A report on DorsetDownland and Dorset Downs

Corfe Castle, captured and destroyed by Cromwell's army in 1646
Culver Down, Isle of Wight
The top of the downs from above Cerne Abbas, looking south east towards the River Piddle valley
Geological map of Dorset
Galium verum (L.) Lady's Bedstraw, a typical English chalk downland plant
Map of Dorset, including the Dorset Downs, showing the geology
Durdle Door, a natural arch near Lulworth Cove
The beach near Bournemouth Pier. Dorset's coastline is a major attraction for tourists.
The Keep Military Museum in Dorchester
Traction engines on display at the Great Dorset Steam Fair
Thomas Hardy
Sherborne Abbey

The Dorset Downs are an area of chalk downland in the centre of the county Dorset in south west England.

- Dorset Downs

To the southwest, downlands continue via Cranborne Chase into Dorset as the Dorset Downs and southwards through Hampshire as the Hampshire Downs onto the Isle of Wight.

- Downland

Dorset has a varied landscape featuring broad elevated chalk downs, steep limestone ridges and low-lying clay valleys.

- Dorset

These limestone areas include a wide band of Cretaceous chalk which crosses the county as a range of hills from north-east to south-west, incorporating Cranborne Chase and the Dorset Downs, and a narrow band running from south-west to south-east, incorporating the Purbeck Hills.

- Dorset
Corfe Castle, captured and destroyed by Cromwell's army in 1646

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Location of the Cranborne Chase and West Wiltshire Downs AONB in the UK

Cranborne Chase

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Location of the Cranborne Chase and West Wiltshire Downs AONB in the UK
Ashmore pond
Badbury Rings hill fort

Cranborne Chase is a chalk plateau in central southern England, straddling the counties Dorset, Hampshire and Wiltshire.

The plateau is part of the English Chalk Formation and is adjacent to Salisbury Plain and the West Wiltshire Downs in the north, and the Dorset Downs to the south west.

The downland has a long history with many earthworks and archaeology from the Neolithic age onwards.