Our hidden heritage


Hidden Heritage Get the App


The Foresters’ Forest Hidden Heritage App is an exciting new way to explore the Forest of Dean because it’s like taking a step back in time, showing you the Forest’s industrial past in a series of magical Then and Now images. The App is free to download from the Apple iStore and Google Play Store (links below).





The Hidden Heritage App follows the route of the Forestry Commission’s Family Cycle Trail and as you move along the path your location is tracked on a 1920s vintage OS map using GPS so that it triggers, for example, a ‘You have discovered Dilke Bridge’ message when you are near a Point Of Interest. At each of these sites the App will show you fading Then and Now images that brings the history of the Forest to life. One new user said ‘I never knew Beechenhurst looked like that’, after seeing an image of the Speech House Colliery that used to stand on what is now the Beechenhurst field.

See how many of the following places you recognise.



Coleford's Hidden Heritage - Explore Coleford, the birthplace of modern steel.

Follow the 7 mile route around the historic market town of Coleford, just a group of cottages in 1275, now one of the Forest of Dean's main towns. Discover Coleford's rich history through then and now images of 31 points of interest. Learn how Coleford was once at the forefront of the developing national iron and steel industry. Shorter routes and routes avoiding inclines are optional.

  • Maps show selected places of interest
  • Your location tracked by GPS (no 'phone signal required on route) 
  • Location pinpointed on map 
  • When near a place of interest GPS triggers "You have discovered" message.

Download from Apple store 

Download from Google Play