About Us


Finding Sanctuary is one of four regional projects tasked with designing Marine Conservation Zones (MCZs) around England and recommending them to Government by the end of August 2011. Marine Conservation Zones are a new designation introduced by the Marine and Coastal Access Act.

We are working with stakeholders to design MCZs in the south-west as part of a wider network of Marine Protected Areas (MPAs). The MPA network will be a collection of different sites that work together to provide more benefits than an individual site could on its own.

Finding Sanctuary is fundamentally about shared decision making. From the earliest planning stages, we have worked closely with stakeholders to explore where MCZs could best be located, identifying possible areas of conflict and finding ways of working around them. Identifying Marine Conservation Zones that provide maximum benefits to nature and minimise the impact to stakeholders is central to the success of Finding Sanctuary.

It is important to point out that Natural England are currently consulting on new proposed Special Areas of Conservation in the region. Finding Sanctuary is totally separate to this process and has no influence over it.  However, we will ensure that we plan MCZs within the context of all new and existing marine protected area designations, taking account of the ecological benefits they already deliver.

Latest News

Final Recommendations Report click for more

Final Recommendations Summary Report click for more

Final Steering Group Meeting Report Available click for more

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