Latest News

Long Mynd, Shropshire Hills

Celebrating upland commons

February 16, 2021

Thanks to National Lottery players some of our best loved places in the uplands of England will be better looked after.  A partnership of 24 organisations, including the society, will empower those who graze common land, the commoners, to manage them better to restore peat, create habitats for birds and butterflies, and improve the quality…

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The Villagers, about two years ago, with the entrance to the car park. Photo: Peter Trimming, Creative Commons Licence.

We help to save Surrey common from enclosure

February 15, 2021

The Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs has refused consent to the Hon Peter Herbert for fencing and a gate across part of Blackheath Common in Surrey.  Blackheath is four miles south-east of Guildford in the Surrey Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Peter Herbert, lord of the manor, wanted to erect…

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North Downs Way, photo David Anstiss

We slate cavalier treatment of national trail in Dover development

February 2, 2021

We have objected to the cavalier treatment of the North Downs Way National Trail in the ‘White Cliffs Inland Border Facility’ development north of Dover in Kent.  The society has supported the objection from the White Cliffs Group of the Ramblers. The Department for Transport wants to shove the ancient way onto a circuitous route…

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Our new watchdog in the West Midlands

January 26, 2021

We have appointed Jack Jennings as our local correspondent for Sutton Coldfield and North Warwickshire. Jack will act for the society in keeping a close watch on paths, commons, greens and open spaces in his area and defending them from adverse change. Jack has lived in Sutton Coldfield for much of his life, and has…

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Our new ‘eyes and ears’ for north Dorset

January 11, 2021

We have appointed Keith Yarwood as our local correspondent for north Dorset. Keith will be our eyes and ears, keeping a close watch on paths, commons, greens and open spaces in the former North Dorset District Council area. Keith is also vice-chair of Stourpaine Parish Council.  He is familiar with checking the state of public…

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Our last-minute bid to rescue lost commons

January 4, 2021

We have made 78 applications to rescue lost commons in England’s seven pioneer areas[1]  before the deadline of 31 December 2020. The applications are to register these precious spaces as common land.  If successful, they will give the public the right to walk, and in some cases to ride, on the land and will protect…

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Happy Christmas 2020

December 22, 2020

Watch our general secretary, Kate Ashbrook’s Christmas 2020 message.

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From Mynydd Bodran looking north to the common

We fight development on Conwy common

December 2, 2020

We have objected to a planning application on a common at Mynydd Bodrochwyn, Llanfair Talhaiarn, five miles south of Abergele in Conwy. The application, from Mr Norman Frost, is for a museum and car-park.  The North Wales Ramblers are among the objectors.   The Open Spaces Society has pointed out that, since the land affected…

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Celebrating the CROW Act’s 20th birthday

November 30, 2020

Today, 30 November, we celebrate 20 years since the Countryside and Rights of Way (CROW) Act obtained royal assent.  Part one of the Act was a great milestone in the history of the access movement, giving the public the right to walk responsibly on all registered common land and mapped mountain, moor, heath and down…

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Gifting paths and open spaces via a society membership subscription

November 28, 2020

Do you know someone who enjoys spending time in open spaces or exploring our amazing network of paths? Would you like to buy a gift in this pandemic year that shows how much we have all come to value our outdoors, now more than ever? Would you like to make an environmentally friendly and ethical…

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