Conservators collaborate with community to care for Sun Hill Common

The Conservators of Therfield Heath are collaborating with the local community to look after Sun Hil

The Conservators of Therfield Heath are collaborating with the local community to look after Sun Hill Common, Picture: Don Shewan - Credit: Archant

The Conservators of Therfield Heath and Greens have collaborated with the community to create a management plan for a part of Therfield Heath, which has now become affectionately known as Sun Hill Common.

The land at the top of Sun Hill and Briary Lane was subject to a public inquiry back in early 2018, which refused permission for the Conservators to deregister the section – the only part of the heath to come under Royston – and swap it with woodland.

Since then the new project has seen what is now Sun Hill Common given a new lease of life.

Clare Swarbrick was elected a conservator in February this year and appointed chairman in March.

She told the Crow: “The Conservators are delighted to engage with local residents to ensure this part of the heath is used by the whole community.

“This partnership aims to drive the informal recreation and conservation agenda through consultation.”

The common land was declared an Asset of Community Value by North Herts District Council in 2019 after it was nominated by Royston Hills and Lanes Action Group.

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Karen Pearson, who is spearheading community involvement at Sun Hill Common, said: “The 2020 plan is to re-instate the play space with regular cuts by the John O’Conner team who have agreed to support the local community as a gesture of goodwill Additionally, John O’Conner will maintain the conservation areas surrounding the play space with appropriate low frequency cutting.

“In future years the plan will seek to improve the value of the conservation areas, the woodland, car park and SSSI fringe and where appropriate seek grant funding for any costly initiatives.

“Ultimately, we hope the space will live up to its designation as an Asset of Community Value and will be renewed in 2024.

“We are really grateful for the support from John O’Conner and the Conservators and look forward to the next four years.”

Karen is inviting anyone who would like to support the initiative by helping look after Sun Hill Common, or who has any ideas – subject to the common land byelaws – for improving the area.

Anyone interested can get in touch at