The Arden – Home to Shakespeare, Sandstone and More

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Posted on September 2, 2023 by Toby Ridings

From the Brythonic word ardu meaning “high” or “forest”, the Arden area was once densely wooded and untamed, bordering areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) such as Cannock Chase and the Cotswolds. It also abuts the Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) Henley-in-Arden Forest.

The arden is home to many rare, threatened and endangered plants and animals. The community maintains its natural beauty through annual woods cleanup, ivy “pulls” and other volunteer efforts. See the Arden Forest Committee page for more information.

Arden is also the home to a distinctive Triassic white heterolithic sandstone that is used in local buildings. The sandstone carries a high level of calcium carbonate, which gives it a distinctive reddish hue that develops over time into the classic sandstone color of the Ardens.

A renowned series of annotated, scholarly editions of Shakespeare’s plays has been published by the Arden Press since the early 1970s. Each volume features a modernized text, comprehensive commentary notes glossing meanings and discussing staging issues and literary allusions, together with an extensive introduction by a leading scholar exploring the play’s critical, theatrical and historical contexts.

The Ardens’ town meeting schedule and the topics under consideration for review are available on their new web page, which you can find by clicking here. A special task force created by the Town Assembly has begun its challenging work reviewing governing documents and ordinances for the Village.

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