If you're planning on visiting the Malvern Hills and Commons this Bank Holiday weekend, we've got some top tips for enjoying your time here whilst helping to conserve this sensitive landscape.
Over the last 12 months, outdoor spaces have played an important part of people's lives as they have provided a safer space to gather, places to exercise for mental and physical health and opportunities to reconnect with nature.
Sadly, the increase in visitors last summer also resulted in an increase in problems on the Hills and Commons including littering, BBQ's and dog fouling.
To put a stop to these issues and to care for the Hills and Commons we're are urging people who visit to follow the Countryside Code and leave no trace when they visit.
You can leave no trace on the Malvern Hills and Commons by:
Putting your litter in a bin
Litter is harmful to wildlife and grazing livestock and it spoils the environment for others. If there are no bins available or the bins are full, please take your litter home with you. Do not leave litter alongside a full bin as it can blow away and cause more harm.
Picking up after your dog
Bag up your dog's poo and put it in a bin. If there is no bin available, please take it home. Dog poo can cause illness in people, wildlife and livestock.
Keeping your dog under effective control
Keeping your dog under effective control means keeping your dog in sight at all times, being confident it will return on command, or kept on a lead. The Hills and Commons are visited by walkers, horse riders and cyclists who may not want to be approached by your dog.
The Hills and Commons are grazed by cattle and sheep all year round. Always put your dog on a lead near livestock, including within the temporary grazing compartments, to keep the animals safe. The locations of the Trust's livestock grazing projects can be found using Stockwatch which is updated weekly.
Ground nesting birds can be found within the landscape and are particularly sensitive to disturbance by dogs. Where you see the ground nesting bird signs, always keep you and your dog to the path.
Leaving the BBQ at home
BBQ's and fires present a huge risk that puts wildlife, visitors and livestock in danger. They are not permitted anywhere on the Hills and Commons so please leave them at home. Risk of wildfires increases with warmer, drier weather.
Leaving the drone at home
Drones cause disturbance to wildlife, livestock and other visitors and are not permitted on the Hills and Commons. Please leave the drone at home.
Being aware of countryside access
Footpaths and bridleways cross this landscape and provide access for different types of recreational activities. Make sure you're aware of where you can access by checking public rights of way on Worcestershire County Council, Herefordshire County Council, Ordnance Survey maps or by getting one of our free maps and guides.
Malvern Hills Acts - Access across the landscape is granted to walkers (and those using mobility aids) and horse riders unless specifically signposted
As in the wider countryside cyclists have access along bridleways and permissive cycle paths. Leave no trace by not creating your own cycling trails or following those off bridleways.
Parking in designated areas
The Trust's car parks provide safe, dedicated places for starting adventures on the Hills and Commons. Please park within these areas. Do not park on the verges which puts people at risk and also damages these wildflower-rich wildlife areas.
The Malvern Hills and Commons are special places and are there for people to enjoy. Spending time with friends and family in nature is good for our mental and physical health and we can create wonderful memories. By taking care and respecting the environment, you will be protecting this landscape for future generations to also make great memories.
Thank you and we hope you enjoy your visit.