Commoners dwelling scheme

Providing affordable housing for commoners has long been recognised as essential for the future viability of the commoning system in the New Forest.

Commoning is one of the oldest traditions on the Forest. The grazing of livestock under the commoning system shapes the landscape and cultural heritage of the national park. Without commoning the special qualities of the New Forest National Park cannot be maintained.

The commoners dwelling scheme was set up to provide a way for commoners to enter into a legal agreement which says they meet certain conditions which show a commitment to commoning. This allows them to apply for planning permission so they can build a home outside the New Forest villages and continue their tradition of commoning in the Forest.

The scheme includes checks to confirm that applicants are genuine commoners. The house has to be available long term at an affordable price for use by commoners exercising their rights.

In the box on the right hand side of this page you will see links to the guidance notes and application form, and the 2011 review of the scheme.

  1. Commoners dwelling scheme (you are here)
  2. Commoners dwelling scheme panel

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