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Somerset & Dorset
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Discover Dorset Series


(Jeremy Harte) Dorset’s legends are its traditional stories told and retold over many centuries. They are the authentic voice of its past, its oral history, containing everything that real history doesn’t.  Time has embellished some; in others the confusing details…..



(Peter Stanier) Dorset’s rivers and streams have powered over 400 mills. Today, only a handful of mill wheels still turn, and only one commercial watermill remains open. The book deals at least a mention of nearly sixty of these mills,…..


Place Names

(A D Mills)  Dorset is blessed with a rich variety of place-names, many of them unique to the county or made up of rare Celtic words that are now obsolete. Some are Anglo-Saxon, some Norman French or Latin.  Others provide…..



(Stuart Morris)  The Island and Royal Manor of Portland is unique in Great Britain, and even today retains an atmosphere and identity that are all its own. The author provides a portrait of the island that both brings its past…..



(Penny Copland-Griffiths)  The potteries of Dorset are amongst the most enduring of all the crafts associated with the county.  The clay beds of south and east Dorset have long provided potters with a livelihood. The author traces the history of…..


Prehistoric Age, The

(Bill Putnam)  The earliest man-made objects so far found in Dorset are stone axes from about 15,000 years ago, the most visible from our prehistoric past are the great Iron Age hill forts which so enrich the Dorset landscape –…..


Railway Stations

(Mike Oakley)  Dorset once had 69 railway stations and halts: today only 23 remain open. This is the first book specifically on the county’s stations to be published, and includes photographs of all but one.  Collectively they add a unique…..


Regency, Riot & Reform

(Jo Draper)  The Regency period of the early nineteenth century was one of great contrast in Dorset.  The old order was threatened by agricultural riots and a hunger for reform. The author considers the whole period 1800-1837, and discusses the…..



(Maureen Attwool)  Dorset’s coast is notorious for the number of ships which have been wrecked along its length.  Vessels of every description have foundered on the rocks, ledges, beaches and bays that lie between Poole Harbour and Lyme Regis. This…..


Stone Quarrying

(Jo Thomas)  Stone quarrying is the most important of Dorset’s industries, with a history that reaches back to Roman times. The limestones from the Isles of Purback and Portland are amongst the most famous of all building stones, but elsewhere…..


Victorians, The

(Jude James)  No period, except perhaps the present, has had a greater impact than the sixty three ‘Glorious Years’ of Queen Victoria’s reign. Dorset was a rural backwater when she came to the throne, but by the time of her…..