The Forest of Dean.

Hopewell Mine




Hopewell Colliery

See the Forest from below.

The Free Mining traditions, unique to the Forest of Dean, dates back many hundreds of years. It allows a miner born in the Hundred of St. Briavels (broadly the area of the Forest) and who has worked for a year and a day in a local mine, to work a claim or "gale" in the Forest. There are now only a handful of Freeminers left.
Hopewell Colliery is a working free-mine and makes a lovely visit which gives you a flavour of the working conditions in one of the better and less hazardous mines. Along the Cinderford-Speech House-Coleford road, quite close to Coleford, you will see the pit-head and a very reasonable car-park. There is a café and a souvenir shop in case you have to wait for the next party to be assembled to accompany you in your visit.

As you leave the car-park you cannot help but notice the gigantic wheel that pulled the cables for the cage and trucks.


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