THE South Downs National Park will celebrate its tenth birthday on March 31.

Margaret Paren, who chairs the South Downs National Park Authority, said: “Although we are a young national park, we have achieved much over the past ten years.

“This has only been possible thanks to the efforts of our local communities and a wide range of partners, as well as the hard work of volunteers.

"For all their contributions I would like to say a heartfelt ‘thank you’.”

To mark the park’s first ten years, the authority has listed its top ten achievements – nature recovery on a landscape scale, working with farmers and other custodians, the International Dark Sky Reserve, improved access, discovering and sharing cultural heritage, encouraging children to visit, promoting the national park, supporting its communities, planning that fulfils its purpose and duty, and recruiting volunteers.

Recent support for the national park’s communities includes a Sustainable Communities Fund grant to create an educational mosaic at Butser Ancient Farm, one of 202 park projects given a total of £1.75million from the fund.