18th century Agisters and pigs with rights to wander are just some of the ancient traditions celebrated in this beguiling look at life in the New Forest. Less familiar sights are captured, too, such as broom making and logging, forestry planting and sailing on the River Beaulieu near Buckler's Hard. No film about the area would be complete, though, without the famous Forest ponies – who are seen here in all their equine glory.
Director Roy Layzell
Featuring John Snagge
A portrait of the landscape, people and traditions of the New Forest in the 1950s.
Forest Heritage is a poetic portrait of life in the New Forest in the 1950s.
The cinematography by Roy Layzell, music by Clifton Parker and commentary by John Snagge combine to make this a gem amongst the documentary ‘shorts’ of the period.
It was commissioned by the Esso Petroleum Company in 1952, just as they were establishing a new refinery on the eastern edge of the New Forest at Fawley, but Forest Heritage is entirely concerned with the natural beauty and traditions of the area: ‘A place out of this modern world where simple pleasures are enough – a miraculous survival of pre-Norman England’.