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The Glorious New Forest

New Forest

The New Forest has earnt its right as a holiday destination for many. Beautiful countryside, a wealth of wildlife and some beautiful beaches, there is something for everyone of all ages. With a central location and direct access to the open forest, the Cloud Hotel enjoys the perfect location from which to explore.

The New Forest was created in 1079 by William the Conqueror as a hunting area, principally of deer. It is a unique area of historical, ecological and agricultural significance, and retains many of the rural practices conceded by the Crown in medieval times to local people. Principal of these is the pasturing of ponies, cattle, pigs and donkeys in the open Forest by local inhabitants known as Commoners.

The New Forest has also been an important source of timber for the Crown. It is an outstanding recreational area for walking and riding. (extract taken from the New Forest website, found at Hantsweb)The Cloud Hotel is located on the edges of the village of Brockenhurst in the heart of the New Forest. The New Forest gained National Park status in early 2005 it is easy to see why! With its acres of ancient woodland and moors, the New Forest is full of animals and natural beauty hard to find elsewhere in the world.

Amongst the many areas of interest to visit in the New Forest, historical events and places are numerous. Further details of these can be found at the New Forest Museum.

Within the New Forest, you will find many different species of animal. The more commonly seen are the famous New Forest ponies, cattle, donkeys and pigs. This is due to the Commoners Law which allows certain residents of the New Forest to let their animals graze on the Forest land. Commoning dates back to the creation of the Forest when it was recognised that the restrictive Forest laws set out by William the Conqueror and his son, Rufus, were too harsh. A system of rights was established to enable Forest people to survive. These rights remain today although only about half of the commoners exercise their rights.

More unusual animals to be found here include wild deer, badgers and an assortment of birds. There are also adders, grass snakes and lizards which are harder to come by. Adders should not be approached and caution should be taken in warm weather when walking the moors. There is a local pub in Brockenhurst called the Snake Catcher in honour of "Brusher Mills" who once lived a solitary life in the forest and caught many adders during his lifetime.