last updated 29th July, 2014
home page
map
Author-County Index

Dorset

Jane Austen (1775-1817) stayed at Lyme Regis probably in November 1803. Jane Austen Garden is beside promenade on cliff-side. This is in a sorry state. Is there anyone in Lyme Regis who could help? Please contact webmaster. (John Fowles novel, The French Lieutenant's Woman, is set in Lyme Regis. Fowles lived at Belmont House)

Rupert Brooke (1887-1915) Holidayed with grandfather at Grantchester Dene in Littledown Road, (plaque) now Grantchester Dene Holiday Flats. Later at Blandford Camp.

Robert Browning (1812-89) Ancestors of Robert Browning, (Robert Browning and his wife, Elizabeth Pethebridgeand their son, Thomas) and their connection with the poet, are commemorated on a memorial tablet on the north wall of Pentridge church

Samuel Taylor Coleridge (1772-1834) In June 1797 Coleridge walked to Racedown, Dorset, where he met Wordsworth and his sister Dorothy.
Coleridge and Sir Walter Scott(1771-1834)frequently stayed at Gundimore, now known as Scott's House. It overlooks Avon Beach from the sands of Mudeford. Is is built in the stle of a Persian tent.

Charles Dickens (1812-1870) wrote a play for William Macready (1793-1873) who lived at Sherborne House which is now a girls' school and visited Macready in 1846. He also named his second daughter Kate Macready Dickens. Macready is buried in Kensal Green, London

T.S.Eliot died in East Coker.

John Meade Falkner (1858-1932) West Walks House, Dorchester, and visited 5 Brunswick Buildings, Weymouth, (home of three aunts).Dorset, 1871. Edu: Hardye's School, Dorchester, Weymouth Grammar School (now Weymouth College). In 1870, father accepted a curacy at Melcombe Regis and family moved to 82 St Thomas Street, now "The Old Rectory" restaurant. His book Moonfleet has locations at the Old Church, swept away in 1824, and the Manor at Fleet, the Bugle Inn and Carisbrooke Castle. The Moonfleet Hotel has a dive-bar called Blackbeard's Vault. There is a dedication to JMF in the church from the society. A trail has been completed by Kenneth Hillier, which is in his July 2004 Newsletter.

Thomas Hardy (1840-1928)


Thomas Hardy's Birthplace
b. 2nd June, 1840, in the last thatched cottage of Cherry Lane, Higher Bockhampton, (Stinsford)
On the memorial is written: THOMAS HARDY O.M.,was born in the adjacent cottage 2nd June 1840 and in it he wrote Under the Greenwood Tree and Far from the Madding Crowd. This monument was erected to his memory by a few of his American admirers 1931
ed. Dorchester, Lodged at 3, Wooperton Street. Weymouth, between 1869-71. The block of flats built on the spot, has a plaque commemorating the fact that there he wrote his first novel, Desperate Remedies and several poems, lived in Riverside Villa, Sturminster Newton 1878, 16 Avenue Road (was known as Llanherne), Wimborne 1881-83, (Riverside Villa is 2 semi-detached houses, the plaque is on the wrong one), 1883 moved into Shire Hall Place, on north side of High West street in Dorchester, and then built Max Gate on a plot of land opposite the toll house known as Mack's Gate, beside the Wareham Road of Dorchester where he lived from 1885-1928.

Max Gate
It is now open to the public, 5 days a week between March and October.

Statue
Thomas Hardy's statue in Dorchester
as is a delightful replica of his study. The latter is in the nearby museum.

From the crest of High Stoy at Minterne Magna gives the best view of Dorset (Literary Dorset x Legg). Hardy's heart is buried in Stinsford

Egdon Heath

In the Steps of Thomas Hardy by Anne-Marie Edwards published by Countryside Books, Newbury, Berks
Discover Hardy Country for Dorset is one of the tours available from Hardy Society. There is a series of tour pamphlets produced by The Thomas Hardy Society, PO Box 1438 Dorchester, Dorset DT1 1YH, telephone and fax 01305 25150
Another tour is Tess's walk from Plush to Beaminster via Evershot, where Tess made one of her walks to meet her father, was given in the Times three years ago. It is 10 miles from Plust to Evershot and the article states you need the OS Explorer Map 117 to follow the route.

cottage in Plush

G.A. Henty (1832-1902) b. near Cambridge, edu. London, Westminster School, Cambridge Uni. lived at 33 Lavender Gardens, Battersea, d. Weymouth, buried in London, Brompton Cemetery, Kensington. Empire and Commonwealth Musem, Bristol have an exhibit from time to time about Henty's work

Housman (1859-1936) mentions Portland Prison in A Shropshire Lad

Robert Francis Kilvert (1840-79) and visited his favourite poet, William Barnes, at Carne Rectory on 30 April 1874. The Rectory remains much as it was then.

T.E. Lawrence (1988-1935), 19th May Lawrence dies as a result of a motorcycle accident near his home in Dorset.

George Macdonald (1824-1905) Boscombe, Bournemouth

John Cowper Powys (1872-1963) educated at Sherborne and Cambridge, Corpus Christi. October '34, lived in a small flat at 38 High Street East, Dorchester, where he wrote Maiden Castle. His ashes, as he wished, were committed to the sea off Chesil Beach.
Littleton C Powys (1874-1955) lived at Quarry House, The Avenue in Sherborne.
Theodore Powys (1875-1953) first lived in terraced cottage, Lilac Cottage and then Beth Car both in Chaldon Herring, (East Chaldon) 1908-1940. Then moved to the village of Mappowder because of the war where he lived in "the little stone lodge-like building beside the churchyard" (Literary Dorset x Legg).
Llewellyn Powys (1884-1939) Born in Rothesay House, close to Dorchester South Station. Educated at Sherborne and Cambridge, thence to cattle-farming oin Kenya and newspaper reporting in New York City. In 1925 he returned to Chaldon Herring. The memorial stone above his ashes is at the edge of a field beside a footpath leading from White Nothe (nose) headland to the car park at Lulworth Cove.

Shelley (1792-1822) his heart buried in Bournemouth, commemorated in Christchurch, Dorset and University College, Oxford and Westminster Abbey. The sculpture to Shelley by Henry Weekes (1807-77) is in the north wall of the Christchurch Priory tower.

R L Stevenson formerly Lewis Balfour (1850-94) lived in Bournemouth 1884-7, 61 Alun Chine Road, (now Alumhurst Road) Westbourne, previously known as Sea View which they renamed Skerryvore, after the lighthouse designed by his uncle. The house was damaged be a German bomb in 1940 and has been replaced by a memorial garden with a miniature Skerrymore lighthouse. Stayed at King's Arms,High East Street, Dorchester, August, 1885. Visited Max Gate unexpectedly. Commemorated in Edinburgh and Bournemouth.

J.R.Tolkien (1892-1973) 1960's Holidays at the Miramar Hotel, Bournemouth (plaque)
1968 - 1972 Lived at 19 Lakeside Road, Bournemouth, 2 Sept. 1973 Died in a nursing home in Bournemouth

Sylvia Nora Townsend Warner (1893-1978) In 1922, Sylvia went to Chaldon Herring in Dorset to visit the writer Theodore Powys. There she met Valentine Ackland (1906-1969), an aspiring writer. In 1930, they became life partners, eventually settling permanently in the village of Frome Vauchurch in 1937. Most of their life together was spent in Dorset. In 1937 the two women moved to a house on the river at Frome Vauchurch in Dorset. The couple's ashes lie buried under a single stone in Chaldon churchyard.

H.G. Wells (1866-1946) His ashes were cast, from the chartered Deirdre into the sea off Old Harry, at Studland.

Percy Westerman (1876-1959)In 1911 he gave up his work at the Portsmouth dockyard to write. He lived on board a houseboat - a converted Thames barge - on the River Frome at Wareham in Dorset with his wife, son and four dogs. Percy Westerman founded and was the first Commodore of the Redclyffe Yacht Club near Wareham. (Using satnav, the road is unnamed.2014).
Dedication

Dedication 24th July, 2014


A panel commerorating Percy Westerham was unveiled on July 24th, 2014 by this gentleman. The panel stands by the river, some 50 yards up from the yacht club.
Yacht club
Redclyffe Yacht Club

William Wordsworth (1770-1850) Lived: 1795, Racedown Lodge, Lyme Regis, Dorsetshire. His brother, John, drowned in the waters off Portland Bay in 1805 whilst in command of the Abergavenny.

Virginia Woolf (1882-1941) The Dreadnought Hoax, one of the greatest practical jokes carried out by Virginia Woolf and William Horace de Vere Cole, pretending to be members of the Abyssinian royal family, boarded H.M.S. Dreadnought at Portland. Story told in the Daily Mirror of 15.2.1910 and in Literary Dorset x Rodney Legg.



1. The first record of the entry of the 'Black Death' into England, (1348 ad) happened there. (Actually it was in Melcombe Regis but that is just the width of the Wey estuary away).
2. Christopher Wren, the architect, was an MP for Weymouth at a time when Weymouth had 6 MPs. Contemporaneously, London had 8.
3. George III, the mad one, popularised sea-bathing in Weymouth.

Literary Dorset x Rodney Legg. International Standard Book ISBN 0948699 09 4 is recommended for further reading. Places are listed. Authors are not which is a pity.
 Any addditions please email :
Webmaster, Writersgate Thank you
Top of page