Blidworth Library, July 2023. Picture Source: Paul Fillingham.
Blidworth is one of six Nottinghamshire county libraries to have received investment from the Libraries Improvement Fund. As part of this programme, Nottinghamshire County Council, partnered with Inspire (a charitable community benefit society) to create a more welcoming space for community use. The refurbished library reopened in 2023 with a new stock of books and resources, including local history books and pamphlets detailing the development of the village, its history, folklore and traditions.
The former Church Hall, home to the Blidworth Army Cadet Force (AFC). Picture Source: Paul Fillingham.
Directly opposite the Library at the junction of New Lane and New Road is the former Church Hall, home of the Blidworth Detachment of the Nottinghamshire Army Cadet Force (AFC). Open to ages 12-18, the ACF enables young people to get involved in first aid training, military drill, map reading and orienteering.
Blidworth has several important military links and memorials that we will encounter on this trail.
New housing development on New Lane, Blidworth. Picture Source: Paul Fillingham.
Further along New Lane, a new housing development has been given street names like ‘Forest Folk Drive’ and ‘Prior Close’ – a direct reference to Blidworth’s literary heritage.
As we progress along New Lane, the setting becomes much more rural and closer to the Blidworth that James Prior mentions in his novel Forest Folk. In the next stage of the trail, you can listen to an excerpt from Prior’s historic novel.
Head along New Lane, past the cottage on the right, and take the fork on the right. Continue beyond the woodland on your left until you see the ‘Freedom Camping Club’ signage on your right.
Directly opposite, an opening leads into a peaceful meadow which has a gentle incline and is flanked by trees. Here you will find several wooden benches where you can sit, relax, and listen to an excerpt from James Prior’s Forest Folk.