i love being part of the new forest.
it wasn't until i started my family tree that i found out that, like my portsmouth harbour ancestors, i have ancestors living on the edge of the forest going back a long way~to the 1400's.
so i took out a map and saw that over a 600 year period, even longer, ancestors through my maternal line remained within less than 40 miles of where i sit now.
no wonder i feel so very at home here.
i loved living in dorset and do miss it so much but things here seem much more wild, sometimes mysterious, when the mists have fallen and you cannot see through the trees...its almost as if you can walk through and find yourself in another land...
going out of the village we no longer pass fields full of crops or sheep, we go through a tangle of forest with the occasional wide open moor land, so high and windswept you can see the isle of wight in the distance.
instead of animals grazing in fields we have horses, cows, donkeys and at the moment as it is pannage season, pigs, wandering at will and grazing where they please.
and of course there are plenty of ancient places, in the new forest alone there are many round barrows/cemetaries, a couple only a mile away from my own little 'roundhouse' and hillforts a plenty.
i have heard tell that the old church in the village, st. nicholas, is on the site of an ancient settlement as there are ramparts surorunding it and it is very old being mentioned in the Domesday Book and the yew in the grounds is over 1000 years old...
maybe the ancient inhabitants of my village planted it there to ward of evil spirits?