Historic Landscape Characterisation (HLC) is a tool that helps to manage change in the historic environment and understand the inherited qualities, character and interest of landscape. It uses a non-judgemental, methodical approach, piecing together information from new and historic maps, from aerial photos, and from the wealth of data that we already have about archaeology and buildings. It builds up area-based pictures of how places in town and country have developed over time and explains the cultural, historic and archaeological attributes of the landscape. It shows how the past exists within today's world.
English Heritage's HLC programme provides a framework for broadening our understanding of the whole landscape and contributes to decisions affecting tomorrow's landscape.