Inspiration for the Scheme
The Weald Forest Ridge's landscape heritage has close associations with ancient medieval hunting forests. The importance of these forests was recognised in the "Polyolbion" - an epic topographical poem of the English counties written by Michael Drayton in 1611.
The Polyolbion likened four medieval forests in the Weald Forest Ridge to wood nymphs, or maidens. The Forests referred to are clearly identifiable nowadays as Broadwater (Water-downe), Ashdown (Ash-downe), St Leonard's (Saint Leonards) and Worth (Whord). The Weald Forest Ridge Landscape Partnership used Drayton's Polyolbion as the inspiration for conserving the Weald Forest Ridge's heritage.
Project work, including heritage interpretation, was carried out at all of the four Forests.
Additionally, the Scheme was launched with the "Maidens of the Weald" project. Same Sky - the community arts organisation from Brighton - worked with schools and community groups across the Weald Forest Ridge in 2009 to create four Giant Maidens. Each Maiden was designed to reflect the unique character of her particular Forest.