Bryanston

Skim the edge of an estate that has evolved through the centuries, old manors still traceable in the ground and whispered in the place names. While the ancient families grew, the estate also developed. Keeping with the fashion of the time, Bryanston led the way, starting from scratch three times over. The demise of the … Continue reading Bryanston

Gillingham

Inspiring the writer Thomas Hardy and the artist John Constable, this small rural town was once hidden in forest. Follow the river Lodden past the hunting lodge turned castle of Kings Court, now nothing but earthworks. Walk on into the old landscape of the wood, scattered with ancient trees and thick hedgerows. Cross the railway … Continue reading Gillingham

The Big Map of Dorset

A hand drawn, to scale map of the county of Dorset. Recording a simple selection to only include earthworks, woodland, water, roads, tracks and settlement. It creates a different perspective of the landscape as it draws out historical activity and merges with what exists today. It is more up to date than OS maps it … Continue reading The Big Map of Dorset

Stalbridge

Starting in the smallest town in Dorset, buried in the Blackmore Vale, Stalbridge has a selection of historical aspects that have influenced the rest of the country. Explore the landscape to discover the ancient Stalbridge Park wall. The imposing manor of Stalbridge Park (fifth largest building in Dorset at the time) was the home of … Continue reading Stalbridge

Iwerne Minster

Start in the stunning village of Iwerne Minster amongst its beautiful buildings, little stream and even some ghosts. The village was loved and greatly cared for by the once Lord of the Manor, James Ismay. His father made rich by founding White Star Line (the Titanic owner). Pass the impressive manor of Wolverton, now known … Continue reading Iwerne Minster

West Stour and Fifehead Magdalen

Follow the flow of the River Stour across Thomas Hardy’s valley of the little dairies. Explore the remains of an ancient country house and the scattered ruins of mills that traced the rivers path. Wander across the flood plains through the woodland and over the little bridges linking the villages and hamlets. Distance:  5 miles/8km … Continue reading West Stour and Fifehead Magdalen

The Crown, Blandford

From the centre of Blandford, travel by foot, wheel or hoof over the meadows and out of town. Cross over the old railway and up the hill, where many Roman treasures have been discovered. Make your way through the ancient landscape of Little Down, skimming the estate of Inside Park, its manor having burnt to … Continue reading The Crown, Blandford

Banbury Hillfort, Okeford Fitzpaine and Belchalwell

Starting at Okeford Fitzpaine, a village full of timber framed buildings, thatched roofs and medieval doorways, make your way to the Iron Age Hillfort of Banbury; one of many hillforts that follow the River Stour. While enjoying the views across the Blackmore Vale and beyond, travel to Belchalwell, a small settlement with an 12th century … Continue reading Banbury Hillfort, Okeford Fitzpaine and Belchalwell