Landscape history, palaeoecology, ecosystem services, ecosystem function,
landscape change, resilience
Environmental historians and palaeoecologists have argued for a long-term approach to the understanding of nature conservation designations and environmental management, favouring long-term views of ecological dynamics. This contrasts with the approach of planning for stasis and stability within reserve-based nature conservation. The current shift to an ecosystem services and ecosystem function approach advocated via recent Defra policy proposals in the wake of the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (MEA)
may allow for a more dynamic focus. Local historical evidence for shifts in ecosystem
services from North West England, and recent stakeholder discussions of possible future changes demonstrate that ecosystem services have shifted through time in upland pastoral landscapes and will need to continue to shift in the future due to economic imperatives from regional, national and international drivers.