Sparkling Streams

River running through lush green countryside

sparkling streams logoThrough The Sparkling Streams Project, we’re working to improve the River Kennet and its tributaries, helping to increase wildlife and reconnect people with nature. 

We’re delighted to have been awarded more than £400,000 from the government’s Green Recovery Challenge Fund and to be working with our partners The Rivers Trust for the Kennet Catchment (ARK), North Wessex Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and  Southern Streams Farmer Group to achieve our goals.

Sparkling Streams Project Overview

Rainbow trout in Hungerford Town and Manor watersChalk streams are globally rare and the River Kennet, running through the North Wessex downs AONB, is one of England’s premier chalk streams. But it’s far from being in good condition. For centuries the Kennet has been affected by human activity, which has degraded the river and water quality, in turn impacting the natural wildlife. This project will help to reverse some of these negative effects.

Helping nature to heal itself

Using nature-based solutions, our aim is to give nature a helping hand to speed up the natural regeneration process. For example, by planting hedges and creating leaky dams and sediment ponds, we can slow the passing water and trap silt, which will naturally clean the water as it goes to the rivers.

How does this help?

  • Cleaner water and slower flows create ideal conditions for a variety of wildlife, from fish and water invertebrates to dragonflies and birds.
  • Hedges provide habitat, food and absorb carbon, helping to reduce the effects of climate change.
  • Cleaner gravels on the riverbed will improve spawning grounds for chalk stream fish such as brown trout, grayling and lamprey.
  • Water voles will be better able to find food, shelter and breed with the creation of corridors of healthy rivers and lush wetland plants.
  • Allowing water back onto Undy’s Meadow will provide a wide range of tiny species, such as the Desmoulin’s whorl snail, with the ideal conditions to thrive.

Like to get involved?

We’d love your help and will share details of any conservation events you can take part in, for instance the big pond clearance – please keep checking here and on social media.

Here’s a short film about the project, produced with the help of our partners.

Our project partners

•  Town and Manor of Hungerford
•  North Wessex Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty
•  The Rivers Trust for the Kennet Catchment (ARK)
•  Southern Streams Farmer Group

Key Dates

December 2020:  Funding awarded
January – March 2021:  Project set-up and recruitment
April – December 2021:  Conservation and restoration activities undertaken
January – March 2022:  Evaluation and reporting


This project is funded by the government’s Green Recovery Challenge Fund. The fund is being delivered by The National Lottery Heritage Fund in partnership with Natural England and the Environment Agency.

Green Recovery challenge Fund logo

Further queries

If you would like further information about the project, please contact Corinna Woodall at North Wessex Downs AONB

Remembrance Sunday 2018: Commemorating 100 years since the signing of the Armistice

Remembrance Sunday had an extra poignancy this year, as it marked the centenary of the signining of the Armistice which brought the First World War to an end.

The parade was lead as always by the wonderful Hungerford Town Band down the High Street to the War Memoraial, where wreaths were laid to remember the fallen. Mr Jack Williams, President of President of Hungerford Royal British Legion read an exultation.


From here Town & Manor Bellman, Mr Julian Tubb, assisted Mr Williams as he led Hungerford town Mayor, Ms Helen Simpson, and Town & Manor Constable, Mrs Ellie Dickins, down the Avenue of Remembrance, lined with the 28 trees planted to remember the lives lost during the Second World War. At the War Memorial, Mr Williams laid a wreath to fallen commrades.


The day’s commemorations then concluded with the lighting of a beacon, as part of the nationwide Beacons of Light to mark The Battle’s Over.



With special thanks to Tony Bartlett for sharing his beautiful and moving photos with us.

Parking Permit Request Form

For residential parking permits at Downview & The Croft, Hungerford.
Please enter your details in the boxes below.
(Please note, you can view the T&Cs below in a larger format via the 'Parking Permit T&Cs' link at the bottom of this web page.)


Car Park - means one of the car parks shown edged red on the Plan and car park means any one of those marked car parks.
Licence Fee - means the YEARLY sum of £ 80.00 (Eighty Pounds) including any VAT.
Licence Period - the period starting from date after day of request and payment completion and (unless terminated under clause 11.2) ending exactly 1 year after.
Plan - means the plan annexed to this licence.
Regulations - means the regulations annexed to this licence and any further reasonable regulations made from time to time by the Licensor for the safety, good management and control of the Car Park and notified in writing to the Licensee or displayed at the Car Park.
Space - means one of the spaces within the Car Park such space being suitable and of a sufficient size for the parking of a private motor car and delineated by kerb stones as the Licensor may from time to time in his absolute discretion designate on 7 days notice to the Licensee and 'Space' means any one of those marked spaces.
Accessway - means the road cross hatched black on the Plan, the use of which is necessary to obtain access to and egress from the Car Park and the Space, or those of them that afford reasonable access and egress thereto and therefrom and that the Licensor from time to time in its absolute discretion designates on 7 days notice to the Licensee.
VAT - means value added tax payable under the Value Added Tax Act 1994 (or any similar or equivalent tax payable instead of or as well as VAT).
Working Day - means any day that is not a Sunday, Christmas day, Good Friday or a statutory bank holiday.
2.1 In this licence
a) the clause headings are for reference only and do not affect its construction
b) the word 'liability' includes all costs, claims, expenses and loss incurred or suffered by the relevant party
c) the words 'include', 'includes' and 'including' are deemed to be followed by the words 'without limitation'
d) the word 'today' refers to the date of this licence
e) general words introduced by the word 'other' do not have a restrictive meaning even where preceded by words indicating a particular class of acts, things or matters
f) an obligation not to do something includes an obligation not to cause or allow that thing to be done
g) obligations owed by or to more than one person are owed by or to them jointly and severally, and
h) references to the end of the Licence Period are to its expiry or sooner determination
2.2 In this licence unless otherwise specified
a) a reference to legislation is a reference to all legislation having effect in the United Kingdom at any time during the Term, including directives, decisions and regulations of the Council or Commission of the European Union, Acts of Parliament, orders, regulations, consents, licences, notices and bye laws made or granted under any Act of Parliament or directive, decision or regulation of the Council or Commission of the European Union, or made or granted by a local authority or by a court of competent jurisdiction and any approved codes of practice issued by a statutory body, and
b) a reference to particular legislation is a reference to that legislation as amended, consolidated or re enacted from time to time and all subordinate legislation made under it from time to time
3 Licence
3.1 In consideration of the Licence Fee and of the Licensee’s obligations in this licence the Licensor grants to the Licensee a non-exclusive licence to park ONE private motor vehicle within a Space in the Car Park whilst the Licensee is owner of the Licensee’s Property for the Licence Period. Parking within the Car Park must be within such Space as directed from time to time by the Licensor the location of such Space being changeable on 7 days notice to the Licensee.
3.2 The Licensor also grants to the Licensee all rights of access over the Accessway as may be reasonably required for the exercise of the rights conferred by this licence. These rights are granted in common with all others entitled to similar rights and on condition that the Licensee does not obstruct or interfere with the rights of the Licensor or any other person so entitled.
4 Payments
The Licensee must pay to the Licensor the Licence Fee on the grant of this Licence
5 Licensee's obligations
5.1 The Licensee must
a) pay the Licence Fee together with any VAT properly payable on it
b) observe and perform the Regulations and comply with the terms of this Licence
c) indemnify the Licensor against all costs expenses or other liability arising from the Licensee's exercise of its rights and/or any breach of its obligations under this licence and/or damage caused by the Licensee to the Space, the Car Park or the Accessway
d) pay and discharge all rates and taxes (if any) payable in respect of the Space
6 Assignment or sharing
6.1 This licence is personal to the Licensee and the Licensee must not assign or purport to assign or deal with it in any other way.
6.2 The Licensee may allow a tenant of the Licensee’s Property to use the rights conferred by this licence provided that such tenant occupies the Licence’s Property under an Assured Shorthold Tenancy.
6.3 For the avoidance of doubt the Licensee must not not share or allow any person other than the Licensee’s Tenant of the Licensee’s Property to use the rights conferred by this licence.
7 Breach of Licensee's obligations
If the Licensor gives written notice to the Licensee identifying a breach of the Licensee’s Obligations including, for the avoidance of doubt, any breach of the Regulations under this licence then the Licensee must within 5 Working Days (or immediately in case of emergency) take all steps reasonably required to remedy that breach. In case of default the Licensor may take all steps reasonably required to remedy the breach notified to the Licensee, and any costs expenses or other liabilities incurred by the Licensor in so remedying will be recoverable from the Licensee as a debt
8.1 Any obligation of the Licensee to pay any sum under this licence includes an obligation to pay any VAT properly payable in respect of the supply to which payment of that sum relates
8.2 Any obligation of the Licensee to repay to or reimburse the Licensor in respect of any expenditure incurred by the Licensor includes an obligation to repay or reimburse any VAT forming part of that expenditure
9 Interest
If the Licensee fails to pay any sum due under this licence within 5 Working Days after the due date (whether formally demanded or not) then the Licensee must pay to the Licensor interest on the sum at a rate of 3% above the base rate of the Bank of England for the period commencing on the due date and ending on the date of payment (after as well as before any judgment)
10 Indemnity
10.1 The Licensee must indemnify and keep the Licensor indemnified against all liability arising directly or indirectly from the exercise of the rights conferred by this licence and any breach of the Licensee’s obligations under this licence and for the avoidance of doubt that includes indemnifying the Licensor against all liability arising directly or indirectly from the exercise of the rights conferred by this licence by any tenant of the Licensee.
10.2 The Licensee must pay to the Licensor on demand, and indemnify the Licensor against, all costs and expenses of professional advisers and agents, including any VAT, incurred by the Licensor in connection with the preparation, negotiation and completion of this agreement.
10.3 The Licensor may and will, if so requested by the Licensee, enforce the obligations on the part of the Licensee of every Space and the Licensee will repay to the Licensor on demand the full amount of all costs and expenses of the Licensor of doing this and must provide, before any step to enforce those obligations is taken, such security for the Licensor’s costs and expenses as the Licensor may reasonably require
11 Termination
11.1 This licence will automatically terminate at the end of the Licence Period
11.2 If the Licensor reasonably considers the Licensee or any tenant of the Licensee to be in material breach of any of its obligations under this licence which, for the avoidance of doubt, includes a breach of the Regulations then the Licensor may give written notice to the Licensee outlining the breach and instructing the Licensee to rectify the breach within 14 days of the date of the Licence. If the breach is not rectified by the end of the 14th day then the Licensor shall be entitled to terminate this licence with immediate effect. No refund of the Licence Fee will be paid in this event.
11.3 Termination of this licence will not release the Licensee from its obligation to pay the Licence Fee and any other sums due under this licence up to the end of the Licence Period
11.4 This Licence will automatically terminate on transfer of the Licensee’s Property to any other party.
11.5 Refunds of the unused proportion of the Licence Fee in the event of transfer of the Licensee’s Property will only be calculated in periods of whole months.
12 Relocation
If any time the Licensor shall wish to relocate, vary or alter the whole or part of the Car Park, the Space or the Accessway for any reason then after the expiry of 7 days prior written notice (during which time the Licensor shall endeavour to agree with the Licensee an alternative position) the Licensor shall relocate or alter the position of the Car Park, the Space or the Accessway and this Licence shall then pertain to the altered Car Park, Space or Accessway
13 Service of notices
13.1 Any Notices under this Licence can be served on the Licensor at The Town and Manor of Hungerford c/o The Town Hall, Hungerford, Berkshire by first class special delivery post or such other address as the Licensor may from time to time notify the Licensee.
13.2 Any Notices under this Licence can be served on the Licensee at the Licensee’s Property by first class recorded delivery post or a Notice will be properly served if delivered personally to the Licensee
14 Licensor's liability
14.1 The Licensor will not be liable to the Licensee or any other person for any obstruction, damage injury or liability caused by any other person using the Car Park or Accessway.
14.2 The Licensor gives no warranty that the Car Park or Accessway is legally or physically fit for the purposes specified in clause 3.
15 No tenancy
The Licensee acknowledges that this licence does not confer a right of exclusive possession in respect of any part of the Car Park or of the Spaces. Nothing in this licence is intended to create a tenancy and at the end of the Licence Period how so ever determined neither the Licensee or any tenant of the Licensee will have no right to remain at or use the Space, Car Park or Accessway and the Licensor is not obliged to grant another licence to the Licensee.
16 Arbitration
Any dispute or difference arising out of or in connection with this contract shall be determined by the appointment of a single arbitrator to be agreed between the parties, or failing agreement within fourteen days, after either party has given to the other a written request to concur in the appointment of an arbitrator, by an arbitrator appointed by the President of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators.
17 Third parties
Nothing in this licence is intended to confer any right on any person pursuant to the Contracts (Rights of Third Parties) Act 1999.

The Licensee must
a) park in an orderly manner within the Space and keep the Space clean and tidy
b) use all reasonable endeavours to prevent oil or grease accumulating on the surface of the Car Park or the Space
c) use the Car Park, Space and Accessway only for the purposes authorised by this licence
d) comply with all legislation relating to the Car Park Space and Accessway in the exercise of the rights granted by this licence
e) give to the Licensor on the grant of this licence the name of the owner of the car and the make model and licence plate details of the car and the Licensee must notify the Licensor in writing of any change in those details within 10 working days of the change being made. Failure to notify the Licensor will constitute a breach of the terms of this licence.

The Licensee must not
a) deposit rubbish or litter on the Car Park, Space or Accessway and must not bring onto or keep on the Car Park, Space or Accessway any motor fuel, lubricating oil, coolant or other toxic material that might leach into the ground and poison the grazing land of the Common BUT for the avoidance of doubt materials inside the fuel tank, sump and engine of a car can be brought onto the Car Park, Space or Accessway as long as they are not allowed to leak from the car.
b) do anything that may cause the Licensor's policy of insurance (if any) in respect of the Car Park or Accessway to become void or voidable or that increases the premium payable in respect of it. If any act or omission on the part of the Licensee results in an increased premium the Licensee must pay to the Licensor a sum equal to that increase on demand
c) undertake any major maintenance or repair of any vehicle in the Car Park or on the Space, BUT for the avoidance of doubt, car cleaning, minor maintenance and/or emergency repairs will be allowed as long as no materials of a harmful nature are allowed to pollute the ground of the Car Park or Space.
d) display any signs or notices at the Car Park, Space or Accessway without the prior written consent of the Licensor
e) use the Car Park, the Space or the Accessway in such a way as to cause any nuisance, damage, disturbance, annoyance, inconvenience or interference to the Car Park, Space or Accessway or any adjoining or neighbouring property or to the owners, occupiers or users of any adjoining or neighbouring property or Space
f) in any way impede the Licensor, or his officers, servants or agents, in the exercise of its rights of possession and control of the Car Park and/or Accessway and every part of them
g) allow any vehicles with a Maximum Authorised Mass exceeding 3500KG and with no more than 8 passenger seats to park on the Space or Car Park or Accessway or use the Accessway for deliveries
h) allow any tradesman to park anywhere other than on the Space and in the event that a tradesman is required by the Licensee to undertake work at the Licensee’s property, then that tradesman must park in the Space and the Licensee must park their car in an alternative place and for the avoidance of doubt this should not be on the Car Park, Space or Accessway.
i) allow any vehicle within its implied or actual control at any time to block the Accessway.

The Fishery:
Fly Fishing Excellence



We offer the finest fly fishing on three fishery syndicates on the River Kennet and River Dun.

We place great emphasis on traditional fly fishing in a gentlemanly manner, rather than modern ‘catch as many fish as you can’ type approaches. For us the surroundings and setting are as important as the amount of fish caught. We therefore manage our fishery in much the same way as the rest of our estate – with an emphasis on ecology, wildlife, history and tradition.


We are proud of our healthy population of wild brown trout and insist that all fish under 1.5lbs are returned. The fishing is by dry fly from 1st May to 1st July, after which upstream nymph fishing is allowed. We prefer that nymphs represent a natural insect.

We run three syndicates, which are called The Main River Kennet Fishery, Hungerford Marsh Fishery and Freeman’s Marsh Fishery.


The Main River Kennet Fishery

The Main River Kennet Fishery consists of nine beats stretching from the Chilton Foliat fishery downstream to Avington. A sport fishery has been running here at Hungerford since the Wilton Fly Fishing Club started in 1876. In the intervening years, many of the country’s best-known anglers have fished at Hungerford and continue to do so, in recognition of the quality of the fishing on offer.

Our season starts on 1 May. The best of the sport to be had at the start of the season is during the morning to hatches of hawthorn fly and olives.
Our mayfly season runs from the last week of May until the second week of June.

Throughout the summer, the best of the fishing is of an evening, with exceptional rises of fish to blue winged olive.
As summer draws to a close, the longer and cooler nights encourage fish to become more active in the daytime and fishing with largesedge patterns is favoured.


Membership is let as a full rod (i.e. 7 days a week, fish any beat at any time).



Hungerford Marsh

Hungerford Marsh beat extends for approximately 950 metres of the River Dun (which is a major tributary of the River Kennet in Hungerford). This is a very private and intimate section of River with its own fishing hut.

We run this beat as a wild trout fishery and although it has only been in our management for a few years, we have already fish to 5.5lbs caught and returned.

Membership is let as a nominated day of the week and rods are permitted to bring a guest if they so wish.


Freeman’s Marsh

Freeman’s Marsh is 1 kilometre in length and is situated upstream of Hungerford Marsh on the River Dun. Although the same River, this beat is much shallower. Consequently, most of the fish caught are smaller but more numerous than on Hungerford Marsh. This beat is more wild in character and flows through the Freeman’s Marsh SSSI. It is therefore more physically challenging to fish this beat.


Membership is let as a
nominated day of the week rod.



Grayling Fishing

At Hungerford we have a healthy population
of grayling, with many fish in excess of 2lbs and some in excess of 3lbs.

Members are welcome to fish for grayling on all three syndicates until the end of December.

Meet the Team

Our River Keeper, Rob Starr (with trout), is a highly experienced and knowledgeable member of the team, as well as being a qualified fly casting instructor. He is a non-executive director of Action for the River Kennet and sits on their executive committee. Working with his assistant, Jimmy Hill, they keep the fishery in exceptional condition throughout the season.










Membership Information

We are currently accepting invitations for new members on an annual basis. If you would like more details please get in touch.

We do not sell day tickets – if you are looking for this we suggest contacting our neighbours:

Avington Estate

Barton Court

For more information on the history of the Hungerford Fishery, please email or call 01488 686555.

Trustees & Committees

The Trustees of the Town & Manor have the responsibility of running the Town & Manor along with four committees:

Follow this link for the Schedule of Meetings and other important dates.

Elections for the Trustees are held every three years.

List of Trustees

The 2016 Election of Trustees of the Town & Manor of Hungerford:

The election for the 10 Trustees was held on 18th May 2016. There were 14 nominations.

The successful candidates were: Barbara Barr 173; Tyrell Bossom 106; Anthony Buckwell 98; Gregory Furr 126; Fiona Hobson 132; Robert James 123; Caroline Lumley 130; Bruce Mayhew 112;  Christopher Scorey 128 and Jonathan Welfare 100.

The unsuccessful candidates were: Paul Burrough 65; Dennis Cryer 97; Julian Dickins 91 and Peter Joseph 95.

2016 Trustess Declaration of Result of Poll

The 2013 Election of Trustees of the Town & Manor of Hungerford:

The election for the 10 Trustees was held on 1st May 2013. There were 13 nominations.

The successful candidates were: Barbara Barr 223; Tyrell Bossom 166; Anthony Buckwell 130; Dennis Cryer 161; Gregory Furr 195; Stewart Hofgartner 213; Robert James 160; Caroline Lumley 148; Bruce Mayhew 140 and Christopher Scorey 148.

The unsuccessful candidates were: Paul Burrough 99; Nicholas Fritz 74 and Peter Joseph 102.

2013 Trustees Statement as to Persons Nominated

2013 Trustees Declaration of Result of Poll

Hocktide 2016

Hocktide – the most important day in the life of the Town and Manor – always takes place on the second Tuesday after Easter. There are many other events and activities that are related to Hocktide itself.


Mar 29th (Tue) 6.00pm Town Hall – Selection of Hocktide Jury: (Private – for all Commoners). The presence of all Commoners is requested. Those selected that evening for the jury, will be issued with a summons as jurors to attend the Hocktide Court on Tuesday.

Apr 3rd (Sun) 10.00am Common Clear-up: All Commoners and friends wishing to assist with the Commons Clear-up please meet at the Downgate at 10.00am.

Apr 4th (Mon) 7.30pm Corn Exchange – Ale Tasting: (By invitation only). The Ale Tasters will carry out their onerous task of testing and declaring on the quality of the ale. Entry is by invitation only.

Apr 5th (Tue) – Tutti Day (Hocktide):

8.00am, Town Hall Balcony – Summoning of all Commoners to Hocktide Court: The Bellman will sound the Constable’s horn from the Town Hall balcony. All commoners will be summoned by the bell and proclamation to attend the Hocktide Court.

the bellman calls the commoners to court at Hungerford Town and Manor's Hocktide 2016

Bellman, Robin Tubb, summoning the Commoners, Apr 2009

9.00am, Town Hall steps – Tithing Men set off: The Constable will present the Tutti Poles, which have been decorated by Fiona Hobson, to the Tithing Men.

Tutti Men and Orangeman Apr 2009

Tutti Men and Orangeman Apr 2009

Then, accompanied by the Orangeman Paul Lewington, and the Tuttigirls, they will set off to collect the dues from the Common Right properties.

9.05am, Town Hall – Hocktide Court: The selected Hocktide Jury will attend and all commoners are called.

Spectators are welcome to watch and listen to this very old tradition.

12.30 for 12.50 to around 4.30pm, Corn Exchange – Hocktide Luncheon:

Tickets to attend this traditional highlight of the town’s year are available to purchase from Crown Needlework, 115 High Street, Hungerford (01488 684011). The lunch is a four course meal with various toasts.

Commoners and Trustees: Tickets are available from 18th March. You are entitled to buy your own ticket (limited to one ticket only) at £30.00, and your partner’s ticket (again limited to one ticket only) at £35.00 provided that they are both paid for by the 7th March. All other tickets will be available at £36.00 from the 8th March on a first-come first-served basis.

Please note: If you wish to pay by credit card there will be an admin charge of £1.00 per ticket.

Before lunch – The Bar will be open at 12.00 noon to enable you to buy your wine by the bottle and soft drinks for lunch. A complimentary glass of wine before the lunch will be provided for you and your guests in the Magistrates Room.

The lunch – commences promptly at 1.00pm, so please be seated by 12.50pm to receive the Constable and her guests.

Be ready to receive the Tithing Men and the Orangeman when they join us for lunch.

Tutti Lunch in Corn Exchange, Apr 2009

Tutti Lunch in Corn Exchange, Apr 2009

Shoeing the Colts – After lunch the Blacksmiths will proceed with the shoeing of the colts. Please explain to your guests that although this is traditional, it is carried out light heartedly and no one should be hurt. A little struggle makes it all the more fun, but they can be shod gracefully if they so wish. A small charge of £5.00 is made to cover the cost of the souvenir horseshoe.

From 5.00pm, The Three Swans Hotel – Anchovies on Toast: All are welcome across the road for the traditional anchovies on toast, courtesy of the Three Swans.

7.30pm, Corn Exchange: Hungerford Town Band will play for the pleasure of the people of Hungerford. (Free admission).

9.00pm, The Three Swans Hotel – Return of the Tithing Men: The last port of call for the Tithing Men is the Three Swans Hotel at approximately 9.00pm. Everyone is encouraged to join the Constable and welcome them safely back at the end of their long and arduous day.

April 8th (Fri), 11.00am, Town Hall – Court Leet: The Court will be in session for all Office Holders elected at the Hocktide Court to be sworn in.

April 10th (Sun) 10.45am – Constable’s Sunday. Outside of Town Hall: The parade of the Commoners, Trustees and various organisations from the town will assemble outside the Town Hall to march, with the Constable for the ensuing year, to the Parish Church.

The Bellman will organise the procession which will be led by the Hungerford Town Band.

11.15 a.m. St Lawrence’s Church – The Croft: Alternatively, you may meet us at the Church. There, we will gather together for a service to celebrate the life of the Community of Hungerford.

Hocktide 2016 – full diary of events (pdf)

Freeman’s Marsh – Bird Nesting Season

a black Glossy Ibis wading in shallow water on Freeman's Marsh in Hungerford

It’s now several years since the Trustees of the Town & Manor of Hungerford launched a long term conservation programme to arrest a depleting wild bird population, constant damage by the cattle to the water courses and vandalism to the structures in the Marsh. We should ask what if anything has been achieved and has this big effort and cost been justified so far?

See our short Glossy Ibis video, a rare visitor to these parts

Fencing of the rivers has limited the invasion by our cattle grazing the water plants and stopped them eroding the banks, prevented the daily visits of dogs that disturbed the water fowl and water voles and made access difficult to wading by unthinking people. Furthermore the riverside has since grown up with indigenous plants to the area giving cover to the river life, fish and a vast population of insects, the major source of food for the birds and fish. A carefully conducted survey of the water voles, an endangered species, was completed last year to ascertain the effect of the work on them. The result was a significant increase in numbers which is contrary to other areas in Berkshire and nationally.

Building protective hazelwood groynes

Rebuilding of the hatches and weir has enabled the Water Keeper to adjust the distribution of water flow between the two arms of the River Dun. This is particularly important in seasons of low flow. Groynes of Hazel bundles have been fixed in the river upstream of the Ash Pool to raise the velocity of the flow of the river to maintain a clean gravel bottom, and to give the right conditions for water weed to flourish, particularly Ranunculous or River Crowfoot and Water Cress in the areas of slack flow. We are very grateful to the volunteers of Freeman’s Marsh Conservation Group for their help with this work.

Mute swan with cygnets

The canal had big works carried out early in 2011, re-instatement of the banks and towpath with back-fill dredging and fencing. The pre-planted indigenous plants in the coir rolls fixed to the sides of the canal have flourished and has established a new and “environmental super space” for birds, animals, fish and insect life. The boats now travel in the middle of the pounds as there is no silt, and do not damage the banks. Marsh Lock is being re-built by British Waterways, shortly to be re-named Canal and River Trust, a national charity. Cobblers Lock was refurbished in 2007, so this stretch of the Canal should be in good order for some 20/25 years.

Coppicing and fencing the hedge row beside the River Dun in Rootes Meadow between the aqueduct and the railway bridge was completed in the 2011 winter and has grown up well. The footpath is back in its proper place and also a site which will develop into a good habitat for wildlife and for a mixed area of trees and shrubs.



For the future we hope to set up wild bird recording and ringing by a team from BTO (British Trust for Ornithology) to establish the population of birds both resident and migrants birds and hope this will start in April.

There are many visitors with their dogs walking daily in the Marsh and it’s important during the bird nesting season, 1st March to 31st July, that dogs are kept on a lead while in the area north of the Canal, which is the area designated SSSI ‘Site of Special Scientific Interest’.

Please bear in mind that dogs may be run free south of the Canal during the nesting season.

It’s pleasing to note that more and more dog walkers are respecting the need for the code of ‘walking their dogs on short leads’ while within the SSSI. For that the Trustees are grateful to those who are setting this new countryside standard, for it’s so important that each of us helps to raise the environmental standards and encourage biodiversity in this unique piece of England. The alternative beggars belief that it will be lost as a trampled piece of Hungerford, denuded of any wild life for future generations.

Robert James
Hon Secretary of the Commons Committee and Trustee of the Town & Manor of Hungerford

What we do

Despite being more than 800 years old, the Town & Manor of Hungerford is as busy and vibrant today as it’s ever been. While much of our focus is on protecting and preserving the incredible wildlife and countryside around us, we’re also active within Hungerford, working hard to benefit the community. Here’s a taste of what we do.

Mission Statement

The charitable purpose of the Town & Manor is to manage its assets, now and in the future, for the benefit of the inhabitants of Hungerford.  To achieve this, we will work to: 

1.      Uphold the unique traditions of Hungerford. 

2.      Preserve and protect the ancient rights of the Commoners. 

3.      Manage the land and buildings in a financially and environmentally sustainable way. 

4.      Provide financial support to groups, causes and projects, within the area of benefit.

Our funds are raised in several ways, including hiring the Town Hall complex, The Croft and Hungerford Common for select events, rod membership fees from the Hungerford Fishery, leasing the John O’Gaunt Inn, and grants from Defra.

Our annual accounts are also published on the Charity Commission website.

Charitable work & fundraising

Our funds are raised in several ways, including hiring the Town Hall complex, The Croft and Hungerford Common for select events, rod membership fees from the Hungerford Fishery, leasing the John O’Gaunt Inn, and grants from Defra.

Carefully managing our land and property means we’re able to create an annual surplus of funds, which is split between donations and investment.

The donations are given to local groups and charities, while the investment helps to maintain the Town Hall so it can be enjoyed for the community of Hungerford, today and into the future.

Wildlife & Conservation

One of our main areas of activity, click here to find out more about what we’ve been up to.

Looking after the Commoner’s Rights

At the very heart of the Town & Manor, from day one to the present day, is the protection of the Commoner’s Rights.  We work hard to preserve these Rights, so they can be enjoyed by the people of Hungerford today, and by future generations.


We are committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and vulnerable adults

View our safeguarding policies 

Terms & Conditions

Hiring the Town Hall Complex

Find out more about hiring a room, or even the whole complex, for your event or special day, here in our downloadable Hire Agreement. To book, please download and complete our Town Hall Booking Form.

25% off Room Hire Charges at Hungerford Town Hall complex

Hungerford residents and charities are eligible for a 25% reduction of the room hire rates of the Hungerford Town Hall complex. Applicants must have an RG17 postcode or be a registered charity. Contact us to apply for a discoutn or for more information.

Hungerford Town Hall hire charges and discount review for 2019

We’re keeping our hire charges unchanged for 2019, but have relunctantly had to review the disount we are able to offer some organisations.

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Hire charges remain the same for 2019
Some discounts will be reduced

Hungerford’s beautiful Victorian Grade II listed Town Hall and Corn Exchange complex is the perfect space for a variety of events, from private wedding receptions and public meetings to yoga classes and flea markets.

The Town Hall is owned and run by the registered charity, the Town & Manor of Hungerford, or the Town & Manor as it’s more commonly known.

For 2019, for the 4thyear running, we won’t be increasing
the standard rates for hiring the Town Hall.
However, the building and its rooms are surprisingly costly to run and maintain, and the charity is making a loss. This has forced us to review the levels of discounts now being offered. From November 2018, while we’re not increasing the standard hire rates (which reflect the running costs), we are reluctantly having to reduce the amount of discount currently enjoyed by some non-charitable and commercial users of the Town Hall.

We appreciate for those businesses affected, this will effectively increase the cost of hiring the Town Hall compared to the nominal rates they’ve previously been charged.  This decision has not been taken lightly.

Increasing cost of running the Town Hall

For the last few years, the cost of running and maintaining the Town Hall has been greater than the income it has generated. In 2018 alone, the Town Hall will make a loss of more than £30,000. Not surprisingly, the charity cannot keep going like this.

The Town Hall is a costly place to run and needs substantial ongoing maintenance. For example, the recent repairs to the roof, bell, internal walls, windows, drainage and flooring cost more than £40,000 (additional to the £30,000 loss mentioned above). And there’s still more work needed in 2019 to preserve the exterior of this lovely old building.

Making savings where we can

We’ve tried to find savings wherever possible. We’ve found cheaper suppliers. We’ve made the heating more efficient and reduced running costs. We’ve even reduced staffing costs. But it’s still not enough. Hence our reluctant decision to reduce some of the generous discounts we’ve previously offered local businesses and organisations.

Charitable Support and Financial Assistance

As an active local charity with a long history, we intend to continue supporting local charitable organisations, good causes and community groups wherever possible. For the Town Hall, this will mean offering financial support for qualifying groups and organisations, which can be used to reduce the cost of hiring the Town Hall if desired. Please contact or call 01488 686555 to find out more. 

Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000 

Hungerford Common, Lower Common and Freeman’s Marsh are subject to the Countryside & Rights of Way Act 2000. This means the following conditions apply:

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Rights and responsibilities

  • All dogs must be kept under close control and please clean up after your dog.
  • Within the Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000, the following activities are prohibited:
  • Driving motor vehicles, cycling, horse riding, camping, golf, hang/paragliding, ballooning,
  • use of metal detectors, organised games, flying model aircraft & drones.

Responsible behaviour

  • Please give consideration and respect for others and grazing livestock.
  • You must not light or cause fires, do damage, leave litter, disturb livestock or wildlife,
  • cut trees, shrubs or plants. You may not damage or remove wood, stone, plants or livestock.
  • Please take all litter home
  • Licensed Authority may be granted for organised activities only by the
  • Constable of the Town and Manor of Hungerford.
  • This is Private Property with Registered Commoners’ Rights.

Hungerford Fishery – General information, rules, etiquette & safety statement, for commoners, rods & guests

We care for and protect 5 miles of beautiful stretches of water in and around Hungerford, and to help preserve this precious natural habitat for future generations, we ask that you read and follow these guidelines:

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General information

1. The Hungerford Fishery is administered by, and is under the control of, the Trustees of the Town & Manor of Hungerford.

2. Fishing permissions are given to Rods on payment of Fees, Commoners based on rights of access granted, and Guests at the discretion of the Water Keeper.

3. Water Bailiffs, who are Commoner members of the Fishery Committee, have the authority to examine licences, baskets and flies to ensure conformance with the rules.

4. Rod subscriptions and Guest tickets are issued subject to the Commoners’ right of fishing on Mondays, Thursdays and Saturdays throughout the season.

5. Day tickets for guests of Rods and Commoners are available by application to the Hungerford Fishery Office. The annual number of guest tickets per Rod and the number of tickets issued per day are limited at the discretion of the Water Keeper. As the number of available tickets is restricted, Rods are recommended to apply well in advance, and are asked to give notice of cancellation as early as possible, at the latest on the eve of the nominated day, otherwise they will be charged.

6. Car parking space is available through the five-bar gate opposite the Shell Garage on the A4 and also at Denford, between the River Kennet Bridge and the River Dun. Rods wishing to fish Harvey’s Meadow may park in the lay-by on the A4. For access to the River Dun on Freeman’s Marsh there is space for a few cars on the roadside at the western access to Freeman’s Marsh opposite Cobbs Farm Shop.

7. Wild Brown Trout (WBT) are key in the development of the Fishery. We are encouraged by the rise in our protected WBT population, and we wish Rods and Commoners to join in our efforts by returning WBT to the water where possible throughout the Fishery. Freeman’s Marsh is an SSSI, (Site of Special Scientific Interest), where the objective is to man,age the River Dun specifically as a WBT River, thereby protecting and increasing the biodiversity of the River Dun corridor, thus increasing the populations of Brown Trout and Grayling.

Brown trout in Hungerford Town and Manor waters

Brown trout in Hungerford waters

8. Fishing for Grayling should be selective; shoals of Grayling should be targeted, please note that general fishing is not permitted. Grayling fishing is only allowed in clear water conditions.

9. Dogs may accompany their owners on sufferance but it is preferred that fishermen do not bring them to the riverbank. If they are brought along, they must be kept under strict control and not allowed to dig, hunt or enter the water. Dogs must not be taken into Dun Mill or Eddington Mill.

10. Safety considerations for fishermen and their guests. The Hungerford Fishery takes the safety of fishermen and their guests very seriously, and your attention is drawn to our safety statement. Please can you supply the Safety Statement so that I can attach it to this link

11. Public Liability; All Rods, Commoners and their guests acknowledge that the Trustees of the Town & Manor of Hungerford accept no responsibility for personal injuries received whilst on the Fishery or elsewhere on the Town & Manor’s proper, nor for any loss or damage to private or personal property. By exercising their fishing rights, Rods, Commoners and Guests acknowledge that they have read and accept the Rules and the Safety Statement (which contains useful co-ordinates for the emergency services, should you need their help).

Rules of Hungerford Fishery

1. The Trout and Grayling Fishing Season on the Hungerford Fishery opens 1st May, Trout fishing closes on the 30th September, whilst Grayling fishing closes on 31st December. No fishing is permitted before 9 o’clock in the morning or later than one hour after sunset.

2. A valid Environment Agency Fishing Licence must be held and on the person of all Rods, Commoners and their guests.

3. Guest tickets may only be obtained from the Hungerford Fishery Office. They are not transferable and are valid only on the specified day.

4. The Rules must be adhered to by all Rods and Commoners whose responsibility it is to ensure that their respective Guests are also familiar with the rules prior to fishing the Hungerford Fishery. Infringement of any of the Rules may lead to the withdrawal of fishing rights without compensation. The Honorary Secretary and the Trustees of the Town & Manor of Hungerford reserve the right to cancel any Rod Subscription or ticket without explanation.

5. An accompanied Guest may be allowed by Rods (but not Commoners) to fish in their stead not more than once a month, and subject to prior notification to the Water Keeper at the Fishery Office. Non-fishing Guests may accompany Fishermen, but may not enter Dun Mill or Eddington Mill.

6. Fishing is upstream only with a dry-fly. Nymph fishing is only permitted from 1st July.

7. Wet flies, Lures or Goldheads may not be used, and no hook is permitted larger than size 12 with a maximum shank length of 20mm (3/4”).

8. Barbless hooks shall be used at all times when fishing Freeman’s Marsh and when fishing for Grayling after the close of Trout fishing season. Any Rod, Commoner or Guest who does not intend to keep fish, should use barbless hooks.

9. Wading is not permitted, except on Freeman’s Marsh.

10. The maximum catch in any one day is four Brown or Rainbow Trout of Catchable size, i.e. 13” in length or 14oz in weight, whether returned or kept. Only two Trout can be taken from any one beat, except for the beat known as ‘Lower Meadow’. Any undersized Trout should be returned to the water as quickly as possible if undamaged and likely to survive. Undersized Trout and Grayling do not count towards the daily limit of four fish. Fishermen should leave the river after catching their daily limit.

11. Catch returns: To assist in effective restocking of the river, all Fishermen must complete, before leaving the fishery, an entry in the fishing log (nil returns included) on the river bank adjoining the A4 car park. It is the responsibility of Rods and Commoners to ensure that Guests’ returns are listed. In the event that a Fisherman forgets to complete the log, they are asked to contact the Water Keeper and provide a record of their day. For clarity it is requested that the entries are PRINTED clearly.

12. Fishing Restrictions

  • Cleared paths on the riverside should be used by Fishermen and Guests only; where a bank has not been cleared it is out of bounds.
  • Where access paths exist they should be used both when on the way to the river and when leaving it.
  • Freeman’s Marsh is considered to be one beat, see Rule 8 above re: use of barbless hooks.
  • War Memorial and Bridges: Fishing from the War Memorial site in Bridge Street or from any bridge carrying a public highway is prohibited.
  • Mill Hatch: Only Commoners may fish from the Mill Hatch lawn.
  • Dun Mill: Only Commoners may fish from the east side of Duffer’s Pool Bridge downstream to the Denford Road bridge.
  • Harvey’s Stream: Only Rods and their Guests may fish this stream.
  • Fishing Lodge: Fishing is not permitted from the north bank directly in front of the new fishing lodge.

13. Access Restrictions

  • There is no right of access accorded during the close season.
  • Eddington Mill: Fishermen should use the south bank of the Kennet above Eddington Bridge and the footbridge crossing the side-stream at Eddington Lake to gain access to the Draughts. If using the north bank route, the sign-posted pathway around the back of Eddington Mill and Eddington Lake must be carefully followed.
  • Dun Mill: The right of way through Dun Mill from the Black Ditch to the Lower Meadow is not to be used on Sundays.
  • Lower Meadow: Keys to the gates that provide access to the River Dun, for those unable to climb over the stiles, can be obtained from the Water Keeper.
  • The private drives to Eddington Mill and Dun Mill are out-of-bounds to all cars; there is no right of way for fishermen along the drive to Eddington Mill. Vehicles are not permitted on to the Lower Meadow.

14. Public Liability All Rods, Commoners and their guests acknowledge that the Trustees of the Town & Manor of Hungerford accept no responsibility for personal injuries received whilst on the Fishery or elsewhere on the Town & Manor’s property, nor for any loss or damage to private or personal property. By exercising their fishing rights, Rods, Commoners and Guests acknowledge that they have read and accept the Rules and the Safety Statement (which contains useful co-ordinates for the emergency services, should you need their help).

Etiquette on Chalk Stream Fishing

By the late Donald Macey – Honorary Fishery Manager 1974, 1988-1993

The basic rules and practices for chalk stream fishing are essential and should be understood and accepted by all, but agreement on the positive practices applicable to this fishing should be considered to be of more importance than rules forbidding certain practices. It is suggested that these positive practices are contained in the following sequence:

  1. The spotting of a fish feeding or liable to feed by its rise or by direct view.
  2. The decision whether it is a worthy quarry.
  3. The stalking of the fish so that it is not disturbed.
  4. The presentation of the fly or nymph so that it deceives the individual fish into thinking it is natural food.
  5. The removal of the fly or nymph, if not taken by the fish, as soon as it has passed the quarry.

All these apply equally to dry fly and to nymph fishing.

Consideration for other fellow fishermen

Enjoyment of fishing by us all can well be spoilt by thoughtless and selfish behaviour. The main causes are:

  1. Excessive crowding, cutting in upstream and hustling from below. A distance of at least 50 yards/45m upstream and 50 yards/45m downstream must be observed. When moving from one part of the river to another, please always use the access paths. If there are none, please keep as far away as possible from the water’s edge to avoid disturbing the fish, and always give maximum consideration to the activities of other fishermen.
  2. Walking up and down river casting blindly and repetitively, either nymph or fly, is not chalk stream fishing and should be reserved for other waters. Such fishing usually does little more than frighten and disturb the fish, and is totally banned on this fishery. Please fish selectively.
  3. Allowing Guests, Children and Partners who have no idea either of the rules or how to fish, to ‘have a go’ is against the rules and detrimental to the fishing of everyone else. Rods and Commoners are responsible for the behaviour of their Guests and only Guests of acceptable competence and experience are permitted. In no circumstances may the banks of the river be used as a playground.

The rules and the remarks written above are intended solely for the benefit of all of those who fish on the Hungerford Fishery. Please therefore respect and obey them without reservation.

It’s always worthwhile pausing to remember that the length of chalk stream fishing in Britain, and indeed the World, is very limited, and it must be considered a unique privilege to fish any chalk stream. In Fact, 90% of the world’s chalk streams are within 50 miles of Hungerford, as reported by the WWF. The Hungerford Fishery is perhaps one of the greatest, and is dedicated to the traditional recognised practices of chalk stream fishing, and to the belief that there’s a great deal more to the enjoyment of fishing than the catching of fish.

Safety Statement

The Town & Manor of Hungerford takes the safety of all fishermen (including Rods, Commoners and Guests) and Workers very seriously, and carries out regular risk assessments. 

  • There is always a risk when undertaking any activity near water, so we ask anyone using the fishery paths,stiles and bridges to take care, the risk of slipping will be greater after rain.
  • Please do not fish within 30 metres of any power cables.
  • Always wear eye protection when casting a fly or nymph, and be aware of others walking behind you, particularly if fishing on or near a public footpath.
  • If case of a serious medical condition, please carry a mobile phone with the emergency numbers and the OS co-ordinates of where you intend to fish. This is important as, for example, the Emergency Services will not know where the ‘Wine Cellar Bridge’ is!
  • We recommend that your tetanus protection is up-to-date and that you add a small first aid kit toyour tackle bag, so that minor cuts and abrasions can be covered, minimising the risk of Weils’ disease, which can be caught through open wounds.
  • These recommendations are for your safety. Please remember that safety is largely a matter of common sense andawareness of one’s own surroundings.
  • If you see anything of concern regarding health and safety on the Hungerford Fishery, please report it to the Water Keeper or Fishery Manager immediately, so that we may deal with it appropriately.

Emergency phone numbers   
Rob Starr (Water Keeper)
Mob 07747 866075
Home 1488 683114

Peter Joseph (Fishery Manager)
Mob 07500 331800
Fishery office 01488 685039

Town & Manor Office
01488 6850815

Hungerford Doctors Surgery 
Tel 01488 682036

Location    Coordinates 
Eddington Bridge 51 25’25.5 N
1  30’34.80 W
Draughts 51 25’25.5 N
1 30’56.19 W
Bracket Hatch 51 24’51.46 N
1 30’01.24 W
Wine Cellar 51 24’58.01 N
1 30’31.50 W
Lower Meadow 51 24’42.38 N
129’26.27 W

The risk assessment policy is held by the Clerk at the Town Hall, with a copy held by the Water Keeper, should you wish to read it in full.

Download the General Information, Rules, Etiquette and Safety Statement for Commoners, Rods & Guests

The Town & Manor of Hungerford & Liberty of Sanden Fee is regulated by a scheme of the Charity Commissioners – No. 238, 379 A/4

Links to third-party websites

This website contains hyperlinks to websites operated by parties other than the Town & Manor of Hungerford.

Any such websites are provided for your reference only. The Town & Manor does not control these websites and is not responsible for their content.

The Town & Manor‘s inclusion of any hyperlinks to such websites does not imply any endorsement of the material on such websites, nor any association with those operating the sites.

Personal and non-commercial use limitation

This web site is for your personal and non commercial use. You may not modify, copy, distribute, transmit, display, perform, reproduce, publish, license, create, derivative works from, transfer, or sell any information, software, products or services obtained from this web site.

Copyright and Trademark notices

All contents of this website are Copyright 2017 Town & Manor of Hungerford Charity No 238, 379 A/4. All rights reserved.

Liability Disclaimer

The information, software, products and services published on this web site may include inaccuracies or typographical errors. Changes may take place periodically that may add to the information herein. There may be improvements or changes in this website at any time. The Town & Manor makes no representation about the suitability of the information, software, products and services contained on this website for any purpose that they shall use.

Hungerford Common

Common Port Down, Hungerford Town and Manor

The perfect place to enjoy a picnic, walk your dog, exercise, or simply sit and enjoy the views and wildlife. Hungerford Common, or Common Port Down to give one of its many other names, is 220 acres (89 hectares) of ancient common land, permanent pasture, mature trees, canal and strip lynchets, to the east of Hungerford.

View across Hungerford Common showing lone dog walker, and in the distance, a passing train - Town and Manor - photo by Tony Bartlett

Wide open space to think, walk, watch the natural wildlife – photo by Tony Bartlett

Common Rights have been preserved here for more than six centuries, protecting the land from development since at least Edward III (1312-1377).

Today Hungerford Common is used by both Commoners and Farmers, who buy rights from the Town & Manor to graze cattle, and by all for recreation, relaxation and local events, such as the Hungerford Harey 8 running race and the visiting fair. Look out for our Guided Trailer Rides and Walks, in Don’t Miss.

Cricket on the Common Port Down, Hungerford Town and Manor, photo by Tony Bartlett

Cricket on the Common – photo by Tony Bartlett

Leasing part of the Common

Part of the Common is set aside for the Cricket and Football Clubs, children’s play area and the War Memorial Ground. This was made possible by the Commoners agreeing, in 1951, not to exercise their rights for 99 years (the duration of the lease).

The ancient roots of the Common’s name

The ‘Port Down’ part of the Common Port Down’s name comes from the Saxon and French word ‘porte’ for a door or gate, and the Saxon ‘dun’ for a hill. There are still gates at all entrances to the Common, from Kintbury, Hungerford Park Street, and the roads out towards Denford and Inkpen.

Cows on the Common during the grazing season - photo by Tony Bartlett - Town and Manor of Hungerford

Cows on the Common during the grazing season – photo by Tony Bartlett

Grazing cattle on Hungerford Common

Both Commoners and Farmers, who buy rights to graze their cattle from the Town & Manor, produce a summer grazing herd of about 175 store cattle. These are raised either for beef production, or as dairy herd replacements.

Grazing cattle also has the benefit of helping to maintain the permanent pasture and keep the trees in shape.

A great location for events

Large open space annual events are limited to one major and three to four minor events each year. The income from hiring the space, and the sale of grazing rights, contributes to the cost of maintaining the Common.

Cows take it easy, over the ancient strip lynchets (horizontal stripes in the common) with the Down Gate visible in the background

Grants and subsidies

The Town & Manor is considered by government to be a farm, and each year applications are made to Natural England to support the maintenance of the area for the long-term protection of the plants, trees and shrubs, pasture, birds and animals that inhabit the area.

Protected from development by law

Through the centuries there have been many attempts to obtain the land and rights for private benefit. Today, Hungerford Common is registered under the Commons Registration Act 1965 and the Countryside, Rights of Way and Wildlife Acts 2000/04. The management is operated within the constraints of these laws, with details posted on six signs at the various entrance gates.