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St. Michael and all angels, Soudley, Forest of Dean - - 1053415.jpg
St Michael and All Angels
Grid reference: SO660105
Location: 51°47’31"N, 2°29’49"W
Post town: Cinderford
Postcode: GL14
Local Government
Council: Forest of Dean
Forest of Dean

Soudley is a small village to the west of Cinderford, in the Forest of Dean in western Gloucestershire. It joins with Ruspidge to form a civil parish.

Nearby attractions include the Dean Heritage Centre, Soudley Ponds and the Blaize Bailey viewpoint. Activities at the Dean Heritage Centre include chain-saw wood carving and courses on manual wood turning to make items such as chairs and candlestick holders. There are also many educational resources available on site and, as a result, the Centre is regularly frequented by schools from the local area and Wales.

Through the village runs a small river, which hosts the annual Soudley Duck Race. Every year residents and visitors gather to sponsor ducks and race them the length of the village. The day is accompanied by a small fair that takes place in the village hall.

The village has a public house called the White Horse.[1] It has two skittles teams and regularly hosts events such as quiz nights and snail races.

Soudley is a popular destination for tourists visiting the Forest of Dean, largely due to its proximity to the Dean Heritage Centre, but also because the local scenery and the village's location; nestled into a tight valley. There are a number of small guest houses in the village which cater for people who wish to enjoy the local countryside while having a base in Soudley for their holiday.

Christmas Penny tradition

A long-standing tradition in the village is that of the Christmas Penny. Many years ago, when the village was a hub for coal mining, a local businessman wanted to return something to the (not particularly wealthy) local residents. He decided that on Christmas Day he would allow all the children to come to the village hall and would give them each a penny as a gift. This tradition lives on to this day and on Christmas morning many residents head down to the village hall to receive their penny. This is always accompanied by a small Christmas service with singing and small performances.


  1. White Horse

Outside links

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