Downley Common conservation area
Downley Common is a large conservation area centred on part of the village of Downley, and the large common to the north of it. It was designated in 1986 and extended in 1995. The common was one of the traditional Chilterns Heaths, essential in the past as upland pasture for cattle and on one of the main drovers routed through the Chilterns. Large areas of grassland remain, but the common also has areas of woodland and scrub, and the relief is uneven, with dewponds in places.
The buildings that line the edge of the common area typical Victorian artisans cottages. Additionally there are areas of common encroachment, particularly along the tracks that crisscross the open space. An enclave of Victorian dwellings is located to the north, tucked away from the main village and hidden from view. In the woodland lie small historic cottages, whilst later 1930s houses line the track side.
The western part of the conservation area covered land and buildings at Downley farm, now converted to dwellings. This is a traditional farmyard complex of large red tiled timber framed barns and an 18th century farmhouse.
There are 15 listed buildings within the conservation area.