A bed of elegant anemones (credit: Dr Leigh Howarth)
Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSIs) give legal protection to the best sites for wildlife and geology in England
The first SSSIs were identified in 1949 when the then Nature Conservancy notified local authorities of SSSIs, so their conservation interest could be taken into account during the development planning process.
Natural England has responsibility for identifying and protecting the SSSIs in England under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981. For further information, see here.