Dorset Historical Buildings

Christchurch Priory

Welcome to Christchurch Priory, home to a thriving Christian community, set on the southernmost edge of the town on the confluence of the River Avon and the River Stour as they flow into Christchurch Harbour.

Prayer and worship have been offered on this site for more than 1,300 years, and in this Priory Church for over 900 years, by people who have left behind a testimony to their faith in the architecture of this magnificent parish church which dates back to Norman times. We are open every day of the year, and welcome a large number of visitors from across the world.

A wide range of services is on offer in the Priory, many of them involving our choirs which are among the best parish church choirs in the country. As a Christian community, we set out to be welcoming and inclusive, and so the Priory is also used by the people of Christchurch for weddings, funerals, baptisms, and other significant events in both local and national life.

www.christchurchpriory.org

Corfe Castle & village

The dramatic ruins of Corfe Castle stand on a natural hill guarding the principal route through the Purbeck Hills. As you can see it guards the gap between the south of Purbeck, where Purbeck marble was once quarried, and the rest of England. Nothing could pass in or out without going past the Castle.

The village is constructed almost completely from the local grey Purbeck limestone and comprises two main streets, East Street and West Street, linked at their north end at the Square. Around the square, with its cross commemorating Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee of 1897, are clustered the small collection of shops, the post office, church and pubs. The main route through the village is East Street which forms part of the A351 main road taking traffic to Wareham in the north and Swanage in the south. Separating the two streets is an area of common land called “the Halves”.

www.corfe-castle.co.uk

Upton House

Poole’s premier attraction, whatever the season. There’s something for everyone, so come along today and see what’s got people talking!  

Marvel at the grand Grade II* listed Georgian Mansion House, enjoy the wildlife along the shoreline, allow the children to blow off steam along the Woodland Play Trail, enjoy one of our regular events – or simply find a quiet spot to admire the amazing horticulture and beautiful botanical Walled Garden.

www.uptoncountrypark.org

Lulworth Castle

Lulworth Castle, built in the early 17th Century as a hunting lodge, became a country house at the heart of a large estate. Thomas Howard, 3rd Lord Bindon, built the Castle in order to entertain hunting parties for the King and Court. The Howards owned it until 1641 when it was purchased by Humphrey Weld, the direct ancestor of the present owners.

The exterior of the Castle changed little over the years but the interior evolved in line with changing fashions until it was gutted by a disastrous fire in 1929. Consolidation work on the ruin was started by the Department of the Environment and was followed through to completion in 1998 by English Heritage.

www.lulworth.com

Kingston Lacey

Step inside the home of one of the most powerful families of Dorset and discover the history of Kingston Lacy and the flamboyant Bankes family who owned vast swathes of Dorset for over 400 years. From fighting the forces of Oliver Cromwell, to gathering one of the world’s largest collections of ancient Egyptian artefacts, the Bankes have a colourful past.

On Mondays and Tuesdays only the ground and state room floors will be open; this includes the library, drawing room, dining room, Spanish room, saloon and the state bedroom. The rooms above will be closed. The rest of the week, Wednesday – Sunday, the whole house will be open. Entry to the house will remain the same every day, 11am – 4pm.

www.nationaltrust.org.uk/kingston-lacy

Beaulieu

From the earliest motor carriages to classic family saloons, the National Motor Museum boasts one of the finest collections of cars, motorcycles and motoring memorabilia in the world.

Over 250 vehicles tell the story of motoring on the roads and circuits of Britain, from pioneering origins to the present day. The stylish, the elegant, the fast, the famous and the plain functional are all on show at what is the most well renowned motor museum in the UK.

www.beaulieu.co.uk

Buckler’s Hard

On the banks of the Beaulieu River, in the heart of the New Forest National Park, you will find the peaceful haven of Buckler’s Hard.

The exciting Maritime Museum and Buckler’s Hard Story gives an insight into the history of this 18th century shipbuilding village focusing on its vessels including those built for Nelson’s Navy.

See the replica timber framed 18th shipwrights’ workshop which has been built using traditional methods.

Buckler’s Hard has been voted by Visit England as one of the ‘101 Things To Do Before You Go Abroad’. Located in the New Forest within easy reach of the popular tourist destinations of Bournemouth, Southampton and Winchester. Plan your visit.

www.bucklershard.co.uk