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Practical work

A significant part of the work of the Chilterns Commons Project was practical work on 27 commons across the region.  This involved the restoration of precious habitats and historic features on commons, and access improvements.  This is a summary of what we achieved. 

Commons in Bedfordshire

  • Bison Hill - scrub clearance on chalk grassland
  • Dunstable Downs - repair of erosion scars on the burial mounds at Five Knolls
  • Galley & Warden Hills - scrub clearance on chalk grassland
  • Totternhoe Knolls - removal of, and surgery to, trees on the baileys at Totternhoe Castle
  • Whipsnade Heath - scrub clearance and tree work to widen rides and extend glades

Commons in Buckinghamshire

  • Austenwood - holly and scrub clearance
  • Bradenham Hill (part of Naphill Common) - removal of, and surgery to, trees on the rings at The Clumps, installed an interpretation board
  • Cadmore End - installed two interpretation boards
  • Coleshill - access improvements, tree work including pollarding of willows by pond, hurdles and new hedge by electricity sub-station, installed an interpretation board
  • Downley - restoration of Mannings Pond
  • Ibstone - restoration of three ponds
  • Ley Hill - hedge laying, installed an interpretation board
  • Marlow - tree work to improve access and reveal local history of clay pits, installed four interpretation boards
  • Moorend - 'halo' veteran trees, installed an interpretation board
  • Northend - pond restoration
  • Pitstone (part of the Ashridge Estate) - surgery to trees on Moneybury Hill, installed an interpretation board
  • West Wycombe Hill - removed trees from hill fort ramparts, scrub clearance on chalk grassland 

Commons in Hertfordshire

  • Berkhamsted - scrub clearance to reveal WWI troop training trenches, installed an interpretation board
  • Box Moor - new hedge established
  • Chorleywood - restoration of Church Pond, installed three interpretation boards 
  • Roughdown - installed an interpretation board
  • Sheethanger - installed an interpretation board

Commons in Oxfordshire

  • Maidensgrove Scrubs (part of the Warburg Reserve) - tree surgery to restore ancient beech coppice
  • Nettlebed - restoration of Stradwell Pond, installed an interpretation board, created a play trail
  • Peppard - scrub clearance and tree work to restore heathland glade
  • Watlington Chalk Pits - scrub management to improve access
  • Woodcote - restoration of Upper Pond, restoration of dipping well

We are grateful to those who own and manage the commons concerned who allowed us to work on their land.  Where applicable, permission was also obtained from Natural England for work on Sites of Special Scientific Interest, from English Heritage (now Historic England) for work on Scheduled Monuments, and from the Forestry Commission for tree work.  We are grateful for financial support from the Heritage Lottery Fund which made all this possible. 

Ibstone common pond 

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