This is a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) and was granted AONB status in 1958. The rolling hills, farmland, woods and rivers of this unique landscape are rich in geology and wildlife; some of our most famous geological features are 430 million years old. The AONB covers a quarter of Shropshire and is one of only 46 in the UK which, along with National Parks, make up our finest landscapes.

A. E. Housman included a reference to Hughley church, which dates from the 13th century, in his poem ‘A Shropshire Lad’:

THE VANE on Hughley steeple
Veers bright, a far-known sign,
And there lie Hughley people,
And there lie friends of mine.
Tall in their midst the tower
Divides the shade and sun,
And the clock strikes the hour
And tells the time to none.

To south the headstones cluster,
The sunny mounds lie thick;
The dead are more in muster
At Hughley than the quick.
North, for a soon-told number,
Chill graves the sexton delves,
And steeple-shadowed slumber
The slayers of themselves.

To north, to south, lie parted,
With Hughley tower above,
The kind, the single-hearted,
The lads I used to love.
And, south or north, ’tis only
A choice of friends one knows,
And I shall ne’er be lonely
Asleep with these or those.

Hughley Church