Green Belt (not to be confused with the term 'greenfield')

A designation for land around certain cities and large built-up areas, which aims to keep this land permanently open or largely undeveloped. The purposes of the green belt is to:

  • check the unrestricted sprawl of large built up areas
  • prevent neighbouring towns from merging

  • safeguard the countryside from encroachment

  • preserve the setting and special character of historic towns

  • assist urban regeneration by encouraging the recycling of derelict and other urban land

Green Belts are defined in a local planning authority's development plan.