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PURTON

T he small hamlet of Purton was a noted port that exported Dean timber for the Royal Navy. It was also the location of one of the Forest's earliest ferries, which was in existence by 1282 when it was operated by 'Hamelin the Ferryman'. By the 18th century, this was known as the Purton Passage Ferry and it remained in operation until the late 19th century and a stone quay and a large stone slip-way which the ferry used is still in existence on the waterfront. Like Gatcombe, Purton's existence as a port came to an end in 1851 with the construction of the South Wales mainline railway (built by Bunel) but unlike Gatcombe , Purton over-looks the railway and so magnificent views can be had across the estuary. The oldest building in the hamlet is Purton Manor, a 16th century stone house that still retains much of its original features and which stands at the South end of the Port on high ground. Also visible at Purton are the remains of the Severn Railway Bridge, which was built to link Lydney with the Gloucester & Berkley Canal and Sharpness docks.

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