THE group which looks after popular common land in Herefordshire says it has faced verbal abuse from dog walkers.

The Bromyard Downs Commons Association said there had been some fierce criticism to work carried out on the land.

In a report to the Brockhampton Group Parish Council, the association, which works to look after the Downs, said all work to cut brushwood was carried out under strict guidelines.

In the report for the September 15 meeting, the association said: "There have been some complimentary comments received by the volunteers for the work on the Downs.

"There has also been some verbal abuse by dog walkers and others complaining about the cutting of brushwood and disturbing the nesting birdlife.

"The response to each is that they are informed that the Downs are managed within strict guidelines under the agreed management plan."

The work was carried out over the summer by volunteers, with paths across the Downs cleared to allow for access for all, ponds cleared, dead trees removed and other general improvements.

The volunteers meet for three days each month and carry out their activities following a detailed sub-plan, the report added.

This sub-plan is in line with the Bromyard Downs Commons Association management plan and the stewardship scheme.

The report also said that a new toposcope, giving the direction and distance to other landmarks, had been been installed and had "proven popular with walkers".