In June 1860 the Manor of Rickmansworth was put up for sale. The advertisement for the sale stated that the Manor included “The Lord’s Interest in an extensive and Valuable Common called Chorley Wood Common”. The Manor was purchased by John Saunders Gilliat, who thus gained the ownership of the Common. On 30th October 1861 Gilliat also purchased the Cedars Estate, which then comprised a large mansion and outbuildings and about 637 acres of land, of which about 591 acres were farmland including Wyatts Farm, Apple Tree Farm, Penn Farm, Hall Farm, Longhill Farm and Catlips Farm. He demolished the old mansion and built a larger and grander one, the present Cedars House.
J.S. Gilliat dies in 1912 and left the Cedars Estate to his son Babington Gilliat, who sold it in 1914 to the Darvells.
In 1917 Sir James Henly Batty bought the Cedars Estate from the Darvells for £40,000 and with it acquired the Lordship of the Manor and the Common. His wife, Lady Violet, did not like the Cedars and they moved to Meeting House Farm, which they renamed the Manor House. The Cedars mansion and 50 acres of land were given by J.H. Batty to the RNIB and converted into a school for blind girls.
The rest of the Estate, some 600 acres, was sold to the Metropolitan Railway Country Estate who began the development of Chorleywood. Batty retained the Lordship of the Manor and the Common.
In 1921, J.H. Batty wished to give the Common to Chorleywood Urban District Council as a memorial to those men of Chorleywood who fell in the Great War.
In order for the Common to be given separately from the Lordship of the Manor it was necessary for the UDC to take on the powers of a Parish Council under Section 18, subsections 1(h) and (i) of the Local Government Act 1894 and these powers were duly confirmed by order of the Ministry of Health on 11th April 1921, enabling the UDC to accept the gift of the Common for the benefit of the inhabitants of the Parish of Chorleywood. The Lordship of the Manor of Rickmansworth went to Rickmansworth Urban District Council.
The Common remained in the possession of the Urban District Council until that Council was dissolved under the new system of local government introduced in 1973. Under the terms of the new Local Government Act, the Common was then formally transferred to Chorleywood Parish Council in January 1974.