This is a tale from many moons ago. A man was travelling on his horse to see friends in Stroud, Gloucestershire. As the dark of the night was closing in, snow stared to heavily fall, he was north of the Gloucestershire town of Dursley. He felt he and his horse couldn't go on much further but what choice did he have? As he weighed up his options, he saw the glimmer of lights in the near distance. As he proceeded towards the lights, he saw it was an inn. He felt so lucky to have found this safe shelter.
An older man approached him and told the traveller that he was the groom for the inn and he would take care of his horse whilst the man could spend the night at the inn. Another man, who was dressed all in green, showed him to his room. Both the traveller and his horse were well fed and looked after. The traveller slept soundly and woke before dawn. Not wanting to disturb anyone, he took his horse and left 2 guineas, on the side, in payment for the hospitality he was shown.
He finally got to his friends house in Stroud and his friend said he had been worried about him, travelling in such a heavy snow storm. The traveller said he had stayed at a lovely inn and had been looked after well. The traveller's friend said there was no inn or even a house in that area so they decided to go and take a look. As they got to the area, all they found were the 2 guineas the traveller had left and only his and his horse's prints in the snow.
It was then the travellers friend remarked "I'm told they only get seen on nights where the weather is bad and never accept payment but they never stay later than the first crack of dawn so it was lucky you left when you did otherwise you would've woken up in the snow"