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17 October 2017

Pan Tod view point and memorial

Grid Ref SO634169


Pan Tod is the highest point in the Forest of Dean and stands at 951 feet with stunning views to the north and west. There is a beacon on the top, a viewpoint which a crouched figure of a miner with a topograph sitting on his back and a new memorial has been unveiled to remember freeminers who died in mining accidents in the Forest of Dean.

Our task was to rake the large grassy area and to lower the height of some hedges to improve the view.






Many hands make light work so the grass was raked into piles and removed.






The new 7ft (2.13m) monument made of steel and stone stands next to Pan Tod beacon on Ruardean Hill, Gloucestershire and records the names of 50 freeminers who died in mining accidents

It has been built by ex-miner Ernie Hughes whose father Leslie died at the Northern United colliery in Cinderford in 1951, aged 45.

Freeminer is the ancient title given to a Forest of Dean miner who has earned the right to work personal plots. To qualify, freeminers have to have been born in an area known as the Hundred of St Briavels and to have worked underground for more than a year and a day. Several hundred Forest of Dean men used to work in small mining operations although in recent times their numbers have declined.








Bringing down the hedgeline.