Fringe Box



Residents Aim To Form Friends Group To Help Manage Chitty’s Common

Published on: 24 Nov, 2017
Updated on: 25 Nov, 2017

Residents in Rydes Hill, Guildford, are aiming to set up a friends group to help manage Chitty’s Common, parts of which are now sadly overgrown.

Pauline Searle and Sue Day on Chitty’s Common, Rydes Hill.

The common is a small wet woodland on the fringe of Stoughton and Worplesdon.

Pauline Searle, who lives near the common and who is a well known Guildford Borough Councillor with a keen interest in community development, said: “In November 2015, led by our then very own Surrey Wildlife Trust ranger, Leo Jennings, there followed 14 occasions when volunteer work parties helped clear some of the overgrown vegetation, helping to return it to its former glory.

“However, following the restructuring of Surrey Wildlife Trust at the beginning of this year and with most rangers being made redundant, the common is again becoming overgrown and neglected.”

Owl box in a tree on Chitty’s Common.

Pauline said that work previously undertaken included the removing of fly-tipped garden waste, meadow restoration, work around the pond area, removing invasive plants, coppicing hazel, willow and ash trees, removing a wooden boardwalk amid safety concerns, the partial relaying of it, and installing bat, owl and mice nesting boxes.

In 2016 Surrey Wildlife Trust received £12,000 from Tesco’s Bags of Help grant scheme and £3,500 from Surrey County Council’s councillors’ members’ allocation to fund the work. The money has also funded two new wooden noticeboards.

Some further help has been received, however, from Surrey Wildlife Trust. Pauline added: “In the last month they have cut the meadow area and we have a date (Sunday, December 10) when some of the trust’s staff will come along and help us begin our work. They are letting us have some equipment and tools paid for from the original funding.

“All we need now are willing volunteers to come forward to help out or even show an interest.

“We need a core group of helpers, and they do not have to be there every time were hold a work group session, planned to be on a monthly basis.

“We had some regular helpers before and we are hopeful they will help in the future, but we need more.”

Mao of Chitty’s Common.

Pauline and fellow resident Sue Day have hand delivered 350 leaflets to households around the common encouraging them to go along to the first volunteer day on Sunday, December 10, from 10am to 3pm.

Meet at the side of the common off Rydes Hill Road by the noticeboard.

Pauline said: “Everyone is welcome of all ages and abilities, even if you can only spare an hour or two. It will be a good opportunity to meet like-minded fellow residents in our community. We hope enough people who come along will be interested in forming a friends group.”

Share This Post

Leave a Comment

Please see our comments policy. All comments are moderated and may take time to appear.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *