Dorset Downs

The top of the downs from above Cerne Abbas, looking south east towards the River Piddle valley
Map of Dorset, including the Dorset Downs, showing the geology

Area of chalk downland in the centre of the county Dorset in south west England.

- Dorset Downs
The top of the downs from above Cerne Abbas, looking south east towards the River Piddle valley

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National Character Area

Natural subdivision of England based on a combination of landscape, biodiversity, geodiversity and economic activity.

Natural subdivision of England based on a combination of landscape, biodiversity, geodiversity and economic activity.

134. Dorset Downs and Cranborne Chase

River Frome

Wareham, Dorset

Historic market town and, under the name Wareham Town, a civil parish, in the English county of Dorset.

Historic market town and, under the name Wareham Town, a civil parish, in the English county of Dorset.

River Frome
"Bloody Bank" is the high point in the distance, on West Walls
Lady St. Mary Church
St Martin's Church, Wareham
North St.
Wareham Town Hall

To the north west of the town a large conifer plantation, Wareham Forest stretches several miles to the A35 road and the southern foothills of the Dorset Downs.

Brass Point, one of the Seven Sisters

Chalk Group

Lithostratigraphic unit (a certain number of rock strata) which contains the Upper Cretaceous limestone succession in southern and eastern England.

Lithostratigraphic unit (a certain number of rock strata) which contains the Upper Cretaceous limestone succession in southern and eastern England.

Brass Point, one of the Seven Sisters
The Needles, (Isle of Wight); part of southern England's extensive chalk outcrop.
Fossil echinoid Echinocorys from the Chalk Group of England
Contact between two units of the lithostratigraphy of South England: the Chalk Group (left, white, upper unit) and the Greensand Formation (right, green, lower unit). Location: Lulworth Cove, near West Lulworth, Dorset, England.
The Wealden Anticline.
Ivinghoe Beacon, Chiltern Hills

The broadly western margin of the Chalk outcrop is marked, from northeast to southwest, to south by the Chalk downlands of the Yorkshire Wolds, the Lincolnshire Wolds, a subdued feature through western Norfolk, including Breckland, the Chiltern Hills, the Berkshire Downs, Marlborough Downs and the western margins of Salisbury Plain and Cranborne Chase and the North and South Dorset Downs.

A view of the northern side of Hod Hill with the inner rampart on the left, the ditch in the middle and the outer rampart on the right.

Hod Hill

Large hill fort in the Blackmore Vale, 3 mi north-west of Blandford Forum, Dorset, England.

Large hill fort in the Blackmore Vale, 3 mi north-west of Blandford Forum, Dorset, England.

A view of the northern side of Hod Hill with the inner rampart on the left, the ditch in the middle and the outer rampart on the right.
3D view of the digital terrain model

The fort sits on a 143 m chalk hill of the same name that lies between the adjacent Dorset Downs and Cranborne Chase.

The ruins of the 16th-century Sandsfoot Castle

Weymouth, Dorset

Seaside town in Dorset, on the English Channel coast of England.

Seaside town in Dorset, on the English Channel coast of England.

The ruins of the 16th-century Sandsfoot Castle
George III bathing at Weymouth by John Colley Nixon, 1789
The White Horse at Osmington shows<Br>King George III on a horse
US soldiers marched through Weymouth to board landing ships for the 1944 invasion of France.
Weymouth Guildhall
Weymouth's esplanade displays Georgian architecture and Queen Victoria's Jubilee Clock.
Climatic ergograph for Weymouth. Sea temperatures (light blue line) remain mild in winter and warm slowly in spring, helping to produce a seasonal lag of 1–2 months.
Brewers Quay museum and shopping centre on the harbourside
Nothe Fort is one of the museums in the town.
St John's Church, Weymouth is a Victorian era Grade II* listed building.
The Weymouth Harbour Tramway or Quay Branch
Weymouth College of further education in Melcombe Regis
The beach volleyball classic is held on Weymouth beach every July.
Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy
Locations in Wessex, from The Wessex of Thomas Hardy by Bertram Windle, 1902, based on correspondence with Hardy.

The South West Coast Path has two routes around Weymouth and Portland—one around its coast, and one along the South Dorset Downs, which reduces the path's length by 31.0 km. The steep ridge of chalk, locally known as The Ridgeway, separates Dorchester and Weymouth.

The Hampshire Downs are one of the breadbaskets of Southern England. Here wheat is growing on the free draining chalk downs above Alresford.

Hampshire Downs

The Hampshire Downs form a large area of downland in central, southern England, mainly in the county of Hampshire but with parts in Berkshire and Wiltshire.

The Hampshire Downs form a large area of downland in central, southern England, mainly in the county of Hampshire but with parts in Berkshire and Wiltshire.

The Hampshire Downs are one of the breadbaskets of Southern England. Here wheat is growing on the free draining chalk downs above Alresford.

They are part of a belt of chalk downland that extends from the South Downs in the southeast, north to the Berkshire and Marlborough Downs, and west to the Dorset Downs.

The River Cerne at its source in Minterne Magna

River Cerne

The River Cerne at its source in Minterne Magna

The River Cerne is a ten mile long river in Dorset, England, which rises in the Chalk hills of the Dorset Downs at Minterne Magna, between High Stoy and Dogbury Hill, flows down a valley through Cerne Abbas and Charminster, and flows into the River Frome in Dorchester.

Eight exclaves of highly anomalous Cowley, all in Hillingdon, then in Middlesex.

Minterne Magna

Village and civil parish in Dorset, England, situated midway between Dorchester and Sherborne.

Village and civil parish in Dorset, England, situated midway between Dorchester and Sherborne.

Eight exclaves of highly anomalous Cowley, all in Hillingdon, then in Middlesex.

The village is sited near the source of the River Cerne among the chalk hills of the Dorset Downs.

Marshwood Vale and Conegar Hill

Marshwood and Powerstock Vales

The Marshwood and Powerstock Vales form a natural region in southwest England reaching to the Dorset coastline.

The Marshwood and Powerstock Vales form a natural region in southwest England reaching to the Dorset coastline.

Marshwood Vale and Conegar Hill

To the east are the chalk hills of the Dorset Downs and Cranborne Chase, and the coastal strip of the Weymouth Lowlands, and, to the west, the Greensand transitions into the Blackdowns.

3D view of the digital terrain model

Bulbarrow Hill

274 metre hill near Woolland, five miles west of Blandford Forum and ten miles north of Dorchester in Dorset, England.

274 metre hill near Woolland, five miles west of Blandford Forum and ten miles north of Dorchester in Dorset, England.

3D view of the digital terrain model

The chalk hill is part of the scarp of Dorset Downs, which form the western end of the Southern England Chalk Formation.