E.J.E. Wyndham of the Clearwell Estate owned the Travellers Rest in 1891. It was a beer house which was free from brewery ties. The ownership had passed to H.E. Collins twelve years later in 1903 and the lease had been taken on by the Wickwar Brewery. Arnold, Perrett & Co.Ltd. were acquiring many previously free of tie pubs in the Forest in early Edwardian times to secure guaranteed outlets for their Wickwar ales. The Travellers Rest had an annual rateable value of £11.4s.0d. and ‘closing time’ was at 10 pm.
Dean Forest Mercury – Friday, January 15th 1971: Darts Trophies – On Wednesday evening of last week at the Travellers Rest, Stowe Green, Inspector K.R.S Parsons presented to Mr. Dennis Barrow, captain of the darts team, the Berry Hill and District section ‘A’ winners cup and a shield to the members of the winning team. The trophy was also presented to Mrs. V. Barrow, wife of the captain. The team and supporters later enjoyed a steak supper, which was provided by raffle funds, organised by Mrs. V. Barrow.
Pub landlady Maureen Richards was delighted when her Dalmatian bitch, Zasha, gave birth to four puppies just before Christmas 1999. They were fathered by a pedigree dog belonging to a friend. The four adorable puppies were given pedigree names, Fentive Boy, Lazy Girl, Octavia Plus One and Stowe Green Lad. Maureen said of Zasha, “I always knew she would make a wonderful mum and she is so attentive to her puppies it’s not true. I am tempted to keep one of them – but I have enough work here running the pub.”
Maureen and her husband Arthur decided to keep Fentive Boy, which they affectionately called Fen. It was a decision that possibly saved their lives. In the early hours of 26th March 2002 Arthur and Maureen were woken up by Fen and Zasha barking wildly. Arthur said, “I went out to the landing and there was smoke everywhere. I shouted to Maureen to get dressed and then climbed through a landing window onto our kitchen roof and jumped onto the ground. I then grabbed a ladder and Maureen climbed out of the bedroom window. I shouted at her to phone the fire brigade and got Fen and Zasha out of the back door. I didn’t really feel scared at the time because I was just acting without thinking. But it was our two dogs who woke us up and who knows what would have happened if they hadn’t raised the alarm.”
Arthur and Maureen and their two Dalmatian dogs then sat in their car watching the Travellers Rest burn whilst waiting for the fire brigade to turn up. It was a bitter blow as trade had just picked up after the foot-and-mouth outbreak of 2001 and they had just spent thousands of pounds refurbishing three guest rooms and the toilet facilities. The fire spread rapidly, and it took more than 30 firefighters almost three hours to bring the blaze under control. The blaze called extensive damage with some floors completely burnt through and large sections of the roof were destroyed. The cause of the fire was under investigation
The Travellers Rest did not reopen until the summer of 2007. Brian and Yvonne Penkethman, who had previously successfully run the Miners Arms in Sling, took over the pub. An ‘eating out’ review in the ‘Forester’ newspaper was praiseworthy noting that ‘just past Clearwell quarry in Stowe the Travellers Rest awaits to refresh its visitors. Six years ago, a fire broke out in the upstairs flat and the restaurant was shut down. Until recently the inn and restaurant lay idle, but Brian and Yvonne Penkethman have developed it into a beautiful, contemporary establishment.’ The reviewer summarized with the ‘service was brilliant, and the atmosphere was friendly and relaxing. Gorgeous surroundings, great staff and generous helpings. Compliments to the chef.’ The service and food were given a rating of 10/10, and the atmosphere and value for money 9/10.
In December 2009 a planning application was submitted to Forest of Dean District Council to change the use of the Travellers Rest to create two residential flats. The application was refused, but the property never reopened as a pub. Another application was under consideration in January 2010 from Mr A. Wallace who was seeking permission for a change of use for the ground floor of the public house to build two flats in its place.
The Travellers Rest has recently been used as a centre for a dog rescue charity (K9 Rescue) and a raw dog food business (K9 Raw). The owners have expressed interest to sell the property of which the proceeds of sale would be used to relocate a brand-new dog rescue centre with run free facilities. The Travellers Rest has been marketed as a large, rural five-bedroom house that has been converted from a public house. The upper floors have been subject to a complete refurbishment to modern standards. The lounge has retained its old-world features and boasts a stunning inglenook fireplace. The ‘internals have been partially renovated leaving scope for your own mark.’
Landlords of the Travellers Rest include:
1891 Charles Knight
1903 James Berrow
1939 Harold Miles
1999 Andrew and Maureen Richards
2007 Brian and Yvonne Penkethman (moved from the Miners Arms, Sling)