Newcastle Law School

Commons Land


The objectives of the Realising New Commons project are to investigate legal models for delivering a new approach to securing and protecting common land for the benefit of local communities. Key objectives are:

  1. To identify the potential uses of common land to provide open air recreational use for the public, while at the same time furthering nature conservation and promoting biodiversity.
  2. To consider strategies for achieving the dedication of land as “new” commons protected by Commons legislation.
  3. To consider legal models for structuring land management for the new commons in a manner that reconciles the needs and interests of both landowners and the public. 
  4. To identify legal problems under the Commons Act 2006 associated with the dedication of new land to communal use of the type proposed – and strategies for resolving them.
Professor Chris Rodgers

Video Clips


  • Rodgers C, Mackay D, ‘Creating 'new' commons for the twenty-first century: innovative legal models for ‘green space’’ (2017) Journal of Environmental Planning and Management: DOI:10/1080/09640568.2017.1333407
  • Contested Common Land: Environmental Governance Past and Present (with A.Winchester, E. Straughton, M. Pieraccini), Earthscan Publishing, 2011
  • The Law of Nature Conservation: property, environment and the limits of law xxix and 321pp. (Oxford University Press, 2013).