Commons are areas of Crown land set aside to benefit the local community. Most commons were established in the late 1800s for town residents and small-scale local farmers to use as a common area for grazing, watering of stock and collection of firewood.

There are currently about 200 commons across the state, where eligible local residents and farmers who are listed on the commoner’s roll can use the common. Most commons are managed by trust boards that are elected by the 'commoners'.

Most commons will have signage identifying the common and contact details for more information. Please contact the commons trust board for information on eligibility and the application process or contact us for advice.

More information on commons management is available on the Reserve Manager website.

Recognising and protecting the values of commons

The future of commons was the focus of consultation conducted in 2017 to ensure that their values are protected and their historical significance is recognised.

After considering all views, the NSW Government decided to retain the Commons Management Act 1989 – the existing legislation governing the management of commons in NSW.

An approach to commons: report on stakeholder submissions provides details of the consultation and submissions received.