Normandy Common was conveyed to the Crown (in this instance, The War Department) in 1876 as being part of the Manor of Cleygate. In 1953 the Ash and Normandy Parish Council purchased the greater part of the Common, including the pond, from the War Department in order to develop the land for recreational purposes. A couple of years later Normandy became a Parish in its own right and in 1989 purchased the remainder of the common from the Ministry of Defence. The Common is situated only a few yards away from the Ash to Brookwood Heaths SSSI (Site of Special Scientific Interest) and Thames Basin Heaths SPA (Special Protection Area). One of the protected species is the Dartford Warbler, a bird which nests close to the ground when breeding.
The Parish Council has since that time developed the area for recreation and leases land to various clubs for development of sport and recreation in the Village. The Cricket Club now has two cricket pitches, batting nets and an impressive Club House and has a range of teams for all ages running throughout the summer. The Tennis Club has three courts and a club house and runs a wide range of activities for members. Non-members can play on some days on a pay-per session basis.
The football pitch and pavilion are owned by Normandy Parish Council and are currently not in use by any club (2023). If your football club would like to use these facilities, please contact the Parish Clerk.
In 2008 The Worplesdon and District Bridleways Association (now Access 4 Equestrians) improved horse-riding access to the Common by constructing a bridleway, along which have been placed new homes for bats, birds, and dormice. Two years later, work started on renovation of an area to the north of the common which has re-established our Traditional Orchard.
In 2013 the Parish Council developed a Play Area with zip-wire, climbing features, basket swing, table tennis table and Street Snooker.
In 2014 the Parish Council commissioned a survey of the Common from Surrey Wildlife Trust. The resultant Survey and Management Plan can be found on our website and proved that the Common is a locally valuable site for a wide range of species. The habitats include semi-natural woodland, acidic and neutral grassland, a spring-fed pond and pond-edge habitats, ditches and hedges.
This led to the whole Common being designated a SNCI (Site of Nature Conservation Interest) and the Council works under the guidance of the Trust and with local groups, including Friends of Normandy Wildlife, to ensure that the flora and fauna of the Common are protected and enhanced.
We updated the survey and management plan in 2022 and will continue to manage the Common in line with this guidance. We are establishing a Conservation Volunteers Group to help us and if you are interested in finding out more, please contact us.