Bream Heritage Walk

New Freemine

A new mine is being opened near Little Drybrook.

The Forest of Dean has a unique Freemining tradition. Custom has it that the right to freemine was given to Forest miners by Edward 1 for services given during his Scottish campaigns. This was probably confirming a right they already held as early as 1244.

To be a registered freeminer today a miner has to be over 21, born and live within the Hundred of St Briavels, and to have worked for a year and a day in a Forest mine.

This new mine is not far from the one that used to be at China Bottom on the Bream Heritage Walk near way mark No14. It will mine the same coal seams, and keep alive the ancient mining traditions of the Forest.