Explore the playwright's beloved home country
ome great artists are instantly synonymous with their local environments, from Thomas Hardy’s Wessex to DH Lawrence and the Nottinghamshire mining country in which he was brought up.
Dennis Potter, on the other hard, is seldom associated with his own home country, the Forest of Dean. Potter died in 1994, but remains England’s most revered television playwright thanks to heavyweight works such as Pennies From Heaven, The Singing Detective and Lipstick on Your Collar.
Potter was born in Coleford in 1935, and was the son of a local coal miner. Throughout his life, he maintained strong ties with his beloved home country, settling in nearby Ross-on-Wye and remaining an integral part of the Forest community.
Equally importantly, Potter also repeatedly made reference to the Forest throughout his career, in early plays such as The Beast with Two Backs and Blue Remembered Hills, and in his books The Glittering Coffin and The Changing Forest.
Today, local residents are proud of their association with Potter and are working hard to make sure the two names remain inextricably linked.
Visitors can also get in the act, by exploring the Forest of Dean landscapes on specially prepared trails with maps that take you deep into the ‘heart-shaped land’ that so bewitched the playwright.