Community Commons

Community CommonsCommunity Commons

The Herefordshire Community Commons Project was run by Herefordshire Wildlife Trust from 2005 until 2010. The project worked with local landowners, commoners and stakeholders to increase both their awareness of wildlife on commons and their involvement in its conservation. A generous grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund underpinned the project, with additional funding from the Trust, Natural England and Herefordshire Council.

Herefordshire's commons support a significant proportion of the county's most important wildlife. 12 commons formed part of the project:

  • Cefn Hill
  • Vagar Hill
  • Climbing Jack
  • Ewyas Harold
  • Garway Hill
  • Yatton Hill
  • Merbach Hill
  • Brimfield
  • Wyson
  • Badley Wood
  • Herrock Hill
  • Hergest Ridge

Community Commons Map

These commons were selected because of their significant wildlife and habitat values, and because of the potential threats to those values. They were also selected because of historic community support for the project and the potential to significantly improve their wildlife value.

What did the project involve?

Phase One: This ran from October 2005 until May 2006 and was the Development Phase of the project, helping local communities to produce management plans for the 12 commons, primarily relating to wildlife conservation.

During this phase, project staff worked alongside the stakeholders for each common to help give everyone the opportunity to participate in the development of the plans.

Phase Two: This ran from January 2007 until December 2010 and was the Implementation Phase of the project, helping the local communities to put into practice the management plans. This phase paid for a machinery ring to manage invasive bracken and gorse, and provided training to enable the local community to use the equipment.

Wildlife interpretation, remedying access difficulties and reinstating sufficient grazing levels on the commons were other actions that were carried out by the project.

The project culminated in a celebration event, which was held on top of Hergest Ridge common in the autumn of 2010.