Our Vision

The Forest of Dean is a rare cultural landscape. An entwined and tangled landscape where the people, industry and wildlife have evolved, declined and thrived together – rooted in the ground, the geology – where the minerals beneath our feet are our rocks, to be won by our people – the Freeminers of the Forest of Dean. This is a cultural landscape in which the Crown has battled with the commoners for centuries – land stolen by squatters and ignored so long as the iron flowed and the coal was dug. A tangled landscape where the Forest of Dean commoners run sheep, widely held to be an uncommonable animal, on land that is not a common. Our Dean is a forest, and our people are Foresters – this is our place, the Foresters’ Forest – the Forest of Dean.

The aim of Foresters’ Forest HLF Landscape Partnership Programme is to raise awareness and participation in the built, natural and cultural heritage within our Forest.  By focussing on what makes it special, we want to learn about our Forest and to share that knowledge with our friends, neighbours and visitors. We need to channel that knowledge and expertise into a renewed vigour and vibrancy, a renewed love and respect for the natural environment, our built and industrial heritage, and a renewed respect for and engagement with those who carry on our unique traditions.

Bluebells by Rosie Kelsall

photo credit: Rosie Kelsall

Legacy & Sustainability

Naturally it is important that we consider what will happen at the end of the 7 year HLF funded period from the very outset.  As there will be a definite end to the funding, every project will be building legacy and sustainability into their project plans.