In 1971 Edward Heath was PM, decimalisation came in and free school milk went out. We wore hot pants, platform shoes and T shirts and bounced on space hoppers. Britain launched its first and only satellite Prospero, Greenpeace was born and the video recorder was launched.
In the midst of these iconic events the Wye Valley was designated as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) and forty years on, the Wye Valley AONB unit is planning four events to mark this special year. It will also be celebrating the finish of the Heritage Lottery Funded partnership project Overlooking the Wye which will mark the successful culmination of work on forty sites throughout the Wye Valley and will reflect its four themes of hidden industry, viewpoints, river connections and hill forts.
The first event is a Hands on History event on at Old Station, Tintern, on Sunday April 17 which will have exhibitions and demonstrations about industry of the area and will feature Sir William Pennyman’s Regiment of Foote from the Civil War Society who will demonstrate 17th century life including weaponry, food and metalworking, This will be followed by an event on Sunday May 22 looking at the Iron Age and Roman occupation with an Iron Age Rampage at the Yat Rock hillfort, Symonds Yat.
The third event On the Way to the Wye is a Georgian Celebration planned for Ross-on-Wye on Saturday, June 18. which will feature an historical progression through the town with notable Georgian celebrities such as John Kyrle, Coleridge and Nelson, led by local historian and author Heather Hurley. They will progress down to the River Wye where Nelsons trip down the Wye in 1802 will be reconstructed. A Georgian jamboree will be held on Ross Riverside with re enactors demonstrating various aspects of Georgian and will feature musket and sword demonstrations by the Worcester Yeomanry and Cavalry, 18th century life highwaymen, vagabonds and thief takers from The Rose and Thistle, Georgian rope making and boat building plus a look at Georgian costume, food, wine and music. Children will be entertained by Punch and Judy, face painting and a variety of games. There are also plans to a charity sedan race with teams from local organisations taking part.
The final event will be a Medieval Mayhem event at Chepstow Castle on Sunday September 18.In partnership in with the European Heritage Open Doors Project this event will feature medieval re enactments . All events are free and will be a great family day out.