The Forest of Dean Greenways, an impressive new network of horse riding trails across the Forest of Dean is now open.
These routes link up new bridleways, existing Public Rights of Way, Forestry Commission tracks and quiet country lanes to form a series of inter-connected circuits for horse riders, leisure cyclists and walkers and, where possible, carriage drivers.
Four linked Greenway circuits have been created, extending from Dymock in the north of the district to Blakeney and Yorkley in the south, and they connect up with many local towns, villages and rural businesses as well as with accommodation providers, tourist attractions and equestrian centres in order to maximise the project’s benefit to the local economy.
The four Greenway routes comprise:
- The Dymock Forest Greenway
- The Huntley Woods Greenway
- The Hope Wood Greenway
- The Blakeney Greenway and Carriage Driving Circuit
The most southerly, and the longest section of this network, the Blakeney Greenway and Carriage Driving Circuit, is a spectacular twelve and a half mile long figure of eight horse riding and carriage driving route which is almost entirely off-road and is also suitable for para-carriage drivers.
This project has been undertaken by the Forest of Dean and District Horse Riders’ and Carriage Drivers’ Association (FODADHRACDA), a group of local people who set out as far back as 2005 to improve the fragmented Higher Rights of Way network in the Forest of Dean district and to secure greater access to the Gloucestershire countryside. It is the only project of its kind in the UK to have been delivered by a voluntary organisation.
www.fodgreenways.co.uk – to find out more.
The project was officially launched at the start of the Blakeney Greenway and Carriage Driving Circuit by Heather Clatworthy, Senior Executive, Access and Rights of Way Department at the British Horse Society.