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 Local History

Blakeney Forest of Dean

Laying on the western side of the Forest of Dean is Coleford. It is the Forest's administrative centre for both local government and the Forestry Commission. Within easy reach are our many popular attractions and the Wye Valley, Symond's Yat, Ross-On-Wye, Tintern and Monmouth are all within a ten mile radius. Here you will discover some of the locations used for Starwars, Merlin, Harry Potter and Dr Who when you visit Puzzlewood and Clearwell Caves.

Looking around our town you will easily find the Great Western Railway Museum, the King's Head public house - the scene of fighting during the Battle of Coleford between the Cavaliers and Roundheads in 1643, and the Angel where 19th century rioter Warren James was taken in 1831, and mounted police strike-breakers were billeted in the 1920s.

Local mural artist Tom Cousins, who already has his work displayed around Coleford, was commissioned by the Town Council to create a mural on a wall at Mushet Walk depicting David and Robert Mushet the local ironmasters.

Robert Forester Mushet (1811–1891) was a British metallurgist and businessman, born on 8 April 1811, at Coleford. He was the youngest son of Scottish parents, Agnes Wilson, formerly of the Clyde, Alfreton and Whitecliff Ironworks.

In 1819 David Mushet built the foundry at Darkhill. Robert Mushet spent his formative years studying metallurgy with his father and took over the management of Darkhill in 1845. In 1848 he moved to the newly constructed Forest Steel Works on the edge of the Darkhill site where he carried out over ten thousand experiments in ten years before moving to the Titanic Steelworks in 1862.

In 1876 he was awarded the Bessemer Gold Medal by the Iron and Steel Institute, their highest award for developing an inexpensive way to make high quality steel while perfecting the Bessemer Process and inventing the first commercially produced steel alloy.



old street map of coleford,forest of dean

When Coleford had a railway station.

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