The Golden Valley is the tranquil area of gently rolling countryside in south-west
Herefordshire between Hay-on-Wye to the north, Pontrilas to the south and borders
Wales and the Black Mountains to the west.
Running through the valley is the River Dore which gives the area its name. ‘Dore’
is derived from the welsh word ‘dwr’ meaning water, but the Norman’s confused it
with the French d’or meaning Golden – and the valley became the ‘Golden Valley’.
Either (mis)interpretation is appropriate for a valley which is delightfully golden
with daffodils in the spring, rich with golden crops during the summer or golden
with hay and windswept leaves in autumn.
The Golden Valley has retained its agricultural prowess which has continued into
the 21st century with agriculture forming its main industry – including breeding
of the hardy Hereford Bull. The villages to the west of Hereford are rich with apple
and pear orchards for the cider and perry production industry in the city while chicken-farming
and processing is another main Herefordshire industry. The scattered farms grow varied
crops and Herefordshire cattle graze contentedly in the fields.
From the graceful ruins of Llanthony Abbey to south, magnificent soaring mountains
to the west and peak of Hay Bluff to the north, the Golden Valley remains a haven
of peace, scenic splendour and tranquility with its rural villages, babbling brooks,
remote farms, quiet lanes and breathtaking landscapes awaiting discovery.
The border countryside has so much to offer with its rugged uplands, quiet foothills
and wild, barren untamed borderland alongside the softer patchwork landscape of gentle
rolling hills of the Golden Valley’s rich farmland.
Throughout, the Golden Valley is warm, relaxed and welcoming with an unhurried pace
of life seldom found today.