The Forest of Dean has been around for at least 35,000 years and there has never been a children's history book about it - until now!
It's taken me two years to research, write and source pictures, helped by a superb community of local people interested in history, plus special Foresters including Freeminers, Verderers, The Deputy Surveyor and officers of The Forestry Commission.
The Forest has a simply amazing history - here's the book's blurb to give you a taste:
The book includes a timeline of the Forest's past plus themed sections covering significant parts of its history:
- Roman invasion
- A royal hunting ground
- Iron making
- Coal mining
- Riots, crime and punishment
And much more. The spreads have been beautifully designed by Sarah Fountain:
The book has over 200 illustrations and photos - included many old images sourced by the FoD Local History Society who published the book.
The aim of the book was to provide a high-quality resource for schools in the area to use when studying local history. Forest teachers will be delighted that each local primary is being given 10 free copies. Additional books are being given to secondaries and Forest libraries too.
The book has illustrations by Ursula Hurst, including a wonderful large map of the Forest today. I even did a couple of pictures myself!
The Story of the Forest is aimed at KS2 children (ages 7-11) but is certainly not just for schools. My hope is that it will enthuse local people of all ages, and families in particular, to take an interest in this very special hidden corner of the UK.
Many thanks to all those who helped make this book possible.
It can be bought online from the FoD Local History Soc here (price £8).