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Doreen Valiente


Doreen Edith Dominy Valiente (1922 – 1999) was an author, poet, and influential English Wiccan who was involved in a number of different early traditions, including Gardnerian Wicca, Cochrane’s Craft, and the Coven of Atho. 

Doreen was one of the most respected and influential English witches in the modern-day witchcraft movement and is sometimes referred to as the “Mother of Modern Witchcraft.”


in 1953 she was initiated into the Gardnerian tradition by its founder, Gerald Gardner. When Doreen became the High Priestess of Gardner's Bricket Wood Coven, she helped him to produce and adapt many important scriptural texts for Wicca, such as The Witches Rune and the Charge of the Goddess, which were incorporated into the early Gardnerian Books of Shadows.

Following Doreen’s death on 1st September 1999 her magical collection of artefacts and manuscripts, including her Books of Shadows, were bequeathed to John Belham-Payne.  On 6th March 2011 John founded the Doreen Valiente Foundation (DVF) as a charitable trust and it took legal possession of Doreen’s collection to prevent it from being split up, sold off, or exploited for the gain of any individual.

The DVF’s charitable “objects” were declared in the Deed Of Trust as follows:

  • To protect artefacts which are important to the past, present, and future of pagan religions

  • To make the artefacts available for education and research

The DVF continues to uphold these aims and is working very hard to raise funds to protect and care for its collection, host research visits, present educational talks and lectures, whilst finding a permanent home for the collection.  The DVF believes the “home” will provide a platform for wiccans and witches, researchers and scholars, authors and historians, and the curious, to enjoy the collection now and in the future.

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