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We have become the proud owner of a right of common on land known as St Clement’s Common at Rushall near Diss in Norfolk.
The society’s right is of ‘estovers’, ie to collect furze and bracken. The right was originally granted by the late landowner, Daphne Buxton, to a local member of the society, Maurice Philpot. Daphne Buxton wanted to protect the three-acre site from development. Once the right had been created, the land became a common in law (CL 443) and was registered in Norfolk County Council’s common-land register. Now the public has the right to walk here and the land is protected from encroachment.
Daphne subsequently gave the common to Dickleburgh and Rushall Parish Council. Maurice has generously passed his right of common to the society, in celebration of our 150th anniversary last year.
Says Nicola Hodgson, our case officer: ‘We are delighted to become the owner of a common right, which gives us a stake in this lovely open space. It is well-loved and enjoyed by the community and is an important part of the local scene.
‘Thanks to the foresight of Daphne and Maurice, the land will be protected for all time.’
Says Maurice Philpot: ‘It had been my intention that the Open Spaces Society should inherit my right of common — but sometimes it is good to realise an ambition in one’s lifetime. So, as a minor part of the society’s 150th birthday celebrations, I had the pleasure of conveying my right to the society as a gift.’