Elstead Group of Commons
active military training area
Know before you go
Parking informationCar park off B3001
Not suitable for wheelchair users or people with mobility issues
When to visit
Opening timesOpen at all times
Best time to visitJune to September
About the reserve
Royal, Elstead and Ockley Commons are managed by the Trust on behalf of the MoD, while neighbouring Bagmoor Common is owned by the Trust.
The commons are very popular with dog walkers, families and horse riders. They're a great place for bird watching - nightjars, Dartford warblers, tawny owls, woodpeckers and cuckoos have been spotted here.
The Trust's herd of conservation grazing Belted Galloway cows can often be seen at work keeping scrub under control on precious lowland heath habitats.
The commons are extremely important in Surrey for 'saproxylic invertebrates' such as stag beetles, which are dependent on decaying wood. Fallen trees are deliberately left as deadwood habitats for invertebrates and fungi.
The site boasts several ponds and is a stronghold for breeding toads, supporting an estimated 1,000 individuals! It’s also a good place to spot a variety of dragonflies. Woodland butterflies, notably white admiral and purple hairstreak, are also a feature of these reserves.
Active military training area, please respect military training activity.