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North Wessex Downs

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Natural area

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Source: GeographBot

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The North Wessex Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty is located in the English counties of West Berkshire, Hampshire, Oxfordshire and Wiltshire. The name North Wessex Downs is not a traditional one, the area covered being better known by various overlapping local names, including the Berkshire Downs, the North Hampshire Downs, the White Horse Hills, the Lambourn Downs, the Marlborough Downs, the Vale of Pewsey and Savernake Forest.
The AONB covers an area of some 1,730 km2 . It takes the form of a horseshoe on its side, with the open end facing east, surrounding the town of Newbury and the River Kennet watershed. The northern arm reaches as far east as the suburbs of Reading in mid-Berkshire and as far north as Didcot in South Oxfordshire, whilst the southern arm similarly reaches Basingstoke in northern Hampshire. The western extreme of the AONB reaches as far as Calne and Devizes. The highest points are the 297 m summit of Walbury Hill, situated southeast of Hungerford in West Berkshire , and the Milk Hill-Tan Hill plateau northeast of Devizes in central Wiltshire, at 295 m above sea level.


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