Bringsty Common

Bringsty Common is located in Herefordshire, England – 3 miles to the east of Bromyard on the A44 between Worcester and Bromyard, central grid reference SO700548. It covers more than 220 acres supporting over 70 households. Together with nearby Bromyard Downs and Badley Wood, this represents over 75% of Herefordshire Common Land.

The Common presents a varied landscape, with striking contrasts between the open sweeping slopes to the north, the intimate, almost hidden valleys and the bowls, like natural amphitheatres, sheltering beneath the dramatic slopes which descend from the prominent central ridge.

Bringsty lies within the parishes of Whitbourne to the east and Linton to the west. The joint parish councils of Whitbourne and Brockhampton Group act as agents to Herefordshire Council and the day to day management of the Common has been assigned to Bringsty Common Manorial Court.

Besides its status as a registered common, the Herefordshire Nature Trust designated Bringsty as a Special Wildlife Site in 1990. Bringsty has no obvious geographical or social centre, but for many years has had a clear and unique identity.

Contrary to popular belief, common land needs to be actively managed to maintain its natural beauty and facility as a haven for wildlife as well as its traditional purpose of grazing. Over hundreds of years the distinctive character of Bringsty has developed through traditional management by the Commoners. Up to 1997 this had been achieved with little assistance from the local councils. Traditional management had all but ceased, leading to significant changes in the nature of the vegetation. There was serious concern that, left unchecked, this process would result in significant decline in the unique ecological diversity of the Common. In response to this, the Manorial Court commissioned a management plan which formed the basis of a successful application for a Countryside Stewardship Scheme grant from MAFF. Since 1997 the common has been actively managed by the Manorial Court under the terms of CSS works programme.