The Future of Sherwood’s Past

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Landscape of Medieval Sherwood Forest

Mercian Archaeological Services Community Archaeology The Sherwood Forest Archaeology Project

Visitors since 7th November 2013

Mercian Archaeological Services CIC

Community Archaeology in the East Midlands,

 Community Archaeology Nottinghamshire, Excavation, Research, Volunteering, Community

    Archaeology Derbyshire, Training, Social, Learning, Community Archaeology Leicestershire,

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    and History of Sherwood Forest, Pottery Research, Medieval, Roman, Prehistoric, Community

    Interest Company, Community Archaeology Nottinghamshire.

Community Archaeology in Nottinghamshire

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Community Archaeology in Leicestershire

Community Archaeology East Midlands

Community Archaeology in Lincolnshire

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Sherwood Forest was not simply an area of woodland. People lived in the forest, and it contained:



Arable fields,

Pasture land,

and Meadows

However, areas high in woodland and heath were favoured locations for royal forests...

People lived in Sherwood Forest- it was not just a big area of woodland!

The whole town of Nottingham- its fields and meadows; the large royal manor of Mansfield and its outlying Berewicks; and many villages lay within the bounds of Sherwood Forest.

Nottingham was within the bounds of Sherwood Forest but seems to have been exempt from the forest laws through the medieval period.

Sherwood Forest was a vast area which from the 13th century stretched from the River Trent in the south to the River Meden in the north and from the Doverbeck in the east to the River Leen in the west (see the boundaries page).

The Forest was a mixed landscape of villages and towns, as well as woodland and heathland.

It is noticeable that Sherwood forest was more wooded and had larger areas of heathland in the northern section. This area was known as the 'High Forest'. This area seems to have been more remote and would have been the ideal hideout for outlaws and villains!

The area to the south and east was more heavily inhabitted and had more villages and fields and domestic occupation. There were however extensive areas of woodland and heathland in the southern area including 'Bestwood Park'- a royal deer park, 'Basford Waste' and 'Arnold Common' and also the woodland occupying the high ground of Mapperley tops stretching continuosly from Nottingham to Calverton. This southern section of Sherwood Forest was known as 'Thorneywood Chase'.

A third area known as 'Rumwood' was included in the laws of the forest although it was north of the forest boundary. This is the area around Clumber park.

Major Oak Sherwood Forest Robin Hood Medieval heath land sherwood forest Medieval Lings Sherwood Forest

Ancient Heath Land in Sherwood Forest

Ancient Heath Land in Sherwood Forest

The Major Oak , 1000 year old veteran oak tree and legendary hide away of Robin Hood

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Sherwood Forest History

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Award Winners 2016

for "Engaging people in the heritage, history & archaeology of Sherwood Forest".

Official Sherwood Forest Archaeology Project T-Shirt for just £9.99 +p&p

Sherwood Forest Archaeology Project T-Shirt Sherwood Forest Archaeoogy Project Mug

Official Sherwood Forest Archaeology Project Coffee Mug for just £8.50 +p&p

World-wide Robin Hood Society

Robin Hood Society Feather in Your Cap Award 2016

 Project page links:


 Project Home page


 About the Project


 Funding the Project


 Project Partner Organisations


 Project Sponsors


 Robin Hood Challenges






 Finds Processing


 Bus Tours - Outreach


 King John’s Palace


 Robin Hood’s Village




 Battle of Hatfield


 St Edwin’s Chapel


 Clipstone Village Dig


 Medieval Sherwood Map




 Links page


 About Sherwood Forest


 Forest Law


 Why Sherwood Forest?


 Boundaries of Sherwood


 Landscape of Sherwood


 Outlaws & Villains


 Stories from the Forest