Yorkley to Monmouth in 1896 (General)

by Jefff @, West London, Middlesex, Tuesday, January 22, 2019, 17:02 (124 days ago) @ alison2

Hi Alison,
yes I agree completely, in those times people routinely walked miles. I've read of miners who walked 5+ miles to & from work as recently as the 1950s, and directly thro' the forest including at night. A retired ex-miner I knew in Cinderford in the 1980s would often go for a "relaxing stroll" thro' the woods; despite being in his 60s he'd walk miles and at a very stiff "route-march" pace, those of us half his age struggled to keep up !

In Victorian times walking was normal for ladies and children too, with children regularly walking a few miles to school, sometimes in bare feet if really poor. Just one example again relating to my home town Cinderford, who's origins were at the far eastern end of the modern town towards Ruspidge in the late 1700s following the opening of the ironworks and the mines. However it was the mid 1840s before the town had it's own Church, St Johns. Before then, and for many years afterwards for those living at the western end of the town around Dockham and Bilson etc, their nearest church was Holy Trinity aka Forest Church on Harrow Hill near Drybrook which opened in 1817. Many of those church-goers then routinely walked to Church along the edge of Heywood, so about 2 miles each way, and all in their "Sunday best", with others coming from much farter-afield such as Littledean and Lydbrook.


However in this instance, with a heavily-pregnant lady and a much farther distance, then I think the railway was a more likely option. In those days tickets were far more affordable than they are nowadays, especially on special occasions.

J


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