Chideock & the surrounding area

chideock-hillTo the north of Chideock stretches the green marshwood vale still a lost country of small dairy farms and cider presses and cattle grazing deep in rich meadows the vale is dominated by the twin high hills of Lewiston (893 feet) and pilsdon pen (909 feet), which is the highest point in Dorset.

Pilsdon is bare and entrenched, a prehistoric hill fort; Lewsdon is shaggy with fine woodland. Both are easy to climb and both are well worth it. Deep in the vale lies the quiet and pleasant village off Witchurch Canonicorum.

Just to the west of Chideock is Morecombe lake, famous as the home of Dorset knob biscuits generations of mores family have made these crisp little rolls at their small factory by the roadside.

The next village along the hilly road is Charmouth , basically regency but now very much a tourist place. It has a good sandy beach. It was at Charmouth that king Charles II, as plain “Williams Jackson” stayed at an inn now known as the Queen’s Arms after his defeat at the battle of Worcester. He had hoped to get away in a boat from Lyme, but was very nearly caught and had to flee to Bridport.

Beyond, over the hill, lies the bright little, tight little town of Lyme Regis , and beyond that begins the county of Devon.

To the east of Seatown , in the next cleft in the cliffs, lies the small village of Eype, which still keeps up its fishing tradition. Inland from there is the charming villager of Symondsbury.

Bridport is three miles east of Chideock. It is a cheerful, handsome little town, long famous for its net making activities. Its harbour, now know as West Bay, lies south, and there are several quaint reminders there of its past importance as a port.

Past Bridport along the coast lies the interesting old village of Burton Bradstock, with its River Bride winding down to the sea. From there the magnificent coast road rolls onward to Swyre and Abbotsbury, and eventually to Weymouth.

To the east of Seatown , in the next cleft in the cliffs, lies the small village of Eype, which still keeps up its fishing tradition. Inland from there is the charming villager of Symondsbury.

From this road one looks out over the vast bay once known always as the West Bay and now more often as Lyme Bay, from Portland lying like a dumb crocodile out to sea, to far-off Start Point in Devon. And there, westward, is the friendly old inverted cup of Golden Cap, like a sea-castle guarding Seatown and Chideock.

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