We are the Commons Registration Authority (CRA) for South Gloucestershire. This means we are responsible for maintaining the registers of common land and village greens in the area.

The registers are definitive and provide information about each common land or village green unit under 3 categories:

  • land: a description of the land and its boundaries
  • rights: who has rights to use it and what these rights are
  • ownership: who owns it or who owned it when it was first registered as a common or green

Register land as a new town or village green

You can apply for us to register land as a new town or village green under Section 15 of the Commons Act 2006.

To apply you first need to read DEFRA’s town and village greens: how to register page.

Then download GOV.UK’s application for the registration of land as a Town or Village Green form 44.

Send the completed form by:

  • email: locallandcharges@southglos.gov.uk
  • post: South Gloucestershire Council, Department for Resources and Business Change, Legal and Democratic Services, PO Box 1953, Bristol, BS37 0DB

We are unable to comment or provide specialist advice on individual applications but may provide general guidance about making applications.

Register of common land

The registers are available for public inspection free of charge during normal working hours from Monday to Friday. To view them you must make an appointment using the contact details on this page.

We can provide information about procedures but where legal advice or interpretation of the law is needed independent legal advice must be obtained.

Understanding the register

Each area of common land and town or village green is listed in the registers under a unique unit number.

A ‘CL/’ prefix defines the land as common. A ‘VG/’ prefix defines the land as a town or village green.

We maintain a list of the units shown in each register containing additional information about the unit.

Rights of access

You can find information on public rights of access on our commons page.

Amend the register of common land

Individual members of the public, or groups such as an association or a limited company, can make applications to change the registers of common land and or town and village greens.

Commons Act 2006

Section 19(2) (a) and Paragraphs 6 to 9 inclusive of Schedule 2 allows for the correction of mistakes made by a Commons Registration Authorities (CRA) and the removal of wrongly registered land (for example if an error was made when mapping the boundary of a common at the time it was registered)

You should read GOV.UK’s common land guidance before applying to correct the register

Fees

No fee is payable where a valid application is made under Section19 (2)(a). 

For all other applications a fee of £3507.60 will be charged in respect of each register unit.

There are sometimes 2 sets of fees may be payable. One for the CRA and another for the Planning Inspectorate (PINS). This is in the event that the application is referred to the Secretary of State for determination.

PINS fees currently range from £2800 to £3800.

When applications should be made

Applications under paragraphs 6 and 7 of Schedule 2 must be made by 15 March 2027.

There is no time limit for applications under section 19(2)(a).

How to apply

You can apply to amend the register by downloading a commons registration application form from DEFRA.

You should use the form that is most applicable to your circumstances. These range from CA1 to CA15.

If you use the incorrect application or apply by letter then your application will be returned.

Any maps or plans which are required to accompany the application form must be to the scale detailed in the application forms.

What happens next

There is no specific time for determination of these applications. Valid applications will be determined in the order they are received.

More information including comprehensive guidance notes and the full list of application forms is available on GOV.UK’s guidance for commons registration.

Rights of common

Common land may be privately owned but one or more persons (who may not include the owner) known as ‘commoners’ may be entitled to use the land or take resources from it.

You can find more comprehensive information on GOV.UK’s managing common land page.

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