West Dorset Walkers Welcome

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The Dorset Coast path is enjoyed by local people and visitors as a key way to experience and enjoy the stunning coastal landscape, sea views and numerous coastal communities through which it passes. The underlying geology and hydrology of the coastline result in a stunning topography which is subject to dynamic and sometimes rapid change, resulting in some difficult locations to navigate for the everyday walker. Many of these locations are found close to parish communities where the coast path is most popular. This project seeks to improve those locations.

West Dorset Walkers Welcome project is a two-phase, West Dorset Coast Path improvements and the artistic parish boundaries marker project.

West Dorset Coast Path improvements

Physical path improvement works at 12 locations along the Dorset Coast Path are now completed. Path works have improved and facilitated year-round access for local people and visitors. Walkers can now safely use and enjoy the path whilst also linking into local paths networks/parishes and parish attractions along the coast path.

Parish Boundary Markers

Parish boundaries markers provide welcome entry and exit points along the coast path highlighting for the traveller passage through coastal communities.

Eight local artists were commissioned in 2019 to develop 11 contemporary parish boundary artwork pieces to reveal to the walker where and when they pass from one parish to another when walking along the West Dorset Coast path. These pieces are collaboration projects between the artist, landowners and craftspeople to produce artwork pieces that represents the heritage of that particular parish boundary using a range of materials such as, stone, wood, metal. This project has produced 11 unique, beautiful parish boundary markers demonstrating high quality expertise in both arts and crafts.

1. Devon into Dorset boundary at Ware: To celebrate the iconic 19thC women of Lyme Regis pivotal in Lyme Regis reputation as the cradle of modern palaeontology – Mary Anning, Mary Buckland, & Sarah Woodruff. Artists Alex Brooks and Emma Molony.

2. Lyme Regis to Wootton Fitzpaine boundary: Highlighting the beautiful undulating local landscape with its distinctive hilltops providing birds eye viewpoints, for example, Lamberts Castle, Colney Castle, Stonebarrow, and Trinity, Thistle and Timber Hills. Arts, craftsmen and brothers Alex & Ed Brooks (to be installed New Year 2021).

3. Wootton Fitzpaine to Charmouth boundary: Remembering Mary Anning and her work searching for fossils in the Charmouth mudstone cliffs and discovering the first correctly identified ichthyosaur. Artist Greta Berlin (to be installed New Year 2021).

4. Charmouth to Stanton St Gabriel boundary: To commemorate the alleged 836 Danish Viking landings on Charmouth beach. As you approach the gate the Viking landskip warships align with the sea horizon to take you back in time and witness the Viking fleet advancing towards the shore. Artists Alex Brooks, Emma Molony & Tara Hansford.

5. Stanton St Gabriel to Chideock boundary: Enhances the links between the two parish communities providing a seat sculpted from local fallen trees echoing the weathered trees and hedgerows in this location. Inviting local people and coast path walkers to stop, sit and contemplate and connect with their surroundings. Artist Isla Chaney (to be installed New Year 2021).

6. Chideock to Symondsbury boundary: From the distance the walker can see the form suggesting the shape of a barrel which when reached invites the walker to stop and consider the coasts rich smuggling history. Artist Delphine Jones.

7. Symondsbury to Bridport boundary: Remembering the “Wildcats of Bridport” a group of women netmakers who downed tools, went on strike and marched in protest of a pay cut and secured the support of Bridport. Artist Alice Blogg.

8. Bridport to Burton Bradstock boundary: Recollecting the “spotters” who stood up along the iconic west bay cliff top and when they saw a shoal of fish would shout out to the fishermen below “Mackerel Straying” This prompted the fishermen to launch their boats and fish! Artist Brendon Murless.

9. Burton Bradstock to Swyre boundary: Echoing how this landscape changes from winter into summer with smooth, bleached to dark jagged elements. An Oak tree protected by them will grow and distort because of this exposed landscape but provide a permanent boundary marker for future generations. Artist Alice Blogg.

10. Swyre to Puncknowle boundary: In 1667 a white house stood on Chesil beach providing refuge for shipwrecked sailors washed up along the beach. Long since lost but remembered by a boundary marker that will help walkers brace themselves in windy weather! Artists Sarah Hough, Will Pinder Metal worker/forger & Jake Reilly Carpenter.

11. Pucknowle to Abbotsbury boundary: Spiral tassleweed, common mouse ear, toothed medick …. this boundary marker celebrates the fascinating names of the remarkable plants supported by The Fleet and Chesil Beach. Artist Andrew Whittle.

The pieces were all created by the end of 2019, however, installations were initially delayed by the wet weather at the beginning of 2020, followed by the COVID-19 working restrictions. We hope to see all the artworks in place very soon to be discovered along the West Dorset Coast Path.

For further information about this project, please contact Tara Hansford, Countryside Project Development Officer t.s.hansford@dorsetcouncil.gov.uk or Dorset Coast Forum dorset.coast@dorsetcouncil.gov.uk Tel. 01305 224833.
















Images of Parish Boundary Marker artwork pieces during different design and productions stages

Credit for all photos: Tara Hansford, Countryside Project Development Officer , Dorset Council



The Dorset Coast path is enjoyed by local people and visitors as a key way to experience and enjoy the stunning coastal landscape, sea views and numerous coastal communities through which it passes. The underlying geology and hydrology of the coastline result in a stunning topography which is subject to dynamic and sometimes rapid change, resulting in some difficult locations to navigate for the everyday walker. Many of these locations are found close to parish communities where the coast path is most popular. This project seeks to improve those locations.

West Dorset Walkers Welcome project is a two-phase, West Dorset Coast Path improvements and the artistic parish boundaries marker project.

West Dorset Coast Path improvements

Physical path improvement works at 12 locations along the Dorset Coast Path are now completed. Path works have improved and facilitated year-round access for local people and visitors. Walkers can now safely use and enjoy the path whilst also linking into local paths networks/parishes and parish attractions along the coast path.

Parish Boundary Markers

Parish boundaries markers provide welcome entry and exit points along the coast path highlighting for the traveller passage through coastal communities.

Eight local artists were commissioned in 2019 to develop 11 contemporary parish boundary artwork pieces to reveal to the walker where and when they pass from one parish to another when walking along the West Dorset Coast path. These pieces are collaboration projects between the artist, landowners and craftspeople to produce artwork pieces that represents the heritage of that particular parish boundary using a range of materials such as, stone, wood, metal. This project has produced 11 unique, beautiful parish boundary markers demonstrating high quality expertise in both arts and crafts.

1. Devon into Dorset boundary at Ware: To celebrate the iconic 19thC women of Lyme Regis pivotal in Lyme Regis reputation as the cradle of modern palaeontology – Mary Anning, Mary Buckland, & Sarah Woodruff. Artists Alex Brooks and Emma Molony.

2. Lyme Regis to Wootton Fitzpaine boundary: Highlighting the beautiful undulating local landscape with its distinctive hilltops providing birds eye viewpoints, for example, Lamberts Castle, Colney Castle, Stonebarrow, and Trinity, Thistle and Timber Hills. Arts, craftsmen and brothers Alex & Ed Brooks (to be installed New Year 2021).

3. Wootton Fitzpaine to Charmouth boundary: Remembering Mary Anning and her work searching for fossils in the Charmouth mudstone cliffs and discovering the first correctly identified ichthyosaur. Artist Greta Berlin (to be installed New Year 2021).

4. Charmouth to Stanton St Gabriel boundary: To commemorate the alleged 836 Danish Viking landings on Charmouth beach. As you approach the gate the Viking landskip warships align with the sea horizon to take you back in time and witness the Viking fleet advancing towards the shore. Artists Alex Brooks, Emma Molony & Tara Hansford.

5. Stanton St Gabriel to Chideock boundary: Enhances the links between the two parish communities providing a seat sculpted from local fallen trees echoing the weathered trees and hedgerows in this location. Inviting local people and coast path walkers to stop, sit and contemplate and connect with their surroundings. Artist Isla Chaney (to be installed New Year 2021).

6. Chideock to Symondsbury boundary: From the distance the walker can see the form suggesting the shape of a barrel which when reached invites the walker to stop and consider the coasts rich smuggling history. Artist Delphine Jones.

7. Symondsbury to Bridport boundary: Remembering the “Wildcats of Bridport” a group of women netmakers who downed tools, went on strike and marched in protest of a pay cut and secured the support of Bridport. Artist Alice Blogg.

8. Bridport to Burton Bradstock boundary: Recollecting the “spotters” who stood up along the iconic west bay cliff top and when they saw a shoal of fish would shout out to the fishermen below “Mackerel Straying” This prompted the fishermen to launch their boats and fish! Artist Brendon Murless.

9. Burton Bradstock to Swyre boundary: Echoing how this landscape changes from winter into summer with smooth, bleached to dark jagged elements. An Oak tree protected by them will grow and distort because of this exposed landscape but provide a permanent boundary marker for future generations. Artist Alice Blogg.

10. Swyre to Puncknowle boundary: In 1667 a white house stood on Chesil beach providing refuge for shipwrecked sailors washed up along the beach. Long since lost but remembered by a boundary marker that will help walkers brace themselves in windy weather! Artists Sarah Hough, Will Pinder Metal worker/forger & Jake Reilly Carpenter.

11. Pucknowle to Abbotsbury boundary: Spiral tassleweed, common mouse ear, toothed medick …. this boundary marker celebrates the fascinating names of the remarkable plants supported by The Fleet and Chesil Beach. Artist Andrew Whittle.

The pieces were all created by the end of 2019, however, installations were initially delayed by the wet weather at the beginning of 2020, followed by the COVID-19 working restrictions. We hope to see all the artworks in place very soon to be discovered along the West Dorset Coast Path.

For further information about this project, please contact Tara Hansford, Countryside Project Development Officer t.s.hansford@dorsetcouncil.gov.uk or Dorset Coast Forum dorset.coast@dorsetcouncil.gov.uk Tel. 01305 224833.
















Images of Parish Boundary Marker artwork pieces during different design and productions stages

Credit for all photos: Tara Hansford, Countryside Project Development Officer , Dorset Council