Severn & Wye Railway Vol. 5 Lydney Docks
The casual visitor to the Forest of Dean will no doubt find it a pleasant, though unassuming, area in which to escape the pressures of everyday life, the absence of splendour in the landscape being more than compensated for by the tranquillity to be found in its lush and gentle greenwood. The more observant traveller may, however, perceive places where the rough scars of man’s work interrupt the natural contours of the land, and pathways whose alignment and earthworks betray their former purpose. In fact the Forest was once a rather different place to that promoted today by the Wyedean Tourist Board. Its dense, leafy canopy concealed a rich mineral wealth which was known and exploited as far back as Roman times, reaching a peak around the turn of the twentieth century. Ambitious traders, anxious to convey their hard-won products to the markets of the outside world promoted and built a network of tramroads and, later, railways which were to play a vital role in the area’s rise to industrial prominence. Volume 1 of this series traced the history of the Severn & Wye & Severn Bridge Railway, the major independent concern in the Forest of Dean, and illustrated the ‘main line’ from Lydney to Parkend. Volume 2 continued the journey to Cinderford. Volume 3 covered the branches to Lydbrook Junction and to Coleford whilst Volume 4 dealt with the Mineral Loop and all of the collieries connected thereto. This Volume looks at all facets of the harbour at Lydney where the vast majority of Forest coal was transshipped into small coasting vessels for shipment to Bristol, round the coast of the West Country and to Ireland.
Hardback, 208 pages, black & white photographs, drawings, maps
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