This is the right to cut birch, willow and alder for use on the "ancestral hearth". Estovers can only be granted to the original dwelling registered at the time of the Commons Registration Act 1965. The cutting of estovers is governed by Bye-Law 24 which gives the Conservators power to set aside areas for cutting and to prohibit the use of other areas.
Any Commoner wanting estovers should ensure they are added to the wood permit list. Contact the Ashdown Forest Centre (01342 823583) in late October or early November. The Ranger will then agree a site which is consistent with conservation, convenient for the Commoner and unlikely to annoy local residents. The cutter must be suitably insured and a copy of cover will be required by the Ranger. More information will be posted on the home page in the run up to wood permitting season.
Each Commoner is entitled to 2 cords of wood (1 cord is a stack of wood 4' x 4' x 8'/1.25m x 1.25m x 2.50m). Trees must be felled as close to the ground as possible and toppings stacked to rot down. Cutting sites must be left clean and tidy. Bye-Law 24(c) states that in the interest of the quietude of the Forest, power saws are not permitted to be used on a Sunday. All commonable wood must be cleared off the Forest by the end of March. Vehicles must not be taken onto the Forest when the ground is wet. Once the Commoner's have taken their wood the list is opended to non-Commoners.