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The Forest of Dean by H. G. Nicholls

It appears that the parishes or tithings of Westbury


Name of Houses. Previous Between Since "Walk." to 1787. 1787 and 1812. 1812. A. R. P. A. R. P. A. R. P. Worcester 404 324 1 38 160 2 3 0 1 19 Park End 304 473 0 18 43 3 34 14 2 6 Blakeney 249 180 2 25 62 0 35.5 2 0 9.5 Little 196 174 1 6 104 0 33 4 3 26 Dean Speech 0 2 7 House Ruerdean 290 353 0 26 199 3 36 2 1 11 Hillier's 17 5 3 39 1 2 22 Lane Yorkley 2 1 0 0 0 1 18 Lane --- ----- ----- --- ---- ---- --- ---- ---- ---- 1462 1510 2 32 573 0 10.5 24 2 9.5

During the greater part of September this year the Dean Forest Commissioners were engaged either at Newnham, Westbury, or the Speech-house hearing

evidence "as to forming the Forest into a Parish," and respecting "Rights of Common." With the design of eliciting the opinions of the neighbourhood on the first head, for civil purposes only, "a circular was drawn up on the subject of enclosing lands on the outward boundaries of the Forest, with a view of relieving the conterminous parishes from the support of the Forest poor." It was sent to the parishes bordering on the Forest, requesting the attendance of the clergymen, overseers, and landowners, for the purpose of discussing such a plan. This courteous invitation was responded to by the parish authorities of Westbury, Flaxley, Little Dean, Mitcheldean, Awre, Staunton, Ruerdean, the Lea hamlet, Bicknor, and St. Briavel's, the Rev. H. Berkin attending on the part of the Forest clergy, when the scheme of the Commissioners was unanimously approved. By the evidence taken under the second head, it appears that the parishes or tithings of Westbury, Little Dean, Awre, Ruerdean, Bicknor, Lea hamlet, Breem, Clearwell, Newland, Lydney, St. Briavel's, Newnham, Woolaston, and Purton, claimed the right of Common of Pasture.

In the same month "the Free Miners of the Forest" presented to the Commissioners an able memorial of their rights, in reply to that preferred the year before by persons not free miners, but who were proprietors and occupiers of coal and iron mines in the Forest; its object being to prove that "foreigners possessing and working mines therein was in direct violation of the rights and privileges of the free miners, contrary to their customs and franchises,


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