Forest of Dean & Wye Valley Tour guides deliver talks in all sorts of far-flung locations, normally in Gloucestershire, Herefordshire, and Gwent. We were delighted, however, to be invited into Oxfordshire to address the Lechlade Gardening Club. The group asked for a talk on the Forest’s two great rivers, the Severn and the Wye. The talk took place minutes away from the source of another great river — the Thames.
While the Thames may be more famous, the Severn is longer and more likely to be “vigorous”, to say the least. The talk included details of the Great Flood of 1607 which is still being debated. Tsunami, or very bad weather? The talk also made reference to Samuel Pepys’ visit, Civil War events in Newnham, the importance of Lydney Harbour, and other stories. Although an hour could easily be filled with tales of the Severn alone, the talk also contained tales of the Forest’s other great river, the Wye.
The Wye is famous for being the birthplace of British tourism, or the first “staycations” in the mid-18th century. It also has the birthplace of King Henry V, or Henry Monmouth, famous for his stunning victory at Agincourt. A famous ghostly event took place during the civil war at Goodrich Castle, by the Wye.
And not one mention of the Thames!