Sledging on North Down

Top Resources

Car Park Opening Times

CURRENT:  Winter opening:
late October - mid February:  8am - 5pm

Spring opening:
mid February - end April      8am - 6pm

Summer opening:
beg May - late October    8am - 8pm

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Bag it and Bin it!

There are nine bins for dog waste dotted around the site, and these are emptied by our contractor twice a week. The contract does not include picking up "stray" poo from the paths - we rely on responsible owners to bag and bin it themselves.

Courtesy of DogsTrust: "Scooper Hero" poster competition winner

Thank you for taking the time to place your own dog's poo in these bins, and thus helping to keep the paths clear for all visitors.

25 years on - how it began

The project started in 1989 when the land came on the market; the price of the land was £327,000. The Magog Trust was formed, and purchased the land in September 1989; it then initiated a programme of reclamation and development for long term conservation and recreation.
... Now, with average annual expenditure in the region of £90,000, continued support is required so that the work goes on...For much more on the history and background, go to 'About'

User Survey Summary

In July 2014 we surveyed visitors one weekday morning between 8am and 10.30am. During this period:

  • 42 visitors (cars) were logged
  • 38 of these were dog walkers
  • all but 2 were regular visitors
  • only 12 of the dog walkers were Members or Friends.

We would like all regular visitors to Magog Down to help contribute to the costs of upkeep by either becoming a Friend or, if they prefer, just making a donation. This form allows you to do either. Thank you.

Snow returns to Magog Down!

For the first time in nearly five years, this part of the world had a lighty covering of snow and the locals were quick to take advantage of Magog Down's handy hill for some snowy Sunday fun on their sledges.

snow_10dec2017_crop_453North Down swarming with happy sledgers, Sunday 10th December.
Photo by Kathleen Foreman.

Annual General Meeting

magoglogo2_60The Annual General Meeting of the Magog Trust was held on Saturday 21st October 2017, at the Johnson Hall, Gog Magog Way, Stapleford.

The AGM was preceded by a very interesting presentation on “The Flora of Magog Down” by Claire and Nick Beale.  The mandatory business of the AGM then followed. All resolutions were passed, and the full accounts and report for the year accepted. This can now be downloaded below:

Full Report and Accounts

Annual Review 2017

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The meeting provided a joyous reunion for four former Wandlebury Rangers, pictured here together, left to right: Bill Clark, Nick Beale, Jon Gibbs, Claire Beale.


 

 

Flora and Fungi get expert assessment

yellowmignonette_clusteredbellflower_238We were pleased that the Cambridge Natural History Society paid a visit to Magog Down in early August. To read about what species they found, and what this tells them about the quality of our grasslands, read their report here.

Photo shows clustered bellflower and spikes of pale yellow mignonette, in Colin's Paddock. Photo by Bryan Davies, July 2017.

Second Dog Exercise Area now open

dogs_fairfield_250A section of the North Down near to the car park has been newly fenced off in order to create a second area for off-lead exercise for dogs.  For the time being, a short section of the familiar perimeter path nearby will now be closed off to allow recovery.

We hope our many dog walking visitors enjoy this variation, to complement the existing Fair Field area which has become so popular.  Explanatory map and more details in our News article.

Magog Down – a unique area for restoration and conservation

The Magog Down is an area for restoration, conservation and informal recreation on the Gog Magog Hills just south of the boundary of the City of Cambridge, off the A1307 road to Linton and on Haverhill Road, Stapleford.

Magog Down is owned and managed by the Magog Trust who bought it in 1989. It covers 163.5 acres of previously intensively farmed arable land. It is freely open to all, all year round.

It has two meadows sown with wild flowers and grasses native to chalk grassland. Six woods, planted between 1990 and 1992, with 24,000 native British trees. It is seeing the return of ground-nesting birds, like the skylark, and native flowering plants like the cowslip...read more

A community space for all to enjoy

Some of the activities enjoyed at the Magog Down include:

  • Fun for all the family - From flying kites and picnics in the summer to the toboggan runs of winter, the Down is just the place for a family day out all year round
  • Health & recreation - Whether out for a stroll, a walk with the dog or a slightly more energetic jog, the rolling fields and stunning views make this the perfect setting.
  • Flora and fauna - With a wealth of native trees, shrubs, meadow grasses, flowers and associated wild life, this restoration area is a must whether you are a keen amateur or a seasoned enthusiast.
  • Agricultural use - About one-third of the land is farmed under a standard arable crop rotation by contractors. Sheep are grazed in the paddocks on the South Down. Part of the site is managed under Entry Level Stewardship and part under Higher Level Stewardship under the guidance of Natural England.This helps in the overall aim of the project - to recreate a chalk grassland typical of more than a century ago.

Follow us on Twitter

larrybird2_60We now have a Twitter account, you can follow us there for news and updates.

Bird Group meeting

The next meeting of the Stapleford Bird Club will be on Saturday 6th January.

Meet in the car park at 8.30am. If the weather is very poor, it may be delayed until the next Saturday. All welcome, sorry no dogs.

Other News Highlights

Sponsor the Boardwalk

giftaidappicon_60The Jane's Piece Boardwalk is hailed as a welcome addition, and we invite donations  read more...


Counting Butterflies

commonblues_mating_60Detailed results of the latest butterfly monitoring and method used are now available read more...


Ash Dieback update

ash_dieback_thumbnail_60This disease has swept East to West across Europe, affecting the woods in Magog Down read more...


The Big Scoop

big_scoop_logo_60Volunteers collected un-bagged dog poo, and why you should NOT "Stick and Flick" it here! read more...


Woodland Thinning

woods_for_webagm_square_60Upper Memorial Wood undertook its programmed thinning in January read more...


Countryside Code reminder

countrysidecodelogo2_60In November we reminded visitors about "keeping dogs under effective control" read more...

Join us

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It costs around £60,000 per year to maintain the accessible parts of Magog Down, including the Ranger service, twice-weekly dog-bin emptying, regular grass cutting, fence and gate repairs, and forestry activities (not counting the cost of farming our arable section).

Grants and investment income do not fully meet these costs, so the Magog Trust looks for additional support from each visitor to the Down. Please become a Friend to help us look after this special piece of countryside, year after year.
 

NOT US, BUT NEARBY:
"The Gog": Farm Shop and Cafè

Sitting on the A1307 opposite the turning to Magog Down is The Gog Farm Shop and café where you are welcome to have a rest and a drink.

This neighbouring business is totally separate from Magog Down, despite Google sometimes conflating the two!