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Why do we consider Friday 13th to be an unlucky day?

Comments Off on Why do we consider Friday 13th to be an unlucky day? Written on September 12th, 2019 by
Categories: Forest of Dean Attractions
Why do we consider Friday 13th to be an unlucky day?

Why do we have a phobia about Friday 13th?

To many people, Friday the 13th is something to be very wary about. If something is going to go wrong, you can bet, it will happen on Friday, the thirteenth day of the month.

This isn’t true. Of course, it isn’t but many people would argue otherwise. But where did such a superstition come from? Why Friday? and why the thirteenth?

There are many stories concerning that day and that date. One such theory goes back to biblical times and the last supper. Legend has it that Judas Iscariot was the thirteenth guest at the last supper. This was held on a Thursday ( Maundy Thursday) and Jesus was taken away and crucified on Friday. Thus the 13th + Friday.

For the best explanation, we have to go back in time to France.

Why is Friday the 13th so unlucky?

The Knights Templar – who were they?

The Poor Fellow-Soldiers of Christ and of the Temple of Solomon, also known as the Order of Solomon’s Temple, the Knights Templar or simply the Templars, were a Catholic military order recognised in 1139 by the papal bull Omne datum optimum

What happened on Friday 13th 1307?

At dawn on Friday, October 13, 1307, scores of French Templars were simultaneously arrested by agents of King Philip of France, later to be tortured in locations such as the tower at Chinon, into admitting heresy and other sacrilegious offences in the Order. Then they were put to death.

Many reasons were given for the treachery of Philip and Pope Clement V. Money is thought to have been one factor. The Knights Templars were both soldiers and Monks, they were also bankers. It is taken as a matter of fact that the Templars invented what is, today’s modern banking system.

The Templars had accrued vast wealth over many years. They were originally formed to protect the pilgrims who visited the holy land.

After the Holy Land was re-conquered by Saladin, the Templars went into decline.

May rumours surrounded the order. One was that they worshipped the severed and preserved head of John the Baptist. Other ‘crimes’ they were arrested and tortured for included homosexual acts, spitting on the cross, treason and a number of other trumped-up charges.

In the end, they were mostly killed by being burned as heretics and traitors. Many were put to death in Paris.

What was the Templar Curse

The Grand Master of the Knights Templar Jaques de Molay was burnt at the stake. While burning on the pyre, De Molay cursed King Philip IV of France, his descendants, Pope Clement V, and everyone else who supported his death. De Molay said that within a year and a day, Clement V and Philip IV would die. He also said Philip’s bloodline would reign in France no more.

As it transpired, both Pope Clement and King Philip were dead soon after. Between 1314 and 1328 the three sons and grandsons of King Philip died, thus ending 300 years of the house of Caped.

As far as Friday the 13th superstition and paranoia go, I rather like the story of the Knights Templar. Mind you, people also avoid cracks in the pavement, walking under ladders, crossing a black cat and a list of other phobias.

There are many Knights Templar sites dotted around France and other European countries. A French nobleman Hugh de Payens visited England 1128 to raise men and money for the Crusade, thus was born the English Knights Templar.

The Templars and their sites can be seen in many English churches and placenames around England. If this has given you a taste for th Templar history, you find out more here.

Even nearer to home. If you are staying with us at the Forest of Dean Lodges in Coleford, you can find traces of the Knights Templar close by. Check out this great historical website.

Forest of Dean Autumn Breaks – Forest Holidays

Comments Off on Forest of Dean Autumn Breaks – Forest Holidays Written on August 26th, 2019 by
Categories: Forest of Dean Lodges
Forest of Dean Autumn Breaks – Forest Holidays
Forest of Dean Autumn Breaks

Forest of Dean Autumn Breaks – a great way to enjoy the season

Forest of Dean Autumn Breaks 2022. The Forest of Dean is beautiful in autumn. Let me correct that statement; the Forest of Dean is beautiful all year round.

Autumn is almost upon us and there is no better place for a short break, couples break, long weekend or even an autumn holiday, than the Forest of Dean and Wye Valley.

The great thing about modern technology is the Internet and all its information. Searching Google or other search engines brings forth a wealth of useful information, videos and photographs of the Wye Valley and the forest.

I found one particular website that has an article dedicated to the best places to see in England. You can guess where these places are? I’ve borrowed some of the articles but you can read it in full by following the link below.

A hidden gem spanning England and Wales and the three counties of Herefordshire, Gloucestershire and Monmouthshire, Wye Valley and Forest of Dean is beautiful any time of year but, in autumn, its rich landscape comes alive with spectacular colour.

One of the last ancient forests in the UK and an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, the Forest of Dean, which is also the largest oak woodland, was the one-time hunting ground of Norman kings. With 20 million trees still sandwiched between the River Severn and the River Wye, the region also boasts a delightful dappling of picture-perfect villages, such as Newent and Cinderford, cosy pubs, countryside boltholes, stunning walks and historic landmarks making it an ideal place to get a taste of the best of Britain in the autumn. Full article.

Trees and plants in the Forest of Dean

There is nothing more beautiful than walking through Dean Forest in Autumn. The variety of trees and plants is amazing. So too is their ever-changing colours before they shed their leaves.

The ancient woodlands on the steeper slopes often have herb Paris, sanicle, sweet woodruff and yellow archangel, but in the central Dean, the bluebell woods are very impressive and are nationally important. See this other great article from the Wye / Dean official site.

Take a look at our main pages and see what fantastic lodges and cottages we have available for a break in the Dean Forest this Autumn. Forest of Dean Lodges has a great range of offers and packages available. Long and short breaks, couples breaks, health Spa’s, Mother and Daughter packages and more.

And of course, we are pet-friendly. So, come and join us in Coleford this autumn and have yourself a great time.

What’s on in the Forest of Dean?

Comments Off on What’s on in the Forest of Dean? Written on July 8th, 2019 by
Categories: Events
What’s on in the Forest of Dean?

What’s on in the Forest of Dean in July – Poetry

Forest of Dean Poetry

Poetry. That’s correct, poetry. Now I know when you think about the Royal Forest of Dean, the first thing that springs to mind is, well, FOREST? That’s all well and good but you need more to do than walk around the forest, no matter how utterly beautiful it is.

At any given time of the year, there is always something to do or see in the Forest of Dean. July is no exception. One of the best ways to keep up with what’s going on is to check out the many websites. My favourite has to be 

The Wye Dean Tourism website has up-to-date information on all events going on in and around the Wye Valley area and Forest of Dean. That is where I found out about poetry. According to the Wye Dean Tourism site;

The Ledbury Poetry Festival takes place over ten days each July. We are the biggest and best poetry festival in the UK, featuring poets from all over the world. If you think you know what poetry is, come along and we’ll surprise you. There are live readings, performances, workshops, open mics, music, exhibitions, films, family events, street events, a slam and much more. 2019 is our twenty third year – join us for a celebration of poetry in the rural heartland of England. See More

There is also a free download of the programme of events. The event started on the 8th of July and carries through to the 14th of July. There will be familiar faces as well as new faces. New poetry and classic poetry.

What a wonderful way to enjoy a day out. There is so much more to see and do when you stay at the Forest of Dean Lodges at Coleford. A quick browse through the Wye Dean website will give you some great ideas for your holiday. The added bonus is that you can bring your pets with you. We are pet-friendly.

We hope you enjoy the poetry.

Coleford Music Festival July 2019

Comments Off on Coleford Music Festival July 2019 Written on June 28th, 2019 by
Categories: Events, Forest of Dean Lodges

The Coleford Music Festival is held on the 13th and 14th of July 2019

Coleford Music Festival 2019

Forest of Dean is similar in some ways to the rest of the UK when it comes to summertime. There is music in the air.

Every summer in July, Coleford hosts its own music festival in the town centre. You will be treated to Jazz, Blues, Rock, Folk and much more besides.

A music festival really lets you know that summer is here. This is an added treat to anyone staying in the Forest of Dean lodges and cabins at Coleford. Not only have you got a fantastic forest with all of its outdoor activities and pastimes. You also have a great event to look forward to.

The CMF19 (Coleford Music Festival 2019) is free entry. The festival relies on donations to help stage the event.

Coleford Music Festival is funded through some grants, fundraising and sponsorship but we rely heavily on the generous donations and support of people like you to raise the money required to stage the Festival every year.
We really need your help now and for future festivals.
Without your donations, our festival wouldn’t be possible.
So, thank you, in advance for any help you can give!

There is a Facebook page to help you keep up with what will be happening. Please pay them a visit and say ‘hello!?

Coleford Music Festival 2019

You will also see a list of up and coming events staged in and around Colford. If you ‘Like’ the CMF Facebook page, it will help you to keep up with all the great events and information. We hope you have a great time at CMF19 and look forward to seeing your photographs. If you want, we would even be interested in your thoughts regarding this event.

Forest of Dean Events June 2019

Comments Off on Forest of Dean Events June 2019 Written on June 3rd, 2019 by
Categories: Events
Forest of Dean Events June 2019

There are plenty of events in the Forest of Dean in June

Events Forest of DeanJune 2019


What events are there in the Forest of Dean in June? The great news is, there are plenty of events to keep you occupied.

The Forest of Dean is an excellent venue for your holidays, at any time of the year. The Forest of Dean is as beautiful in the winter as it is in the summer. Likewise, Spring and Autumn.

The usual activities, such as hiking, birdwatching, cycling and other activities can be supplemented. Thanks to the Internet, finding things to do on your Forest holiday is quite easy. Nonetheless, we have a few links for you that we think you may find very interesting.

One such site is Forestry England.

This Forestry website is excellent for information on the Forest of Dean and other locations. For instance; in June 2019, you can go and enjoy the following:

Forest Bathing.

Shinrin-yoku (or forest bathing) means ‘bathing’ all the senses, whilst walking slowly in the forest. When taking in the forest atmosphere like this, the brain naturally switches off from the ‘sustained directed attention’ of life’s daily pressures. Shinrin-yoku is restorative, both mentally and physically, like a bath.

Shinrin-yoku is a slow practice, involving walking; probably no more than 2km whilst taking in the forest atmosphere. As the season’s change, so does the weather, the quality of light, movement of air and animal life in the woodland. By bathing our senses in the forest we’re tapping into its natural rhythms. Buy tickets.

Bowl Carving

Have you ever fancied turning your own wooden bowls? If so, here is a great opportunity to do so. Learn to carve a beautiful wooden bowl using hand tools out of local green hardwood.  At the end of the day, you take home a functional bowl handcrafted by your own hands Buy tickets.

Woodturning on the pole lathe

Basics in woodturning, you will cover sharpening techniques, drilling on the lathe and parting off techniques.

Furthermore, you’ll discuss and learn finishing techniques to then take a hand made items home with you. With guidance from our tutors, you will gain hands-on experience throughout the course. Buy tickets.

That should do you for starters. The Forest of Dean has a diverse amount of shows, cultural events, countryside events as well as your normal range of entertainments. However, why not try our hand out and make something yourself. What a fantastic keepsake for your Forest Holiday.

Kate Middleton Garden at the Chelsea Flower Show to the Forest of Dean

Comments Off on Kate Middleton Garden at the Chelsea Flower Show to the Forest of Dean Written on May 20th, 2019 by
Categories: Forest of Dean Lodges
Kate Middleton Garden at the Chelsea Flower Show to the Forest of Dean

“I hope my garden inspires families to enjoy nature”

Kate Middleton

Prince George getting into mischief at the Chelsea Flower Show


Kate Middleton, or, the Duchess of Cambridge, is urging people to spend as much quality time with their children and make the most of nature around the UK. We couldn’t agree more with her.

Kate was speaking whilst visiting the Chelsea Flower Show. The Dutchess had designed a woodland garden and was having a day out with her husband and children.

The Royal Forest f Dean is an excellent place for family holidays or weekends together. Dean Forest is everything a nature lover could wish for. A safe and beautiful environment where the children (and adults) can explore.

According to the Duchess, she believes that being close to nature is beneficial to the mental health and wellbeing of people. Again, these are sentiments shared by Forest of Dean Lodges at Coleford. We have a range of holidays, weekend and short breaks, Spa’s, Hot Tubs and Yoga packages to take care of your mind and your body.

Walking through the Forest is inspiring and invigoration. The flora and fauna are in a myriad of colours, textures and lights. There are animals who have made their homes in the forest, such as Wild Boar and birds of many species.

Forest of Dean Special offers and packages

Coleford. in the Forest of Dean is a beautiful and popular place at any time of the year. However; people wanting to visit our lodges and cottages would do well to book their accommodation in good time. Unfortunately, it is the first come, first served.

Always keep looking back to the main Forest of Dean Lodges website. Quite often, we have offers that will be of interest to you or your family and friends. Spa Breaks, weekend retreats, Yoga, Mother and Daughter packages and lots more.

Well said Kate Middleton, and yes, we do hope your garden will inspire people to spend more time with their families and engage with nature.

We look forward to seeing you soon.


Top-Rated Forest of Dean Lodges

Comments Off on Top-Rated Forest of Dean Lodges Written on April 17th, 2019 by
Categories: Forest of Dean Lodges
Top-Rated Forest of Dean Lodges

Top-Rated Forest of Dean Lodges – What the Clients are saying

Top-rated Forest of Dean Lodges and Cabins

Which are the top-rated Forest of Dean Lodges? Well, if you go to Coleford and stay in our Lodges and Cabins, you will be able to judge for yourself.

The best way to choose a lodge or cabin in the forest of Dean is to see what the other guests have said. After all, there is no better recommendation than a very satisfied customer.

It’s all very well and good for us to blow our own trumpets. But, it’s much better when the very nice comments come from our guests.

You can check out the comments left on the Sykes Holiday website about Forest of Dean Lodges at Coleford.

For instance;

“Lovely comfortable, cosy cottage.”

Quality furnishings and spotlessly clean. Sally and Les were friendly and welcoming. Beautiful views from the windows and central to visit all places of interest around. Would not hesitate to recommend this cottage.

– Mrs Horne, March 2019

“Well appointed cottage with beautiful furnishings.”

Very welcoming and helpful owners. Beautiful area of the country. Can highly recommend.

– Mr Knapper, March 2019

Easter Breaks in the Forest of Dean 2019

Comments Off on Easter Breaks in the Forest of Dean 2019 Written on April 4th, 2019 by
Categories: Forest of Dean Lodges
Easter Breaks in the Forest of Dean 2019

Easter Breaks with plenty going on in and around the Forest of Dean

Easter breaks Forest of Dean Cottages and lodges Coleford, Gloucester.


Easter Sunday falls on April 21st 2019. This is a fantastic time to be in the Forest of Dea and the Wye Valley area of Monmouthshire.

Spring is in the air and the forest is in its new clothes. New life is bursting forth everywhere. For anyone who is a nature enthusiast, this is a very special time of the year.

The trees and plants are changing colours, new shoots, beautiful new leaves and flowers of all the colours of the rainbow. The animal kingdom is also awash with new life. The birds are singing, new lambs hopping about, it really is a wonderful place to be.

What is going on in the Forest of Dean for Easter week?


As with other months of the year, April has a lot going on. No matter what your interests are, we are sure you will be catered for. As is normal, we like to help by adding links to certain events.

The Wye Dean Tourism website is a great place to visit. Do like live music and shows? if so, there is a presentation of Guys and Dolls, a brilliant comedy musical held at Savoy Theatre in or near Monmouth. What about the kids, young and old? There is a Lego Brick History Museum. See how many iconic Leggo sets you can remember.

Its not just the recreation, the spiritual side of Easter week in the Forest of Dean is also catered for. There are four Roman Catholic churches. You can attend services when you come and stay at Coleford. There are other denominations in and around the Forest of Dean and Wye Valley area. Here is more information for you.

Easter Breaks in the Forest of Dean


If you are looking for the perfect Easter break and want to take your pets, then we are the best choice for you. At Forest of Dean Lodges, we have cabins and lodges catering for all group or family sizes and we are also happy to say, we are pet-friendly.

Please check out our main website pages to see what lodges and cabins we have available for you. Please, book early to avoid disappointment. If you require more help or information, please contact us, we will be delighted to hear from you.

Questions about the Forest of Dean

Comments Off on Questions about the Forest of Dean Written on April 1st, 2019 by
Categories: Forest of Dean Lodges
Questions about the Forest of Dean

Questions about the Royal Forest of Dean

Questions about the Royal Forest of Dean

BBC Countryfile often visits the Forest of Dean

I am often asked questions about the Royal Forest of Dean. The questions are usually more or less the same. So, I’ve decided now is a good time to put a finger to keyboard and answer the main questions.

The Forest of Dean; Why is it called that?

The core of the forest was used by the late Anglo Saxon kings, and after 1066, by the Normans, as their personal hunting ground. The name ‘Forest of Dean‘ originates from this time, perhaps derived from the ‘dene’ or valley near Mitcheldean, with areas known as Dene Magna (large) and Dene Parva (small).

Is the Forest of Dean in Wales, or England?

The Forest of Dean is one of E England’s few remaining ancient forests, covering over 110 square kilometers of woodland and lies between the rivers Wye and Severn, in the western part of Gloucestershire, and on the borders of Wales and Herefordshire.

Do animals live in Dean Forest?

Smaller animals shelter in the trees and pastures including grey squirrels, voles, hedgehogs, foxes, and dormice. There are several species of bats recorded within the Forest of Dean district and they are protected. The pipistrelle, noctule, and long-eared bat are the most common species.
Since Norman times, the Dean has had principally one species of deer – a herd of fallow deer. A few red deer were dumped in the Forest in 1999, but have since moved to the SW of the Forest in the Wye Valley.
There are thought to be about 1,500 wild boar in the Forest of Dean, making it the largest population in England. It became established after boar escaped from a farm in the 1990s. A further group of 60 animals was illegally dumped there in 2004
Does the Forest of Dean have any famous sons and daughters?
  • Dennis Potter. The playwright Dennis Potter was born at Berry Hill, near Coleford in the Forest of Dean. …
  • The Dymock Poets. …
  • JK Rowling. …
  • Horlicks. …
  • Dick Whittington. …
  • J R R Tolkien. …
  • Herbert Howells. …
  • Jimmy Young. See more

The best question of them all though is; Can I stay in the Forest of Dean at any time of the year? The answer to that is yes! Forest of Dean Lodges at Coleford is open 365 days a year. Spring, Summer, Autumn, and Winter. What’s also great is that you can bring your pets along with you. Forest of Dean Lodges at Coleford are pet-friendly.

Check out our main website pages and see what great accommodation we have available. You and your pets are welcome at any time and we will be delighted to see you.

Book now!

Springtime in the Forest of Dean

Comments Off on Springtime in the Forest of Dean Written on March 20th, 2019 by
Categories: Forest of Dean Lodges
Springtime in the Forest of Dean

Springtime in Forest of Dean Lodges –  the start of a new season

Springtime in the Forest of Dean. Bluebells Forest of Dean

Springtime in the Forest of Dean. Bluebells Forest of Dean

A most magical time of the year, Springtime. Its that time of the year when everything seems to be bursting into life, producing new life and rejuvenating the old.

Did you know, there are two definitions of Spring?

  • 1 March 2019 is the first day of the meteorological spring
  • 20 March 2019 is the first day of the astronomical spring

Meteorological spring

Meteorological spring will begin on 01 March 2019 and ends on 31 May 2019.

The meteorological seasons consists of splitting the seasons into four periods made up of three months each. These seasons are split to coincide with our Gregorian calendar making it easier for meteorological observing and forecasting to compare seasonal and monthly statistics. By the meteorological calendar, spring starts on 1 March.

The seasons are defined as spring (March, April, May), summer (June, July, August), autumn (September, October, November) and winter (December, January, February).

Astronomical spring

The astronomical spring begins on 20 March 2019 and ends on 21 June 2019.

The astronomical calendar determines the seasons due to the 23.5-degree tilt of the Earth’s rotational axis in relation to its orbit around the sun. Both equinoxes and solstices are related to the Earth’s orbit around the sun. See more of this article and others on this topic. Met Office.

Forest of Dean Lodges Spring 2019

Spring time Forest of Dean

The Forest of Dean is a kaleidoscope of colours.

The great thing about the Forest of Dean come the springtime is that the forest itself is a kaleidoscope of colours. new shoots from the tree branches, bushes, plants and shrubs of all kinds make a breathtaking picture.

Forest of Dean Lodges at Coleford have lodges and cabins as well as cottages available for Spring Breaks. However, you would be wise to book now.

There is plenty to see and do around the Forest of Dean, Wye Valley and Monmouthshire at this wonderful time of the year. There is no need to wait until summer for a well-deserved break.

We have all sorts of offers available, from weekend breaks, breaks for couples with jacuzzi or hot tubs, family breaks, health and beauty, Spa breaks and lots more. Please check 0out the main Forest of Dean website for more details.

Contact us at any time to book a lodge, cabin or cottage. We are always ready to take your call, whatever the season.

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