stories, values and passion for Bannau Brycheiniog.
Email from Mair Brychan