Rossendale Borough Council

Common land and village greens

Maintaining a register

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As a Commons Registration Authority, Lancashire County Council is responsible for maintaining the Registers of Common Land and Village Greens.

This includes updating the registers when ownership of common rights change,or where rights are apportioned (although the circumstances in which we can amend the registers are limited). We amend the registers when we are notified by the Land Registry of changes in ownership of land and we can amend the registers in some instances to show changes in address. We are also responsible for registering "new" village greens.

This register is a statutory document (Commons Registration Act,1965) and shows all such registered land in our area. 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.Likewise, a 'VG' prefix defines the land as town or village green.

Each unit number in the register is divided in three sections showing details of:

Land - This includes a description of the land, who registered it and when the registration became finally registered. There are also related plans which show the boundaries of the land.

Rights - This includes a description of the rights of common(i.e. the right to graze 100 sheep), over which area of the common they are exercisable, the name of the person (the 'commoner') who holds those rights, and whether the rights arise by virtue of a separate landownership by the commoner (i.e. they 'attach' to land).

Ownership - This includes details of owners of common land.However, entries in this section of the registers are not held to be conclusive.

The registers are available for public inspection. You can make an appointment to view the registers by contacting Lancashire County Council 0845 053 0000. Copies of the registers can be provided on payment of a fee.

LCC also carries out searches of the registers and provide certificates. Normally, a search is carried out when a property is being bought or sold. We do not provide search forms, but they are available from law stationers. Search certificates will reveal whether land is registered as common or village green, if there are rights of common, and whether or not ownership is registered. For further information about searches, please use the contact details above.