SunGreen web site - Bream and the surrounding district

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Bream timeline

Date Event Comment
1462 5 or more dwellings recorded in Bream  
1505 St James Chapel of ease recorded  
1520 Oakwood Mill recorded as a corn mill
1608 20 Bream men mentioned in 'Men and Armour' by Smith or Smyth including Thomas Dowinge yeoman
1618 St James Chapel seated by Thomas Donning In private ownership, refered to as Castle Hay
1637 First house recorded at Maypole later to become New Inn
16?? Bream Court Farm  
16?? Pastors Hill Farm  
1671 Thomas Byrkin farming at Bream Cross Farm  
1712 Number of children being taught in Bream, 23
Population of Bream, 300
1729 House recorded on Sun Tump. The Rising Sun Inn has this date on a stone in the wall. later to become Rising Sun
1787 Rising Sun Inn recorded  
1791 Thomas Batten appointed Chapel Clerk and Sexton of St James Chapel His wife Elizabeth was teaching 12 scholars.
1792 Cross Keys Inn recorded at Maypole
1814 New Inn recorded  
1818 Rev Henry Poole appointed minister of St James Chapel at Bream for Coleford and Bream
1822 St James Chapel re-building began Rev. Henry Poole
1824 Oakwood Mill Deep Level driven. by David Mushet
c1825 Chapel clerk of Bream teaching 12 children  
1826 St James Church and churchyard consecrated 13th October
1826 Oakwood Tramroad built by David Mushet Parkend to Oakwood Land Level
1828 Bream to Parkend road built probable date of Pike House
1830 School near Bream Tufts - Number of Children, 65 est. by Rev. Henry Poole
1831 Warren James of Pastors Hill in revolt against enclosure of common land He was subsequently caught,tried and deported to Australia.
1833 St James Church - George Batten made Parish Clerk and Sexton. George Batten suceeded his father Thomas Batten
1835 Oakwood Mill Deep Level and Oakwood Mill Land Level Iron Mines shown on Sopwith's map.  
1841 Bream Schoolmaster William Webb age 35
Thomas Brace age 55 miller at Oakwood Mill
William Smith age 45 Innkeeper Bream's Tump
1844 Oakwood Chemical Works in operation opened by George Skipp
1847 No of children at Tufts school, 80  
1847 St James Church - Thomas Batten made Parish Clerk and Sexton Thomas Batten suceeded his father George Batten
1851 Tradesmen in Bream :
Blacksmiths, 4
Shoemakers, 6
Carpenters, 2
Grocers, 2
1851 Parkend Road Chapel built Bible Christians
1852 Oakwood Foundry - date on keystone found in 1999 by Alan Remnant
1854 St James Church - Bream made a separate parish (from Newland). John Baverstock made first vicar of Bream Rev. John Baverstock
1854 Roman coins found in Devils Chapel.
Sir James Campbell Bart, Deputy Surveyor
dated 98-120 AD
1854 Oakwood Chemical Works new owner Isaiah Trotter of Coleford
1855 Oakwood Tramroad extended to China Engine by James and Greenham
1856 Bromley Hill Furnace opened by Ebbw Vale Steel & Iron Works Iron Mines nearby
c.1857 "Bream Sampler" produced by Frances Wildin  
1858 Bream's Eaves chapel built Primitive Methodist
1858 St James Church - Rev. John Baverstock succeeded by Rev. Cornelius Witherby Rev. Cornelius Witherby
1859 Bream to Yorkley road built  
1860 Bream Woodside Chapel in use by Wesleyans
1861 St James Church - further alterations - Miss Alice Davies benefactor.Glebe House built. Alice Davies was sister of deputy surveyor Edward Machen
1861 National School built  
1862 Tufts school moved to Bream's Eaves - 3 depts. junior boys, junior girls, infants National School at what is now called Bream Schools
1863 Richard Heighway recorded as postmaster  
1865 National School depts run as separate schools
Bream Cottage Garden Society formed. First annual Flower Show at Colliers Beach
junior boys, girls infants
patron Sir James Campbell
1867 First "Bream Magazine" later known as S. James Parish Magazine  
1868 St James Church - Rev. Cornelius Witherby succeeded by Rev J. F. Gosling Rev J. F. Gosling
1869 Two Swans pub recorded
Flour Mill Colliery opened
1871 Census - population of Bream,907  
1874 Timothy Mountjoy addresses miners meeting at the New Inn
1877 Bromley Hill Furnace no longer in use
Bream Cricket Club mentioned in a match report.
1878 Bream Rugby Football club founded  
1879 National School - No of pupils, 300
Pillar box erected Feb 11th
very severe winter
1880 Maypole shown on OS map.  
1882 Death of Rev. J.F. Gosling, Vicar of St James October 16th
1883 St James Church - west stained glass window inserted in memory of Rev. J.F. Gosling.
Bream Maypole mentioned
New Vicar appointed : Rev. Edward Dandy
1885 Census - population of Bream, 2013
1885 China Engine and Princess Louise pits closed Oakwood valley
1887 Baptisms, 30
Marriages, 3
Burials, 31
St James Church Parish Magazine No 161
1887 Bream S. James Cricket Club First Season
1887 Sun Green was given to the people of the village for their recreation.  
1888 Bream Pike House ceased collecting tolls
Sir James Campbell Bart elected president of S.James Cricket Club, Rev. Dandy captain
turnpike trust abolished
1888 National School, junior schools merged Infants still separate
1889 Average attendance at school, 176  
1891 S. James porch moved to it's present position  
c1892 Iron mining ceased in Oakwood valley.  
1893 National School enlarged located at Bream Schools
1895 New Waterwheel at Priors Lodge (src. sale doc 1905) to pump water yo house
1896 St James Church - Rev. Edward Dandy succeeded by Rev. Ernest F. Eales New Vicar : Rev. E..F. Eales
1897 Albert J Batten listed as postmaster
No of pupils in National School, 300
Bream Brass Band mentioned
Mr W.F. Mullan, Master, Miss Brain (infants)
Leader Mr J Bevan
1900 National School enlarged  
1900 Oakwood Chemical Works closed last owner was Thomas Newcomen
1901 Census - population of Bream, 2,429  
1902 St James Church - Rev. Ernest F. Eales succeeded by Rev. George William Leonard Cass, B.A. New Vicar : Rev. George William Leonard Cass
1904 National school overcrowded- No of pupils, 382  
1904 Princess Royal Colliery - first shaft sunk depth 140 yards(136 metres)
1905 Bream Silver Band founded ?  
1905 Priors Lodge for sale Bought by Major Percival?
1906 Flour Mill colliery became part of Princess Royal  
1905 Temporary infants school opened in Primitive Methodists schoolroom. Bream's Eaves chapel.
1907 Bream Infants School opened opposite Bream C. of E. school (formerly National)
1908 Village Institute moved to present position, - later to be called Bream Sports Club.  
1909 Construction of Co-op and Knockley Cottages  
1910 Infants School renamed Council School, 153
Bream C. of E. School , 311
average attendances
1911 Census - population of Bream, 2,524  
1912 Council School enlarged  
1919 St James Church re-seated between 1902-1919. Rev. George W. L. Cass. Rev. George W. L. Cass
c1920 Aeroplane lands in field next to Bream Avenue  
1920's Electricity and Mains Water arrive not all could afford them
1921 Cenotaph built  
1922 Princess Royal - no of men employed, 1,138  
c1922 Letherens of Lydney opened first bus service using a small Ford driven by Mr Bert Savoury Cinderford, Coleford, Bream, Lydney
1923 16 council houses built along Highbury rd. (sometimes called "Piano Street") opposite Bream Auto Store
1925 Maypole removed - cut off at ground level 7th November
1927 Miners Welfare Hall built  
1927 Council school enlarged and re-organised to take junior girls and infants Junior boys left in the Bream C. of E. school
1928 Flour Mill Colliery - coal extraction ceased  
1929 Stan Miles opens his hardware store at Bream Woodside.  
1931 Census - population of Bream, 2,649  
1938 Council School and C.of E. attendance, 367  
1938 Fire destroys Bream Welfare Cinema  
1939 Miners Welfare Cinema becomes Bream Cinema Films cease in mid 1950's
1941 May 1st, 6 German bombs dropped at the Tufts (Brockhollands) at 3 A.M. 1 had a time fuse and exploded at 3 P.M.
1945 Tuesday and Wednesday 8th and 9th May 1945 School V. E holidays
Friday 11th May Victory Tea Party after School.
From the diary of a pupil.
1946 Bream Cinema burnt down. re-built as Miner's Welfare Cinema
1948 20 Pre-Fabs built at Hillside 17 for miners, 3 for disabled servicemen.
1948 C.of E. school accepts controlled status  
c1950 Jubilee Well demolished between 1947 and 1953
1951 C. of E. school became junior mixed school.
Girls dept of Council School became Bream Secondary Modern School with 200 pupils.
Pupils passing the selection process went either to Lydney Grammar School or Bells Grammar School
1952 St James Church - 1st Sheepdog Trial  
1955 Highbury Rd. council houses extended to Bream Woodside
1960 Rugby Club take over Cinema. Bought for £1800. Many local people also loaned £1 each Trustees :Cyril Edwards, Cyril Miles, Maurice James, Bert Rickards
1962 Princess Royal Colliery closed 30th March
1963 First Annual Sheepdog Trial at Trow Green Farm Ellwood AFC Supporters Club
1964 Bream Young Wives group formed  
1965 Princess Royal pit-head gear dismantled  
1965 Stan Miles sells his Woodside Hardware Store to Haviland, James and Wildin.  
1966 6 murals erected on the side of Shire Hall Gloucester made in Bream at BlueRock by Mr Peter Saysel
1968 Miles Merchants moves to the former Williams & Cotton premises at No 1 High St Bream. The Miles Merchants premises becomes Marcliff Boutique.
1973 Bream Secondary Modern school closed.
C. of E. School moved to Secondary School buildings across the road
200 plus Pupils were absorbed by surrounding schools - notably Whitecross, Lydney and Five Acres Coleford
1976 Bream Avenue Chestnut trees under threat of felling due to their "unsafe" condition Sick trees felled, the remainder were reprieved
c1977 Stump of Maypole found by workmen  
1979 Conversion of 2 classrooms at the former C of E school into a library  
1980 Library at top of Whitecroft Rd closed In the "Tin" building
1981 St James Church damaged in fire- Services held in Maypole Garage courtesy of the owner Mr Brian Franklin
1983 St James Church re-opened with modern interior  
1988 Downhams Forest Bakery closed  
1989 Census - population of Bream, 3,200  
1991 Bream's Eves chapel closed  
1992 Old Park Pit the last local (to Bream) freemine closed. Worked by Donald Johns and Gilbert Kear
1992 Bream School became "Bream C of E (Voluntary Controlled) Primary School", 222 pupils Old C. of E. junior mixed school became Youth Centre and Library
1992 St James Church - Rev. Alastair Kendall succeeds Rev Phillip Rees
Bream Eaves Chapel was bought by St James Church and fully re-furbished for church and community use
New Vicar : Rev Alastair Kendall
1994 Parkend Road Post Office closed Tessa Elliot had worked in the PO for 45 years.
1995 Miles Merchants Hardware Store closes. Run by Roy Haviland since 1965.
1998 Bream Community Centre (former Youth Centre and Library) threatened with closure. Community protests avert the threat.
2000 Bream School buildings extended  
2001 Retrieving Wenty's Sturty Bird published, the story of Bream Cenotaph. Foot and Mouth disease closes the forest. Author Ian Hendy
2002 Restoration of Bream Cenotaph - re-dedicated 20th September. Community effort
2003 138th Flower Show held indoors at Bream RFC. - 16th August All others had been in tents outdoors.
2003 Princess Royal "Pit Baths" building under threat of demolition.  
2004 4 Dean Forest Boundary Stones re-erected in Bream - unveiled 19th August. 218 were orininally erected around the Forest boundary
2004 "City of Truro" boiler restored at Bream. - at Bill Parkers works at the former Flourmill Colliery
2004 International cricketer Jack Russell M.B.E. brings a Gloucestershire XI to Bream for 40 over testimonial match. Wednesday September 1st
2005 Broadband arrives in Bream (at last) January
2005 Bream's Public Conveniences demolished. Weds 27 April
2005 VJ 2005 Commemoration Parade and laying up of the standard of the Forest of Dean Burma Star Association. Sun 14 August
2005 Rising Sun "Skittle Alley" converted to accomodation.  
2005 Gloucestershire cricketer Tim Hancock brings a Gloucestershire XI to Bream for 40 over testimonial match. International fast-bowler Syd Lawrence bowls at Bream. Friday 15 September
2005 Planting of the"Nelson Oak" to mark 200 years since the Battle of Trafalgar and the death of Nelson. On the site of "The Hard Up Tree" - Friday 21 October
2005 New wing added to Bream Community Centre  
2006 St James Church - Rev. Alastair Kendall leaves Bream  
2006 Survey to investigate iron mines beneath buildings in Bream including St James Church  
2007 New houses built between the former Downhams Bakery Bakehouse building and Highbury Road. New Houses built also at Princess Royal Way. Two of the original council houses in Highbury Road demolished.
2007 Bream (former) Sawmill buildings demolished, Bream Tufts. at the Tufts
2008 Oct, Janet Cook and Sylvia Nelmes sell Bream Post Office after 19 years at the Woodside premises.  
2009 Bannock tree at the West end of Bream cut down March 2009
2009 'The Keys' pub closes, (formerly 'The Hedgehog' and 'The Cross Keys') August 2009
2009 Princess Royal Pit Baths demolished Bat sanctuary left.
2009 Bream Community Centre renamed to the West Dean Centre
2010 Bream Village Plan being prepared Meetings at Rising Sun Inn
2010 Maypole Garage re-opens after a short closure following the death of Mr Brian Franklin Re-opened by Mike Lewis
2010 Felling of trees behind Parkend Rd.  
2010 Bream Chemist's becomes a branch of 'Boots'  
2011 Tony Page retires from his barber shop Started in 1950s
2012 Inner wooden fence put up at Bream School playground January
2013 Parade re-instated on Remembrance Sunday, West Dean Centre to the Cenotaph.  
2014 Parkend Rd Chapel closed, converted to housing Methodists moved services to West Dean Centre
  Best by Farr, Newsagent closed  
  John James (furniture) closed  
  Bream Model Shop closed  

Cafe and Photography studio open in place of B. B. Farr

  Maypole Garage closed  
  New vicarage under construction. Old Vicarage for sale.
2015 150th Bream Flower Show On the rugby field
  Bream Auto Store closed
Work on Sports Ground started
2016 Bus shelter erected at Bream School  


Efforts were made to ensure accuracy, but please check original sources if you wish to quote these dates

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