The ‘Voices from the Forest’ collection represents a series of oral history recordings made since 2015 and funded as part of the Foresters’ Forest project, a National Lottery Heritage Fund landscape partnership programme. The recordings take a biographical, life story approach to discover the occupational histories of men and women in the Forest of Dean in the last half of the twentieth century. It compliments a series of recordings, made in the 1980s by Elsie Olivey in the Forest of Dean, that feature the life stories of people in the first half of the century. The recordings are a rich source of material for social geographers, social and cultural historians and those interested in the history of the Forest of Dean and the broad occupational history of the area.
The project is lead by locally based academics Dr Roger Deeks and Jason Griffiths for the University of Gloucestershire. Voices from the Forest has only been made possible through the support and hard work of many volunteers, in particular Caroline Prosser-Lodge, Emily Hughes and Cheryl Mayo. We are also grateful to the very many people who kindly agreed to be interviewed and consented to the use of the recordings and photographs.