Twin Cottage, Luxury self-catering holiday cottage, Burley, Hampshire, BH24 4BA
The New Forest has not really changed since William the Conqueror in 1079, over 900 years ago established the Forest and its strict laws to safeguard the deer for hunting. Covering 93,000 acres (145 square miles) in area it is the largest unenclosed area in Southern England.
New Forest Keepers, who are employed by the Forestry Commission, are each responsible for a particular beat where they manage the deer and all other wild plant and animal life.
The New Forest consists of a mixture of native deciduous and coniferous woodland, heaths, bogs, streams and estuaries.
Ponies, cattle and pigs are allowed to roam freely, but are privately owned and grazed under an ancient system or grazing rights for the Commoners, under the control of Verderers and Agisters.
Anyone owning or renting property that has the right of pasture attached is entitled to graze stock on the forest.
More than 400 Commoners turn their cattle, pigs, ponies and donkeys out, while the Aigsters police the heaths and woods, checking on the welfare of around 5000 animals all year round.
The Verderers court which dates back to Norman times, still meets in Lyndhurst to administer the commoning system and its forest habitat.
Organise a Forestry Commission Ranger to take you walking deep into the heart of the Forest, to places you would never find alone. Tel: 023 8028 3141.
New Forest Forestry Commission events.
Info & booking on 023 8028 6840
Twin Cottage Featured in Sunday Telegraph
Newspaper's '10 Best UK Cottages
Featured in The Guardian Newspapers '5 Best Forest Cottages in the UK'