The Cattle are back

30 Jul 2019

We have five cattle on the Common – they are adjusting to their new surroundings fenced in Railway Field and will stay there until Monday in order to let them settle in.  Then they should be released firstly into the May bushes area and then into Larks Meadow – probably at the beginning of September once the orchids have finished..

On Sunday 11th AugustMaple Lodge Nature Reserve will once again be open to the general public when it holds its annual Discovery Day.  The reserve is one of Rickmansworth’s hidden secrets and is home to a rich variety of wildlife including waterfowl, woodland birds, bats and butterflies.

Throughout the day guided tours of the reserve will be organised by members of the Maple Lodge Conservation Society.  There are two lakes and many hides to explore around the reserve, some of which have wheelchair access.

Light refreshments will be available all day and there will also be plants, second-hand books and greeting cards on sale.  Entry to the reserve and parking will be free of charge.   Opens at 11:00 a.m. with last admission at 4:00 p.m.

For more information please contact: Keith Pursall, Chairman, Maple Lodge Conservation Society on 07580 535986 or

Many thanks to the Parish Council for organising and the weather for being sunny.  We enjoyed a very successful Village Day and welcomed in 6 new members – and it was particularly nice when existing members came up and said who they were as we very much appreciate this direct contact with you and we do hope that more of you will follow suit like that in the future.
Pride of place this year went to our “Clean it up” campaign, with a very explicit message to dog walkers who don’t. We had an 11 foot sycamore tree festooned with 21 poo bags full of (inert) material that represented the number of poo bags the rangers have to remove from trees and shrubs every week.
Our display of newts maintained the interest of all who visited us – and it was heartening to find how many knew what they were – and in French and Italian – ‘dragons’ was a colourful guess too, especially for the little larvae with their feathery fronds behind their ears. And lots recognised ‘sea snails’ and were intrigued to see their bodies contract and expand as they moved on the glass sides of the tank.
And we had questions about planning permissions for developments and quite a few about lizards.

At the end of the Parish Council meeting on Tuesday 16 April our Chairman Michael Hyde presented Jackie Worrall with a token of appreciation and thanks for her long membership of the Committee of Friends of Chorleywood Common  (Jackie stood down at the recent AGM). Jackie continues to serve on the Parish Council (currently as Vice Chairman) so her knowledge, love and support for the Common will continue.

The Parish Council agreed that a councillor should attend Friends Committee meetings as a non-voting member to maintain the close contact and information sharing between the Parish and Friends.  This role would be appointed at the Full Parish Council meeting in May when councillors are voted into which sub-committees and liaison roles they will fulfill for the coming year.

Social & AGM report

29 Mar 2019

Great to see those members who came last night.  We had a superb presentation by Daniel Du Gard on how the Common has changed, his presentation is here (click).

Then the formal AGM took place.  Michael Hyde gave his Chairman’s report for the year here (click).  The meeting gave thanks and expressed great appreciation to Jackie Worrall who is standing down, but all other current committee members were re-elected.  There is space for more members to contribute to the committee, please contact us to find out more.

After some drinks, crisps and chat, Tony Edwards, member of Parish Council and Chair of the Open Spaces Committee, demonstrated CPR and resuscitation using a defibrillator on a dummy.  There are four defibrillators in Chorleywood and if you find someone collapsed and not breathing, first check it is safe to approach, and if they are not breathing call 999 and start CPR.  999 will direct you (or another passerby) to get a defibrillator and once opened the machine tells you what to do, no training or expertise is required.  It saves lives.

Now, get out and enjoy the Common in the sunshine!

Ranger Walks and Tasks  - Last Thursday of every month 10.00am – 12.30pm (ending at a pub where people can stay for lunch/a drink if they wish).

28 March – Laurel & holly cutting and marking – meet at Cricket Club car park

In order to let our new-to-fatherhood Conservation Ranger, Daniel du Gard, return as swiftly as possible to his parental duties after his talk to us about the Common, we have re-timed the evening so the talks will be on first, then it will be concluded with the formal business of the AGM now starting closer to 9.30pm than 8.15pm.

There are a number of activities planned by the Rangers and Parish Council for Easter on the Common on 11th April 2019.

I expect it will start at the Cricket Club Pavilion but details will be provided on the Parish Council website.

I would like to invite you to an evening where you can meet your fellow members and members of your Committee as well as attending the AGM. We would like to get to know you better and this occasion provides the perfect opportunity. Speakers will be both opening and closing the event.
The evening will be held on Thursday 28th March 2019, starting at 8.00pm, in the Chorleywood Library, followed by the 28h Annual General Meeting of the Friends of Chorleywood Common starting at 8.15pm.
The Agenda is here.  Minutes of the 27th AGM, and the accounts for the year to 31 October 2018, are here and here .
The AGM will include a review of the year by our Chairman, Michael Hyde.  The AGM is also your opportunity as members to raise any matters of interest or concern.  Before the AGM there will be a talk on Chorleywood’s defibrillators and after it a talk on the History of Chorleywood Common.
Nikki Varnals will, but Jackie Worrall will not, be standing for re-election to the Committee.  There will therefore be vacancies to be filled by election at the meeting and also the position of Vice-Chair remains unfilled. Nominations for election as Officers or Committee members should be sent to myself as secretary ( at least 7 days before the AGM, i.e. before or on Thursday 21 March.
If, before the AGM, you would like to query or discuss anything contained in the agenda, and in particular if you want to find out what would be involved if you joined the Committee or took office, please contact Michael Hyde ( or any member of the Committee.
As an added incentive to persuade you to come out on what we hope will be a pleasant Spring evening, we shall be serving wine and soft drinks during the evening.  So on behalf of the Committee, I do hope you will be able to join us at the Meeting and look forward to seeing you on the 28th March.
Yours sincerely
Petrea Conway
Hon. Secretary