The Chiltern Society is a long-established charity whose members work to care for the Chiltern Hills, protecting and promoting their special features and history. One of the oldest, and largest regional amenity charities in the UK, the Society was set up in 1965 and has over 6,500 members.
The Society's area covers 650 square miles including the whole of the Chilterns AONB plus some adjacent parts of Oxfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Hertfordshire and Bedfordshire, including towns like High Wycombe, Hemel Hempstead and Luton.
The aims of the Chiltern Society are:
The Society's aims are very strongly aligned with those of the Chilterns Conservation Board and the two organisations work closely together. The Board is a statutory public body, with responsibility for discharging the duty of local and central government to conserve and enhance the nationally-protected Chilterns AONB. Its 27 members are all drawn from local communities. Local people can also support the Chiltern Society which is a voluntary membership organisation representing grassroots - the many local people who care strongly for this beautiful area.
Examples of how the Society and the Board are working together include: developing and promoting walking and cycling routes, promoting good building design through the annual Buildings Design Awards, conserving historic commons, monitoring the health of local chalk streams and fighting the threat of the HS2 high speed rail line.
The Chiltern Society offers many opportunities to get involved in caring for and enjoying the Chilterns countryside. Regular walks and bike rides are organised. There are also a number of interest groups offering active volunteer roles such as footpath maintenance, conservation work on wildlife sites, monitoring of planning applications, photography group and so on. You are also very welcome to be an 'armchair member' - enjoying benefits like the Society's regular colour magazine full of articles and news.