I was very pleased to have been invited to attend the Verderers Court recently. Verderers have been located within the Forest of Dean in some shape or form since the 13th Century and continue to play an important community role today. The Verderers hold their court at the spectacular Speech House Hotel near Coleford. I have visited the Speech House Hotel many times before and they offer a great dining and accommodation experience.
We covered a range of important issues covering the statutory forest during the court session. This included an update from Mr Kevin Stannard, Deputy Surveyor of the Forest of Dean, on the current efforts to control the number of wild boar within the forest. I was pleased to hear, although work still needs to be done, things are now looking more positive than they have been in previous years. We also discussed the condition of the deer, commoning and Freemining within the Forest.
At the meeting, the Senior Verderer, Mr R.W.Jenkins JP, presented me with a copy of “The Verderers and Forest Laws of Dean” by Cyril Hart. This interesting book covers the history of the Verderers and the peculiarities of Forest Law.
I was very pleased to attend this session of the court and I am grateful to the Verderers for extending their invitation.