Ockham Common

© D Hawkins

Chatley Heath Semaphore Tower

© Matthew Roberts

Ockham Common

© Matthew Roberts

Wisley & Ockham Commons & Chatley Heath


Rare heathland habitat by the side of the M25. Managed on behalf of Surrey County Council. Public access managed by Surrey County Council, conservation managed by Surrey Wildlife Trust


KT11 1NR or GU23 6QA

OS Map Reference

TQ 080 590
A static map of Wisley & Ockham Commons & Chatley Heath

Know before you go

297 hectares

Entry fee

Parking charges apply at Ockham Common from 30th July 2018 & Wisley Common from 6th August

Parking information

Parking at Boldermere Car Park (KT11 1NR), Pond Car Park (KT11 1NR) & Wren’s Nest Car Park (GU23 6QA)

Grazing animals



Public access managed by Surrey County Council, conservation managed by Surrey Wildlife Trust

Not suitable for wheelchair users or those with limited mobility


Under effective control


Picnic area
Disabled toilet
Baby changing facilities

When to visit

Opening times

Open at all times

Best time to visit

June to September

About the reserve

Getting to these remarkable reserves isn’t a problem. At the junction of the M25 and the A3, they are within easy reach of visitors from across the south-east. Take a drive here and you’ll be rewarded with more than 800 acres of heathland and woodland.

It is a nationally important site for dragonflies and damselflies, with twenty species recorded. It also attracts many rare birds, including the hobby, which is one of the few creatures that can actually catch dragonflies.

You’ll see how we are managing the valuable heathland to make sure that birch and Scots pine don’t take over. Surrey has lost 85% of its heaths in the last 200 years, so we work hard to protect the remainder. Ideally, we use grazing cattle, but we also cut shrubs and seedlings and clear some of the woods that were once heathland. It initially looks harsh, but the bare soil is soon covered with purple heather.

Take time during your stay to visit the Semaphore Tower on Chatley Heath. It was once part of a chain which was used to pass messages between the Admiralty in Whitehall and the Royal Naval Dockyard in Portsmouth. It was built in 1822 and is now the only restored surviving tower in a line of signalling stations that covered the entire route.

Due to ongoing maintenance the Tower is not currently open to the public.

Facilities at Boldermere car park


Please note that parking charges apply at Ockham and Wisley Commons.

More information

Chargeable car parks:

Ockham Common
Boldermere car park
Pond car park

Wisley Common
Wren's Nest car park

Contact us

Surrey County Council
Contact number: 0300 200 1003

Environmental designation

Local Nature Reserve (LNR)
Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI)
Special Protection Areas (SPA)

Location map

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children sweeping in summer meadow

© Surrey Wildlife Trust

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