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Bishops fish pond amidst stunning heathland and abundant wildlife

Frensham Little Pond and Great Pond were originally created in the 13th century, to supply fish to the Bishop of Winchester and his court, whilst visiting Farnham Castle. Today the pond and surrounding area is a sanctuary for wildlife with always something new to see.

Around the pond you can spot many common and rare birds, such as reed bunting, sedge warbler and great crested grebe, as well as nightjars and woodlarks. There are damselflies and dragonflies darting over the glistening water in warmer months, and the banks of the pond are fringed with a multitude of yellow iris, purple loose-strife and common reeds.

The heathland is a colourful mosaic of purple heathers, fragrant bright yellow gorse and rich green bracken. There are ancient gnarled oaks and pines to be found scattered across the site, and many footpaths to explore.

Frensham is internationally important for the variety of rare and endangered wildlife that thrive on the heath and is a Site of Special Scientific Interest, a Special Protection Area and a Special Area of Conservation. The Common and Great Pond are leased to and managed by Waverley Borough Council.

Bird watch - look out for the tree pipit

Our birds are busy making their nests and are all a-twitter - see if you can spot a tree pipit. They’re strikingly visible from mid-April, when the male flies up steeply from a tree and parachutes down with its wings raised and tail spread. It also sings a song of far reaching repeated notes...

Stop for a treat at our Tern café

When you’re out and about schedule in a break at our café - savour warming cups of tea and treat yourself to a light snack.

Sit by the pond and watch the visiting wildlife too. Who can you spot today?

Bright spring breaks away

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Enjoy a few days away at Frensham Common Cottage (sleeps 5).

Delight in refreshing walks across the common and return to our cosy, quiet cottage.

Bright spring breaks away

Emley Farmhouse lies deep in the Surrey Hills © John Millar

Escape to Emley Farmhouse (sleeps 10) - a Grade II listed property full of character and history.

Set in an idyllic rural setting it’s the perfect retreat for families and friends.

Start your 50 things adventure

50 things to do 

An outdoor adventure is always around the next tree or our pond. And our list of 50 things to do before you’re 11 ¾ will set you on your own adventure here.

Try one or two of our adventures...

50 things to do 

  • Make a trail with sticks
  • Create some wild art
  • Hunt for bugs
  • Track wild animals
  • Go bird watching

See more of the Surrey Hills

Just south of London, the beautiful Surrey Hills stretch from the Kent border in the east to the Hampshire border in the west. Tranquillity and wonderful open spaces just waiting to be discovered…

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Discover more about the Surrey Hills by following us on Facebook - news, projects, wildlife and trivia too...