St Briavels  Gloucestershire


In 1870-72, John Marius Wilson's Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales described St Briavels like this:

BRIAVELS (St.), a village, a parish, and a hundred, in Gloucester. The village stands near Offa's Dyke and the river Wye, 4½ miles SSW of Coleford, and 5 NW of Woolaston r. station; and has a post office‡ under Coleford. It formerly was a market-town; and it long made a figure as a defence-post against the Welsh. ...

A castle was built at it, in the time of Henry I., by Fitzwalter, Earl of Hereford; enlarged and strengthened at several periods; and governed by distinguished peers from the reign of King John till that of George III. The entrance-gateway, two demi-rounders flanking the gateway, a long pile of building behind, and some interesting features in the interior still remain. Tradition says that King-John was either a guest or a prisoner in the castle, and that he wrote on it,-

St. Briavel's water and Whyral's wheat
Are the best bread and water King John ever eat.

The parish includes also the places called the Fence, the Bearse, Mawkins-Hayells, and part of Hudnolls, sometimes deemed extra-parochial; and is in the district of Chepstow. Acres, 5,104. Real property, £6,183. Pop., 1,261. Houses, 276. The manor belongs to the Duke of Beaufort. Roman coins have been found at Clearwell. The living is a vicarage in the diocese of Gloucester and Bristol. Value, £180. Patrons, the Dean and Chapter of Hereford. The church was recently restored. There are an Independent chapel and a national school.-The hundred contains ten other parishes, and part of another. Acres, 46,412. Pop., 28,215. Houses, 5,768.

St Briavels through time

St Briavels is now part of Forest of Dean district. Click here for graphs and data of how Forest of Dean has changed over two centuries. For statistics about St Briavels itself, go to Units and Statistics.

How to reference this page:

GB Historical GIS / University of Portsmouth, History of St Briavels, in Forest of Dean and Gloucestershire | Map and description, A Vision of Britain through Time.


Date accessed: 20th April 2024

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