13 DORCHESTER (6990)
(O.S. 6 ins. aSY 68 NE, bSY 69 SE, cSY 78 NW, dSY 79 SW)
Dorchester, the County Town and a municipal borough, stands on the right bank of the river Frome and
now includes within its boundaries the parish of
Fordington. The old town, bounded by the Roman
walls, formed an irregular quadrilateral with the N.E.
corner rounded off by the Frome. The parish of
Fordington extended all round the town except where
the river forms the boundary; part of it was brought
within the borough in c. 1836 and the rest was finally
incorporated in 1900.
The borough now includes Maumbury Rings
(see p. 589), first constructed in the Neolithic period as a
'henge' monument and converted into a Roman
amphitheatre some 2,000 years later, and Poundbury
(see p. 487), an Iron Age hill-fort.
The site of the Roman town of Durnovaria was
occupied from the mid 1st century A.D., perhaps initially
as a fort, and was defended some time after A.D. 130
with an earth bank and ditch enclosing 70–80 acres.
A stone wall was later added but it had largely disappeared by c. 1600 and now only a short length of the
rubble core remains above ground; the earthworks,
which, like Maumbury Rings, were used as defences
in the 17th-century Civil War, can still be seen in
Colliton Park and along the Walks.
The courses of the principal Roman roads leading to
the town are known. It is also known that there was a
rectangular grid of streets within the defences, but the
present street plan does not conform to it, even though
the main E., W. and S. exits approximately coincide
with the sites of gates. The principal remains of the
Roman period are in Colliton Park, where the foundations of one of several houses excavated in 1937–9 are
permanently exposed. Many tessellated pavements,
plain or decorated, have been found but little has been
recorded of the buildings to which they belonged and
none of the public buildings has been identified. The
more complete pavements are preserved in the County
Museum, including two from buildings outside the
walls. Extra-mural remains of the Roman period also include cemeteries, of which the most notable are those adjoining Poundbury and Fordington church, the aqueduct 12 miles long, presumably intended to supply
public baths and fountains, and the amphitheatre of
In mediaeval Dorchester a castle stood in the N. part
of the town on the site of the prison and further E. was a
Franciscan friary, but of these nothing now remains.
St. Peter's is the only mediaeval church in the old town
which has survived. Fires in the 17th century and in the
S. part of the town in 1725 and in the E. in 1775 have
left only a few houses of the 16th and 17th centuries,
mostly in the main streets. Some of them have or appear
to have had timber-framed fronts to the street and stone
back and side walls. These older houses were often quite
small, with only one or two rooms on plan; at No. 45
High East Street (Monument 46) greater depth than a
single span roof would cover was achieved under a short
secondary roof gabled to the rear. Nos. 6 and 7 High
West Street (Monuments 49 and 50) also made use of
gables to the rear for greater depth, and had narrow
wings at the back as well. No. 63B High West Street
(Monument 80), facing Grey School Passage, with two
rooms flanking a central chimney is of a rural type more
common in S.E. England.
There was little development from this kind of layout during the 18th century; indeed in many of the
houses there is evidence of piecemeal rebuilding with
little departure from earlier planning. No. 6 High East
Street (Monument 29) shows a development of the
shallow front block into three compartments. Houses of
two-room depth are uncommon before the 19th century
except for the few isolated larger houses such as
Wollaston House and No. 3 Trinity Street (Monuments
24 and 133).
Three detailed maps of Dorchester illustrate the later
development of the town: Hutchins' map (1st ed. I,
370) shows the town in 1771; a large-scale map showing
municipal property is dated in a later hand 'c. 1832'
(D.C.R.O.); a third map on a scale of 10 ft. to 1 m.
and dated 1854 was made for the purposes of the Public
Health Act, 1848, and is held by the Borough Surveyor.
These maps show that the area within the walls has
never been fully built up, while development into
Fordington was prevented by the open fields which
were not enclosed until after 1844.
The village of Fordington lay around the church E.
of Dorchester. The early 19th century brought considerable rebuilding and infilling in the old village but very
little enlargement of the built-up area. Elsewhere in the
parish there was only sporadic building before the mid
19th century: to the N.W. of the town the Barracks
were built at the end of the 18th century and The Grove
between the Barracks and Colliton Park was developed
before 1844. A few houses between Great Western
Road and Bowling Alley Walk, and Top o' Town
House (Monument 157), facing down High West Street,
were the only precursors of the extensive building to
the S. and W. of the town that took place after 1850.
The buildings in Fordington are discussed below (p. 129).
The principal monuments are: of the prehistoric and
Roman periods, Poundbury hill-fort and Maumbury
Rings and the other remains of Durnovaria; of the
mediaeval period, the churches of St. Peter and of St.
George, Fordington; of the 17th century, Napper's
Mite Almshouses and Nos. 6 and 7 High West Street;
of the 18th century, the Shire Hall, Savernake House in
High West Street, Nos. 23 and 23A High West Street,
South Lodge and Wollaston House; of the 19th century,
the church of All Saints, the Town Hall, the King's
Arms Hotel, the front of the Antelope Hotel, No. 24
High East Street and Nos. 1–5 West Walks.
b(1) The Parish Church of All Saints stands in
High East Street. The walls are of squared and regular
coursed local stone rubble with dressings of Ham Hill
stone and the roofs are slate or tile-covered. The old
church on the site was destroyed by fire in 1613. Its
replacement was itself demolished and replaced in the
mid 19th century by the present church in the early
14th-century Gothic style from the designs of Benjamin
Ferrey; the foundation stone was laid in 1843 (see
Miscellaneous below). It comprises a chancel, N. and S.
chapels, vestry, nave, aisles and a N.W. tower. The
spire was added subsequently, before 1860.
All Saints is a 19th-century Gothic church of some
distinction and, in it, the 17th-century carving of the
Royal Arms is notable.
All Saints Church, Plan
Architectural Description—All the features are of 1843 unless
otherwise described. The Chancel (31¼ ft. by 21 ft.) has, outside,
a moulded plinth containing an inscribed foundation stone and
moulded stone cornices to the side walls carved with laudatory
inscriptions. The E. window is of five lights with net tracery
in a two-centred head with a moulded rear arch supported on
slender jamb-shafts with moulded bases and caps. The N.
and S. walls each contain a single-light window, with internal
treatment similar to that of the E. window, and further W.
an archway with a two-centred head opening into the side
chapels; both archways have half-octagonal responds with
moulded caps and bases. The S. wall also contains a doorway
to the vestry. The chancel arch is two-centred and of two orders;
the moulded inner order is supported on attached circular
shafts with moulded caps and bases; the cavetto-moulded
outer order is continuous.
The North and South Chapels (13½ ft. by 15 ft.) flanking the
chancel are single-bay continuations of the N. and S. aisles
of the nave, being demarcated therefrom by two-centred
archways of two orders similar in design to the chancel arch
though smaller. The chapels are generally alike; each contains
in the E. wall a three-light window with net tracery in a two-centred head and, in the outside lateral wall, a two-light window
similar in detail to that in the E. wall. In the external re-entrant
angles with the chancel are projecting stair turrets; these
have doorways with shouldered heads; they gave access to
galleries, now removed.
The Vestry (15 ft. by 9 ft.) contains in the S. wall a reset and
restored late 15th or early 16th-century window of four
pointed trefoiled lights with tracery in a segmental-pointed
head with a moulded label.
The Nave (67¼ ft. by 21 ft.) is of four bays. The N. arcade is
of three bays, the S. of four, comprising two-centred and
moulded arches on octagonal piers and semi-octagonal
responds with moulded caps and chamfered bases. The S. wall
of the N.W. tower occupies the fourth bay on the N. and
contains a chamfered blind arch. The W. window is of four
lights with net tracery in a two-centred head.
The North Aisle (15 ft. wide) is of three bays, with the tower
on the W., and the South Aisle (15 ft. wide) is of four bays,
otherwise they are generally alike and contain two-light
windows similar to those in the N. and S. chapels. Below the
window in the third bay of the S. aisle is a doorway with
moulded jambs and two-centred head with a moulded label
The North-west Tower (14 ft. by 13 ft.) is of three stages, with
a later broach spire. The angle buttresses are in four weathered
stages. The tower arch to the N. aisle is two-centred and of
three orders, the inner order dying out on the responds and the
two outer orders continuous; the bases have a double chamfer.
The W. doorway has moulded and shafted jambs and a two-centred head of three moulded orders under a gabled and
crocketed hood-mould framing a trefoiled circular panel.
The second stage has in each of the N. and W. walls a single-light trefoiled window with a string-course returned over it in
the form of a two-centred arch. In each face of the third stage
is a window of two lights with tracery in a two-centred head
of three continuous chamfered orders under a label with headstops. At the wall-head is a moulded cornice on corbels supporting an octagonal stone spire with broaches bringing it to
the square; on the cardinal faces are three tiers of gabled
The Roofs are of 1843, with arch-braced collars in the
chancel, hammer beams in the nave and braced tie beams in the
aisles; the wall-posts are supported on carved or moulded
Fittings—Bells: two; 1st by John Danton, 1624; 2nd by
Thomas Purdue, 1697. Benefactor's Table: in nave, on W. wall,
recording gift by William Gape, late of the parish of St. Paul,
Covent Garden, of £5 out of his properties in St. Syth's
Lane, London, to the poor after the death of Mary his wife,
who died 1681, wall tablet of wood with shaped frame and
cartouche containing traces of the painted arms of Gape, 17th-century. Bracket: supporting alms-box, carved wood consolebracket, late 17th or early 18th-century (see Pulpit). Fonts:
In N.W. tower, square bowl, each face with arcading of
round-headed sunk panels, 12th-century, disused. In nave, of
freestone, octagonal, with ogee-headed panels on each face
framing trefoil-headed sinkings, on each angle a large blank
shield, probably 1843. The modern font-cover incorporates
a globe and dove said to be from the former sounding-board
of the pulpit. Glass: In E. window, figures under canopies in
the main lights, of Moses, St. Mary the Virgin, Christ, St.
John and Elias, with the figure of the donor, Edward Denison,
Bishop of Salisbury (1837–54), in the foot of the centre light,
and scenes from the life of Christ in that of the other lights and
in the tracery. In S. aisle—in W. window, St. Peter and St.
Paul with angel and children, reset, probably the window
given by the children of the congregation to the new church,
1843. In tracery of aisle windows, I.H.S. in foliage wreaths
with angels, probably c. 1843.
Monuments and Floor-slabs: Monuments: In tower—reset
against the N. wall, (1) of Matthew Chubb (1617), of stone
(Plate 12), with recumbent civilian effigy on tomb-chest
enriched with strapwork panels on the front in wall-tabernacle
setting, tabernacle with Corinthian side-columns on pedestals
supporting heavy entablature enriched with stylised flowers
and faceted panels and with three mask brackets supporting
mitred projections of the dentil-cornice, all framing enriched
round-headed wall-recess with carved architrave and angels
blowing trumpets in the spandrels, the inscription-tablet in a
strapwork frame in the recess; erected 1625. In S. aisle—on S.
wall, (2) of Charles Eldridge, 1846, Sarah his wife, and another
later, black and white marble tablet on lion-leg supports. In
churchyard—S. of chancel, (3) of Joseph Seward, 1717, Mary
his wife, and others, table-tomb. Floor-slabs: In nave, (1) of
Samuel Slade, 1776, Edith his wife, 1815, and another; (2) of
. . . Chaffey, 1786, and others; (3) of Mary, wife of Reuben
Tripp, 1792, and others; (4) of Sarah Eleanor Mason, 1850;
(5) of William Ensor, 178.; (6) of Elizabeth Justans, 1757; (7)
of William Gaylard, 1722. In N. aisle, (8) of Mary Griffen,
1714, and others; (9) of Henry Duffield, 1760, and others; (10)
of Elizabeth King, 1800, and others. In S. aisle, (11) of . . .
Locke, 17 . .; (12) of Thomas Hutchings, 1813, and Sarah his
wife, 1822; (13) of Thomas Bryer, 1779, and another; (14) of
John Kinnimouth, 1754, and another; (15) of Edmund Babbidge, . . . .; (16) of Edith Feaver, . . . .; (17) of Nicholas Stick-land, 1768; (18) of Honour Brine, 1762. In N.W. tower, (19)
of John Batten, 1763; (20) of James Harris, 1787.
Plate: includes cup and cover of 1572, a cup of 1633, all three
parcel-gilt, two cups of 1844 in the mediaeval style and
two patens of the same date engraved with IHS. Pulpit:
octagonal, with enriched styles, each face in two heights of
enriched panels, the lower reeded, the upper with strapwork,
early 17th-century; applied on front, elaborate scrolled and
carved console-brackets, early 18th-century and similar to the
Bracket described above; base later and top shelf modern (see
also Font in nave). Reredos: In chancel, full width of E. end,
consisting of cinque-foiled two-centred arcading on columns
with moulded caps and bases, all below a moulded string, the
spandrels being diapered and gilded, mid 19th-century; traces
of painting of the same date remain on the wall-face behind
the modern reredos. Royal Arms (Plate 60): In S. aisle, large
carved wood panel with initials C.R. and traces of painted
lettering on frame, Charles II. Screen: refitted in archways to
N. and S. chapels, of wood, with ogee, traceried and crocketed
heads to the bays, moulded and enriched cornice and carved
brattishing, early 16th-century, extensively restored, with early
17th-century close lower panels. Seating: In chancel and nave—
incorporated in stalls and some pews, 17th to 18th-century
plain and carved panelling. Miscellaneous: In chancel—in E.
wall outside, foundation stone inscribed 'This foundation
stone of the church of All Saints, rebuilt on the ancient site,
was laid by the Revd. Edward Denison, Bishop of Salisbury,
Oct. 4, 1843', with the names of the rector and churchwardens.
b(2) Parish Church of the Holy Trinity, standing
on the N. side of High West Street, was entirely rebuilt
in 1876 to the designs of Benjamin Ferrey. It contains
from an earlier church on the site the following:
Fittings—Bell, now inaccessible, said to be by Bilbie and
dated 1732. Chest: In nave, of oak, 4½ ft. long, on three shaped
bearers, with five-sided top dated in nail heads 1683, with
wrought-iron strap hinges, angle pieces and locks.
Monuments and Floor-slab. Monuments: In S. chapel, (1)
of George Stickland, 1824, and Fanny his wife, 1825, marble
tablet in Gothic stone frame. In nave—on S. wall, (2) of Sarah,
wife of William Henning, 1825, and William Henning, 1842,
black and white marble tablet with draped urn; (3) of Rev.
Nathaniel Templeman, 1813, black and white marble tablet,
signed Lester, Dorchester; W. wall, (4) of John Crouch, 1817,
and Elizabeth his wife, 1814, black and white marble tablet
with draped urn against pyramidal backing; (5) of Thomas
Gould Read, 1835, alderman, white marble sarcophagus-shaped tablet on black marble backing; (6) of William Bower,
D.L., 1829, white and grey marble tablet with shield-of-arms
on die of stele; (7) of Rev. George Wood, A.M., rector, 1847,
and Betsy his wife, 1855, tablet. In N. aisle—on W. wall, (8)
of William Cuming, M.D., F.R.C.P. Edin., and also Fellow
'of the Societies of Antiquaries of London and Edinburgh' etc.
'who desired to be buried in the churchyard rather than in the
church lest he who studied while living to promote the health
of his fellow citizens should prove detrimental to it when
dead', 1788, rectangular white marble tablet with inlaid green
marble border, reset by Hellyer, Weymouth; (9) of Christopher Cooper, M.D., 1842, white sarcophagus-shaped tablet on
grey marble backing. In S. aisle—on S. wall, (10) of Elizabeth
Banger, 1842, and others, white marble tablet on black marble
backing; (11) of John Cox, 1842, signed Lester, Dorchester;
on W. wall, (12) of Rev. Henry John Richman, 1824, white and
grey marble tablet with reeded frame and pediment. Floor-slab: in nave, to F. A. Garland, 1841.
Plate: includes a pair of cups of 1627, with the maker's mark
PB above a crescent, each with a nearly straight-sided bowl
engraved with strapwork, on a moulded stem and foot, and a
flagon of 1718 with the maker's mark TRGG in a quatrefoil,
given by the rector, William Leigh, in 1738; the cups were
bought in 1627 for £5 4s. 10d. (Churchwardens' Accts.).
Royal Arms: In nave, on S. wall, carved in the round in oak,
b(3) The Parish Church of St. Peter (Plates 2, 11,
13) stands in the middle of the town immediately N.W.
of the junction of South Street with High East and High
West Streets. The walls are of rough Portland and Ham
Hill stone ashlar with dressings of the same materials;
the roofs are covered with stone slates, tiles and lead.
The reset S. doorway indicates the former existence of a
late 12th-century church on the site. The present
building, including the Chancel, Nave, Aisles, South
Porch and West Tower, is of the 15th century; Robert
Grenelefe alias Baker of Dorchester by his will dated
4 March 1420/1 left 20 marks 'to the fabric of the new
construction of the body of the church of St. Peter in
[Dorchester]'. The North and South Chapels represent a
second phase of building. The main restoration of the
church was in 1856–7 under the direction of J. Hicks
and his pupil Thomas Hardy, when the E. end was
rebuilt and the North Vestry added (Dorset County
Chronicle, 17 July 1856, 4 June 1857). Further restorations
took place in 1905, 1934, and 1961–5 when the N.
vestry was extended W. The chancel was refurnished
in 1894–7, the reredos and probably the other fittings
being designed by C. E. Ponting.
St. Peter's is a good late mediaeval town church little
altered structurally and contains two notable late 14th
century military effigies and interesting later monuments.
Architectural Description—the following features, unless
otherwise described, are of the 15th century. The Chancel
(23½ ft. by 19¾ ft.) has a mid 19th-century E. wall and window.
In the N. wall is an archway with a two-centred head; head
and responds are continuously moulded and enriched with
trefoil-headed panelling on the reveals. In the S. wall is a
similar archway. The chancel arch has a two-centred moulded
head and shafted responds with moulded caps and bases.
The North Chapel (19¾ ft. by 11 ft.) is embattled and has a
partly restored E. window of three cinque-foiled lights with
vertical tracery in a two-centred head and casement-moulded
reveals. Below and just N. of the window is a square-headed
bays with two-centred and moulded arches springing from
piers and responds with attached shafts with moulded caps and
bases; in the W. responds, tower buttresses supplant the inward-facing shafts. The bases have all been re-tooled or
The North Aisle (9½ ft. wide) has a plain parapet with broken
pinnacle-shafts over the buttresses. In the N. wall are four
partly restored windows; each window is of three cinque-foiled
lights with vertical tracery in a two-centred head within a
continuous internal casement moulding; this last is continued
down below the windows to a wall-bench.
Dorchester, the Parish Church of Saint Peter
The South Aisle (9¼ ft. wide) continues, outside, the architectural treatment of the S. chapel. In the S. wall are three
windows uniform with those opposite in the N. aisle. The
reset S. doorway is of the late 12th century, with a two-doorway with moulded jambs. In the N. wall is a mid 19th-century archway. In the W. wall is an archway uniform with
that in the N. wall of the chancel, but in the S. respond is a
doorway with a four-centred head opening to the former rood-loft staircase.
The South Chapel (20 ft. by 11 ft.) has an embattled parapet
with crocketed pinnacles over the buttresses rising above
large and robustly carved grotesque beasts on the moulded
parapet-string. The E. window is similar to the corresponding
window in the N. chapel. In the S. wall are two partly restored
windows: of these, the eastern window is generally similar to
that in the E. wall; the western is like them in form but differs
in its mouldings and may have been reset from the E. wall of
the aisle. In the W. wall is an archway very similar to the
corresponding feature in the N. chapel, though without the
entry to the rood stair.
The Nave (47 ft. by 20¼ ft.) has N. and S. arcades of four
centred arch of two orders carved with chevron and lozenge
ornament and an outer band of enrichment; the jambs are of
two plain chamfered orders. High in the W. wall and visible
only from outside is a 17th-century doorway with remains of
a four-centred head.
The West Tower (15 ft. square) has angle buttresses and is in
three stages, with a moulded plinth, moulded strings and an
embattled parapet with pinnacles and gargoyles. The stair is
contained in a semi-octagonal projection on the N.E. The
tower arch has a moulded and two-centred head on moulded
and shafted responds with moulded caps and bases to the
shafts. The partly restored W. window is of three cinque-foiled
and transomed lights with vertical tracery in a two-centred
head within a casement moulding under a moulded label. The
partly restored W. doorway has continuous moulded jambs
and a four-centred head with a label with square return-stops.
The middle stage has, in each of the E. and W. walls, a square
headed window. In the top stage, in the E., S., and W. walls,
lighting the bell-chamber, are pairs of partly restored windows;
each window is of two cinque-foiled and transomed lights with
blind vertical tracery in a two-centred head with a label; the
upper lights are filled with pierced and cusped stone slabs. In
the N. wall is a single window, similar to the foregoing but of
The South Porch (10 ft. by 7½ ft.) is gabled to the S. but the
parapet and the gable-cross are renewals. The restored outer
archway has moulded jambs and a moulded two-centred
head under a label with remains of a carved stop. Above the
arch is a restored niche with a trefoiled head with sunk spandrels bringing it to the square. In the E. wall is a loop-light.
The lean-to Roof of the N. chapel is divided into panels by
moulded beams and subsidiary ribs with bosses at the main
intersections carved with a merchant's mark (see Fittings,
Monument 1) and a rosette; on the S. the beams are supported
on stone corbels carved as demi-figures. The roof of the S.
chapel is generally similar to the foregoing but has wall-posts
on the S. supported on corbels carved with male and female
heads. The bosses are carved with three oxen, crossed keys
and sword, crossed keys, and a cock, the last three presumably
in allusion to St. Peter. The roof of the nave is of plastered
barrel form with moulded cross and longitudinal ribs with
bosses at the intersections and shields on the N. and S. wall-plates. The bosses on the ridge are carved with a plain shield,
INRI, XPS, IHS, DNI, all in black-letter, the last with an
added inscription 'John Midway 1842', foliage, and a mitre
with two palls charged with crosses paty fitchy, presumably for
Canterbury; on the N. longitudinal rib, with flowers, etc.,
crescent and star, and three coronets in pile (if this is for the
diocese of Bristol, then the boss is an addition of 1542 or
later); on the S. longitudinal rib, with foliage, etc., a rayed
sun, and the Virgin and Child, perhaps for Salisbury diocese.
The shields on the N. and S. are painted with sacred monograms, for Jesus Christ, in black-letter. The lean-to roofs of the
aisles have moulded ribs forming panels and with bosses at
their intersections carved, in the N. aisle, with shield charged
with crossed key and sword, green-man mask, shield with
crescent and star, and palls charged with crosses paty fitchy,
presumably for Canterbury; in the S. aisle the roof is almost
entirely renewed. Stone corbels support both aisle roofs; those
on the S. wall of the S. aisle are renewed, the rest are carved
with male and female heads mostly showing contemporary
fashions in headwear; the fifth on the S. side of the N. aisle is a
capital of c. 1200 reused.
Fittings—Bells: eight; 1st by T. Bilbie, 1750; 2nd by T.
Bilbie, recast 1808; 3rd, 5th and 8th by T. Bilbie, 1734.
Books: In N. aisle, 'Breeches' Bible of 1594; The Troubles of
Jerusalem's Restauration, John White, 1646; Directions for the
Profitable reading of the Scriptures, John White, 1647. Brasses
and Indents. Brasses: In N. chapel, (1) of Sydenham Williams,
1757, Thomas Williams, 1775, Agnes, widow of first named,
1783, daughter Margaret, 1826, erected 1830. In nave, (2)
small rectangular plate, inscription illegible; (3) of [Joan
(St. Omer) widow of Robert More], inscribed scroll and
indent of figure of woman. In S. aisle, (4) of Maria Gollop,
1682, inscription plate; (5) of John Gollop, 1731, and Frances
widow of Henry Backway, 1712/3, inscription plate; (6) of
Thomas Plane, 1725, inscription plate, erected by Conyers
Place; (7) of Oliver Hayne, 1622, inscription plate. Indents:
In nave, (1–2) of plates; (see also Brasses, 3). In S. aisle, (3) of
figure, inscription plate, scroll (see Monuments etc., Floor-slab
6). In churchyard—N. of N. aisle, (4) of female figure and inscription plate, flanked by incised crosses on steps. Communion
Table: with six turned legs, upper rails with stylised voluted
ornament, plain stretchers, early 17th-century. Hatchments:
In S. aisle, (1) with lozenge-of-arms of Bertie with an escutcheon
of Gould, for Mary wife of Montagu Bertie, 2nd Earl of
Abingdon, 1757; (2) with shield-of-arms of Williams with an
escutcheon of Vavasour (?), mid 18th-century (Plate 61).
Monuments and Floor-slabs. Monuments: In chancel—in N.
wall, (1) altar-tomb set in wall-recess, with quatre-foiled and
narrow trefoil-headed panels on front, the former enclosing
conventional foliage bosses; recess with side standards and
ogee cinque-foiled and sub-cusped arch with carved spandrels
and crocketed label; in upper spandrels, carved initials HW
and a merchant's mark as on roof of N. chapel, 14th-century;
(2) of Rev. Thomas Morton Colson, 1830, and Mary his wife,
1833, grey marble tablet with quarterly shield-of-arms with
impalement; (3) of Mary Bond Colson, 1849, black and white
marble tablet; on S. wall, (4) of Elizabeth Cozens, 1821, white
marble tablet with large draped urn against grey marble
pyramidal backing, signed Gibbs, Axminster. In N. chapel—
reset against E. wall, on high podium, (5) of Sir John Williams
of Herringstone, 1617, and Elenor (Uvedall) his wife, 1625,
painted stone monument (Plate 13) of three bays divided by
Corinthian columns supporting entablatures and cupolas over
the side bays and a round arch over the middle bay; central
sarcophagus having shields of the quarterly arms of Williams
and Uvedall on the front and a cap of maintenance and the
Williams crest flanking a mirror on the apex of the coped top;
on arch above, series of shields-of-arms and on top of arch
achievement-of-arms of Williams impaling Uvedall; in side
bays, kneeling figures of man and wife reading books propped
on sloping lid of sarcophagus, and on entablature other shields-of-arms; man in armour, with metal funerary sword, woman
with cartwheel ruff and modified French-hood with tail folded
up and brought forward over the crown. In N. vestry—on N.
wall, (6) of Joshua Churchill, 1786, tablet; (7) inscription
illegible, wall-tablet with side pilasters, curved pediment,
urns and cartouche with traces of painted arms, early 18th-century. In S. chapel—on sill of E. window, (8) stone military
effigy (Plate 11) lying on side, in bascinet with short aventail,
jupon, and with damaged shield hung on stout guige over
shoulder, late 14th-century; on sill of S.W. window, (9) stone
military effigy (Plates 11, 20), similar to last but perhaps slightly
earlier and with enriched bascinet and sabatons of overlapping
plate scales. On S. wall, (10) of George Clark, 1846, Frances his
wife, 1814, and their sons Thomas and Charles, tablet with
Gothic framing in the 14th-century style; (11) of John Bascombe Lock, 1842, sarcophagus-shaped black and white
tablet with carved flag and shako, signed Slade. In N. aisle—on
N. wall, (12) of William Churchill of Colliton, 1799, Jane his
mother, 1801, and daughter Sophia, 1800, and another, large
white marble tablet with shield-of-arms of Churchill; (13)
of Mary Shergold, 1840, white marble tablet on black marble
backing; (14) of Alfred Gregory, 1848, tablet; (15) of John
Gordon, 1774, marble tablet with urn and shield-of-arms of
Gordon; (16) of Mary Blandy, 1844, tablet with shield-of-arms of Blandy; (17) of George Churchill, 1814, marble tablet
in the form of a parchment scroll held by a hand at the top,
against a coloured marble oval backing; at W. end, (18) of
Denzel, Lord Holles, Baron Ifield, 1679/80, erected by his
nephew's son and heir, John, Duke of Newcastle, 1699, marble
monument (Plate 13) with reclining figure of man in Roman
dress on gadrooned sarcophagus with drapery and cherubs'
heads above, all recessed between side pilasters supporting an
entablature surmounted by urns over the pilasters and a
central achievement-of-arms, with the arms defaced, against a
pedestal festooned with flowers and carrying cushions and
coronet, similar achievement on sarcophagus also defaced; two
standing cherubs, now detached, were on flanking pedestals
destroyed when the monument was moved to this position;
railings once protecting it have also been destroyed. In S.
aisle—on S. wall, (19) of Henry Duncombe, 1788, white
marble tablet with wreath and urn and shield-of-arms of
Duncombe impaling Fitz-Ellis on coloured marble apron;
(20) of John Willis, 1834, tablet with shield-of-arms of Willis,
signed Lester of Dorchester; (21) of Henry Tooze, 1828,
Barrack Master at Dorchester, and Susanna his wife, 1846,
white marble Tuscan tablet, signed Gregory, Dorch.; (22)
of Thomas Hardy of Melcombe Regis, 1599, wall-monument
with side pilasters, enriched entablature, obelisks and achievement-of-arms of Hardy. Floor-slabs: In nave, (1) of Henry
Plowman, 1842; (2) of John Prince, 1779; (3) of . . . Willis,
1748; (4) of Henry Duncombe, 1788. In N. aisle, (5) of Mary,
wife of Robert Willis, 1748. In S. aisle, (6) of R. Nichols,
reused slab (see Brasses etc., Indent 3); (7) of Mary, widow of
John Salt Lovat, 187.
Plate: includes cup, 8½ ins. high, with bell-shaped bowl,
with two bands of engraved decoration, maker's mark T and
date-letter for 1638, stem with knop and flared foot, Elizabethan; stand paten for foregoing with maker's mark IB; cup,
7½ ins. high, with bowl with straight tapering sides, band of
engraved decoration and maker's mark NW with mullet
below, c. 1645, stem with knop and moulded foot, Elizabethan;
stand paten for foregoing with maker's mark DA in cusped
shield and added engraved shield-of-arms of Pitt; stand paten,
113/8 ins. diam., with maker's mark TC in cusped shield, dateletter for 1684, added shield-of-arms of Pitt and inscription
'Not from superfluity of Estate, But for to Honour the Lords
own Feast'; pair of patens, 9 ins. diam., maker's mark PS,
date-letter for 1805 and later engraving of Gothic design, given
by Henry Jacob; flagon, 13 ins. high, with straight sides, moulded foot, scrolled handle and domed lid and date-letter for
1841, given by Benjamin Jacob in 1842 'in testimony of sincere
and devoted attachment to the Established Church'; flagon
of pewter (Plate 24), 14 ins. high, with straight tapering sides,
scrolled handle and moulded lid, with worn maker's mark
(for Lester (?) of Dorchester), inscribed 'Feb 7th 1676 The
Gift of Edward Lester which is to remain for the use of the
Ringers of Dorchester for ever', now in Dorchester Museum;
three alms-dishes of pewter, 9¼ ins. diam., 18th-century.
Pulpit (Plate 28): of oak, six sides of octagon with two heights
of arcaded and enriched panels, enriched and bracketed cornice
and enriched and panelled stem, early 17th-century. Royal
Arms: In tower, over panelling on W. wall, carved wood,
Victorian. Table: In S. chapel, of oak, with turned legs,
moulded rails and stretchers, late 17th-century. Miscellanea: In
S. chapel—stone fragment with chevron ornament, late 12th-century, and moulded fragment, 13th-century. To boundary
of churchyard, wrought-iron railings with spear-headed uprights, elaborate open-work standards at each end and flanking
central gate, early 19th-century. In churchyard wall to N.E.,
stone archway with four-centred head and chamfered jambs,
16th or 17th-century, reused materials.
b(4) The Parish Church of St. George, Fordington,
stands towards the E. end of the town. The walls are of
rubble, mostly ashlar-faced and with freestone dressings.
The roofs are covered with tiles and slates. The church
stands on the site of a Roman cemetery (see Pt. 3,
pp. 569, 574). In excavations made in 1907 for modern
alterations old foundations were revealed aligned E. and
W. beneath the 12th-century S. arcade and aligned N.
and S. between the 12th/15th-century composite pier on
the S. and the position of the pier now opposite. Such
may indicate the positions of the S. wall of the nave
and the chancel arch of an older church. In the present
church, no doubt the S. doorway is reset from this early
church; it is of the end of the 11th century. Other
foundations may have been no more than later sleeper
walls. The S. arcade and South Aisle together with the
South Porch were built late in the 12th century. No
evidence remains for a N. arcade and N. aisle of that
date. The South Transept was added probably in the
14th century but new arches between it and the nave
and S. aisle were inserted in the late 15th century; it
underwent some remodelling in 1754. Also in the late
15th century the West Tower was added, partly within
the nave, the S. aisle shortened and the S. porch enlarged
and heightened. A new chancel was built in the 18th
century, and has since been destroyed. In 1833 the North
Aisle and a N. arcade of two bays were added. A 15th-century window from the old N. wall of the nave is
reset in Old Vicarage House (Monument 141).
In 1907 a very large scheme of rebuilding and eastward extension of the church was begun which has
altered the character of the building: a new N. arcade
of three bays was built in replacement of that of
1833; the floor was lowered and the S. arcade underpinned and rebuilt on new sub-bases, and new clear-storey windows were formed above; the old nave and
aisles were extended eastward to double their length
and a new Chancel and South Chapel added, all to the
designs of Jem Feacey of Dorchester; vestries and an
organ-chamber planned N. of the new chancel were not
completed. (Dorset Procs. xxx (1909), 164–95.)
The church has a handsome W. tower and the
sculptured relief of c. 1100 over the S. doorway is
Architectural Description—The Nave (42 ft. by 20¼ ft.) has a
modern N. arcade. Of the S. arcade, the three eastern bays are
modern; the next arch is of the 15th century, two-centred and
moulded with shafted responds, and opens into the S. transept;
the remaining three bays are of the late 12th century, underpinned and rebuilt below the bases in 1907. The arches of the
last are two-centred and of two chamfered orders, the westernmost arch being curtailed by the insertion of the tower; the
E. respond has a chamfered impost; the first pier is cylindrical
centred and of one chamfered order, opens into the S. aisle;
further S. the wall has been rebuilt, probably in 1754, and
contains a reset late 14th-century window of two trefoiled
ogee lights in a square head. The date 1754 is modelled in the
plastering of the N. wall.
The South Aisle (8 ft. wide) W. of the S. transept has, in the
S. wall, a window all modern except the partly-restored
opening. The reset S. doorway is of c. 1100 and has moulded
jambs and three-sided head; the stones forming the head
(Plate 97) are sculptured in low relief, above the moulding,
with a battle scene including a central mounted figure of St.
George, nimbed and holding a lance with a pennon bearing
and has a scalloped capital and a base with plain spur-ornaments; the second pier, also cylindrical, has a moulded capital
and a base which comprises a reused capital with spurs cut on
the upper surface of the abacus to form the new base. Both
piers stand on modern sub-bases, one with scrolled foliate
spurs, and may themselves have been rebuilt.
Fordington, the Parish Church of Saint George
The North Aisle (12 ft. wide) includes three modern bays
to the E. and the rest of 1833. The latter has to the N. wall two-stage buttresses between windows with splayed two-centred
heads and continuous jambs, and without mullions. The W.
wall is gabled and has a doorway and a smaller window, both
with splayed heads and jambs uniform with the N. windows.
All the features described are of 1833.
The South Transept (11¾ ft. by 17½ ft.) has a modern E.
archway and containing wall. In the rebuilt S. wall is a
restored 15th-century window of three cinque-foiled lights with
vertical tracery in a two-centred head with casement-moulded
reveals and a label. In the W. wall a 15th-century arch, fourhis cross; before him he transfixes one foe and others lie dead;
behind him are two foe, kneeling and with hands raised in
supplication. The saint is unarmed except for his lance, the
other figures are armed and wear conical helmets with nasals;
the long oval-pointed shields are carried on guiges; the spears
are comparatively short. The subject is said to be St. George at
Antioch. In the W. wall is a partly restored late 14th-century
window of two cinque-foiled lights with tracery in a two-centred head.
The West Tower (12 ft. by 13 ft.) is of the 15th century and
of three stages with a moulded plinth, embattled parapet,
pinnacles and gargoyles; parapet, pinnacles and the head of the
stair-turret are modern. The two-centred tower arch is
moulded, with the mouldings partly continued down the
shafted responds. The W. doorway has moulded jambs and
two-centred head with a label; S. of it is a small square-headed recess; the partly restored W. window is of four
cinque-foiled ogee lights with vertical tracery in a two-centred
head with a label; there are trefoiled heads below the transom.
In the second stage the E. and W. walls each have a small rectangular window. The bell-chamber has, in the E., S. and W.
walls, pairs of windows each of two trefoiled and transomed
lights with vertical tracery in a two-centred head with a
label. In the N. wall there is a single window, similar but of
The South Porch (8 ft. widening to 9 ft. by 11¾ ft.), partly of
the 12th century, was heightened and extended to the S. late
in the 15th century; it has a flat roof and low parapet wall with
chamfered string and moulded coping. The entrance has a
two-centred head with a continuous chamfer. In the E. wall
is a small early 19th-century trefoil light.
Roofs: On the E. face of the W. tower, below the modern
nave ceiling, are traces of a former barrel ceiling and a pitched
roof. The roof of the S. transept is of plastered barrel form;
the date 1754 on the N. wall may refer to it.
Fittings—Altar (Plate 4): In N. aisle, towards E. end, of
freestone, 7¼ ft. by 2½ ft. by 3 ft. high, with arcaded front and
ends, moulded oak top and Purbeck stone platform, each
arcade bay with blind panelling of window-tracery form, with
paired trefoil-headed panels and sex-foiled and sunk spandrels
all within an embracing continuously roll-moulded arch with
two-centred head, c. 1390, top modern, platform late 18th-century. Stonework brought from Salisbury Cathedral in
1958–9, where previously it had been adapted by James Wyatt
as the high altar, the present platform then being the altar slab.
Subsequently it had been moved to the Lady Chapel and
eventually relegated to the cloister. The present front in five
bays is probably the original length; the ends have been
reduced to the present 1½ bays.
Bells: six; 1st, 2nd, 4th, 1850; 3rd, 5th, with the founder's
stamp, are inscribed 'Sancta Katerina ora pro nobis' and 'In
multis annis resonet campan[a] Johannis' respectively, late 15th-century; 6th, by George Purdue, 1602. Bracket: In S. transept—
on S. wall, small, square and chamfered. Chest: in S. aisle,
4 ft. 2 ins. long, of plain oak planks, 18th-century. Coffin-lid:
loose outside W. door, broken, with double hollow chamfer
and raised foliated cross, 14th-century. Communion Rails:
with turned vase-shaped balusters and altered moulded rail,
c. 1700 and from Milton Abbey. Doors: two; in entrance to
S. porch, formerly in S. doorway, of nail-studded battens and
with strap-hinges, dated 1717, enlarged on removal to present
position; in lower part of tower arch, in two leaves with
shaped panels, upper panels filled with carved rococo foliage,
in frame with fluted side pilasters supporting an entablature,
Bavarian, 18th-century, reset here 1935. Font: octagonal, bowl
with quatrefoil enclosing shield on each face, moulded underside with paterae, panelled stem and moulded base, 15th-century. Gallery: in N. aisle, at W. end, with panelled
front and moulded rail, painted and gilded, probably 1833,
remodelled and reduced in size in present century. Glass:
in N. aisle windows, small figures of the Apostles, 19th-century, reset.
Monuments: In nave, Roman tombstone, discovered under
corner of porch, (see Pt. 3, p. 574). In N. aisle—on N. wall,
(1) of Bennett Harvey, 1807, Elizabeth his wife, 1823, Thomas
Dymond, 1831, Ann his wife, 1836, and others, sarcophagus-shaped wall-tablet with draped urn, signed Hellyer, Weymouth. In S. aisle—on W. wall, (2) of Rev. John Palmer, 1829,
and Elizabeth his sister, 1812, octagonal tablet with small
draped sarcophagus, signed E. Lester, Dorchester. In churchyard—against N. wall, (3) of Edward William Cave, 1821,
headstone with metal inset of female figure and urn; (4) of
Richard How, 1667, one panel from a table-tomb; S. of nave,
(5) of Robert Tapp . . ., 1670, table-tomb; (6) to Owen
Wallis, 1643, table-tomb. Niche: in S. aisle—in S. wall, recess
with segmental-pointed head, 14th-century, sill lowered.
Painting: in S. chapel, Descent from the Cross, after Rubens,
18th-century copy. Piscinae: two; in chancel, modern but
incorporating elaborate 13th-century capital with scroll foliage
from a pillar piscina; in N. chapel, in N. wall, recess with
reset defaced drain, mediaeval. Plate: includes a silver altarcross, given in 1812, made up with small repoussée plaques
of figure-subjects, angels and filigree work, made by Pieter
Meeter, with the Leeuwarden mark for 1765, and a brass
alms-dish, with formal leaf pattern in the centre, S. German,
16th-century. Pulpit: of stone, octagonal, with panelled sides
and cartouches inscribed: 1592 E.R. 34; T.R., R.I., W; 1833
W.R. IV; I.T., I.H., W; 1912 G.R. 2; R.G.B., W.W.R., C.H.
1912, said to indicate the year of erection and changes in
position. Royal Arms: In S. aisle, of cast iron, Hanoverian
before 1800. Stalls: in chancel, four on N. side, three on S.
side, of oak with shaped elbow rests, shaped and scrolled
divisions with cherub-heads and turned finials, and seats with
dentilled fronts, 17th-century, restored and with modern work,
brought from abroad in 1912. Miscellanea: In nave—in bench
ends, two panels carved with tracery, late 14th-century,
Continental. In S. aisle—in niche, round stone bowl with
gadroon ornament and circular stem, probably a font, 17th-century; upper part of head of stone figure, 13th-century. In
S. transept—flanking S. window, small stone roundels with
incised plain crosses, early mediaeval, perhaps 11th-century,
b(5) Former Presbyterian Meeting House in Colliton
Street was built in 1719; the congregation later became
Unitarian. It is now much altered and used as a garage.
The S. front has a moulded wood cornice, three symmetrically placed windows with segmental heads and a brick string
arched over the central window; modern garage doors have
been inserted. The N. front is partly masked but repeats the
design of the S. front. In both the E. and W. walls are five
blocked windows. The floor level has been lowered and the
galleries removed; the only original features remaining inside
are a deep coved cornice and a central lantern light.
b(6) Former Baptist Chapel, at the junction of
Salisbury Street and High Street, Fordington, of stone
rubble with brick dressings and the E. front faced with
stucco, was built in 1830. Later in the 19th century a
new roof was built with the eaves at a lower level, small
gables being formed over the upper windows.
The E. front is slightly bowed on plan with stucco pilasters
at the corners, gable treated as a pediment, central doorway
with moulded architrave and hood carried on console brackets
between square windows, and round-headed windows above.
The S. side has segmental-headed windows below and round-headed windows above rising into small gables. Inside, galleries round the N., E. and S. sides are carried on slender
iron columns of quatrefoil plan. A baptistery under the floor
has been filled in.
b(7) Former Chapel, in Durngate Street, of brick
with front faced in stucco, is probably the Independent
or Congregational Chapel founded in 1776 and later
used as a British School (Hutchins II, 405); it is now
used as a storehouse.
The S. front has a moulded cornice and parapet, two semi-circular-headed windows with plain architraves, imposts and
keystones, and modern doorways. The E. side has a single
semicircular-headed window. Against the S. wall and crossing
the window openings is a beam which may have carried a
b(8) Former Chapel, in Durngate Street, of brick
rendered in stucco, is probably the Wesleyan Chapel
opened 22 December 1840 (D.C.C. 24 December 1840).
It now forms part of a printing works.
The building is extremely plain; the S. end is gabled, with a
central doorway and three windows with square heads. The
interior has been gutted.
b(9) Shire Hall (Plate 96) stands on the N. side of
High West Street. The walls are of brick faced on the
street front with Portland stone ashlar and the roofs
are covered with modern slates. It was built in 1797
and the architect was Thomas Hardwick of London
(Hutchins II, 372). It contains the Council Chamber,
originally the Nisi Prius Court, and the Crown Court,
which is now owned by the Trades Union Congress
and which was opened in July 1956 as a memorial to
the Tolpuddle Martyrs, who were tried here in 1834.
There are later additions to the N. A house adjoining
on the E. (Monument 78) was bought in 1828 for the
Dorchester, Shire Hall
The S. front has a plain plinth, a flat string at first-floor level
and a simple cornice and parapet; it is symmetrical and of seven
bays. The centre part, comprising three bays, projects slightly
and is pedimented, and the ground floor is rusticated and
contains three doorways with round heads, keystones and
plain imposts continued across as strings. The ground-floor
windows in the flanking bays are plain, with round heads, and
the upper-floor windows have plain rectangular openings,
all with double-hung sashes with thin glazing bars. The doorways contain original panelled doors and fanlights. On an E.
quoin, in lettering contemporary with the building, is inscribed the mileage to Hyde Park Corner etc. The E. and N.
elevations are largely concealed; the W. is of brick with a
stone plinth and brick dentil-cornice and has one original
window with a round head of gauged brick and two modern
Inside, the arrangement and the fittings are largely original;
the old Crown Court, to the E. (Plate 96), has a shallow
domed recess behind the Judge's chair containing the Royal
Arms of George III, in plaster. The benches, witness-box and
dock have flush beaded panelling; the galleries have similarly
panelled fronts and are supported on Roman-Doric columns
with an entablature. The Council Chamber, to the W., has a
similar recess containing the Royal Arms carved in wood. In
the Grand Jury Room the modern fireplace has a late 18th-century surround with fluted side pilasters, frieze carved with
female figures and cornice-shelf. The stairs are of stone, with
square iron balusters and moulded handrail. All the doors are
panelled, with ovolo-moulded framing, and have moulded
b(10) Town Hall, of two storeys and with walls of
brick with stone dressings and a tiled roof, designed by
Benjamin Ferrey, was erected in 1847–48; Samuel Slade
was the builder. It replaced the town hall of 1792
which stood a little further W. across the entrance to
North Square. The new building originally comprised a
corn exchange on the ground floor and an assembly hall
and council chamber on the upper floor. Later in the
19th century a new market and police station were
added to the N., now converted for use as a second
assembly hall, a clock-turret was added to the S.W.
corner and a porch to the middle of the S. elevation. A
lantern above the roof was removed in 1863 (Borough
Council Minute Book) and the parapet was embattled
early in the 20th century.
The ground floor has an arcade of five arches to the S. and
two to the W. all of moulded stonework, with four-centred
heads and labels. The first floor has five windows with square
heads to the S. and a big oriel window to the W., segmental
on plan, containing two tiers of seven lights separated by
solid stone panels. The glass is set in cast-iron glazing bars.
A wing to the N. containing the staircase has a W. doorway
with four-centred head under a shallow gabled porch and a
square-headed window above of three transomed lights.
The assembly hall on the first floor has an open timber
roof in five bays with arch-braced collar-beam trusses springing from moulded stone corbels painted with shields-of-arms
(Hutchins II, 406). Two fireplaces have stone surrounds in the
Tudor style and mid 19th-century grates.
Chair, in the assembly hall, known as Judge Jeffreys' chair,
has a panelled back with cresting incorporating scroll-work and
a crown, shaped armrests and cabriole legs; late 17th-century.
Civic Plate etc. The Corporation plate includes a pair of
maces, a beadle's staff, five borough seals, two bailiff's seals,
and a Statute of Labourers pass seal. Now in the Dorchester
Museum are also seven standard measures. Maces, of silver gilt,
2 ft. 10½ ins. long, with maker's mark TT and date-letter for
1728; each shaft with two moulded collars and fluted knop
engraved '28 Dec. 1728', large embossed head (Plate 39)
surmounted by closed crown and linked to shaft and top collar
by open-work brackets, on top of head the royal arms and
supporters with initials GR (for George II), on sides of head
crowned emblems of England, Scotland and Ireland in
cartouches, the one containing the rose inscribed 'Maior Bal.
Ald. et Burg. de Dorchester C. Dorset'; both maces have been
regilded. Staff, 5 ft. 11 ins. long, of wood painted black, with
brass ferrule and silver knob, engraved on the last the arms of
Dorchester, marks worn away, 18th-century.
Seals (Plate 36): Borough, (i) of latten, 1½ ins. diam., c. 1300,
comprising two dies with pierced lugs for register, obverse the
three leopards of England in a shield within a border inscribed
'S. Communitatis Burgi Dorcestriæ', reverse the head of
Edward I full face in a quatrefoil within a border inscribed
'Caput Domini Edwardi Regis Angliæ'; (ii) of copper, oval,
25/8 ins. long, probably 1610, with device of castle with three
towers with cupolas within a border inscribed 'Sigillum
Balliorum et Burgensium Burgi de Dorchester in Comitatu
Dorset'; (iii) of silver, 17/8 ins. diam., probably 1630, with device
of embattled castle charged with the Stuart royal arms all
within a border inscribed 'Sig. Maior Bal. Ald. et Burg. de
Dorchester C. Dorset'; (iv) of silver, replica of (iii), except the
inscription reads 'The Mayor Aldermen and Burgesses of
Dorchester Dorset 1836'; (v) of copper, 15/8 ins. diam., positive,
obverse with device of castle and royal arms as on (iii) and (iv)
but all upon a shield, border inscribed 'The Mayor Aldermen
and Burgesses of Dorchester 1836'. Bailiff's, (vi) of latten,
1 5/16 ins. diam., 14th-century, with device of embattled castle
with three towers charged with the arms of France ancient
and England quarterly all within a border inscribed 'Sigillum
Ballivorum Dorcestre', hexagonal stem now broken off; (vii)
of silver, 13/16 in. diam., late 16th-century, with device of a rose
surrounded by an inscription 'Ball. de Dorchester'. Statute
of Labourers, (viii) of latten, 1 in. diam., flared stem with
pierced trefoiled head and suspension loop, the whole 1½ ins.
tall, 14th-century, inscribed 'dorchester' in the middle between
foliage sprigs and 'comitatus dors' in the border, all in blackletter.
Weight and Measure Standards: (i) Bushel Measure, of bell
metal, dated 1601, 1 ft. 8 ins. in diam. and 10½ ins. high, with
two handles, three feet and band inscribed 'Elizabeth Dei
Gracia Angliae Franciae et Hiberniae Regina 1601' surmounted
and interrupted by ER monograms and Tudor badges; (ii)
Set of six measures, of bronze, all by I. and R. Warner,
London, and inscribed 'Borough of Dorchester 1835': 1 gal.,
1 pt., ½ pt., 1 gill, ½ gill, 1 quarter.
b(11) Town Pump, at the junction of South Street with
High East Street and High West Street, consists of a
Portland stone obelisk with pedestal-base, rustication and ball
finial. The rustication includes representations of fossils. On
the N. is the inscription 'The Town Pump. This obelisk was
erected A.D. 1784 on the site of the cupola or ancient market
house'. The stonemason was Nathaniel Grey; blacksmithwork was done by William Kerley. It has modern street
d(12) Grey's Bridge, carrying the London Road over the
river Frome 335 yds. N.N.E. of the church of St. George,
Fordington, is of three unequal spans. It is of local stone ashlar
and was built in 1748; the name and date are cut in an original
tablet set in the parapet wall. The round arches have moulded
archivolts and spring from restored cutwaters. There is a
flat string at road level and a plain parapet wall with weathered
coping and square returned wing walls. (Hutchins II, 375.)
b(13) Great and Little Mohun's Bridges carry the road to
Charminster over the river Frome (689912). Hutchins (II, 375)
records repairs to these bridges ordered in the reign of Charles I,
and the small side spans of Great Mohun's Bridge, to the S.,
may in part antedate them, but the main span of the bridge
was reconstructed and widened in 1782; Little Mohun's Bridge
was rebuilt in 1775 (Quarter Sessions Record Book III, 127,
Great Mohun's Bridge has a segmental arch of brick faced
with stone between two small roughly pointed stone arches,
and brick parapets.
Little Mohun's Bridge, on the Borough boundary, has
three small segmental arches with stone facing and rusticated
voussoirs. One of the brick parapets carries a metal plate
inscribed 'MB of the B of D 1835'.
b(14) Grove Bridge, over the river Frome (688911), a
single arch of brick with Portland stone dressings, was built
in 1841 to carry the new extension of the Maiden Newton
turnpike road from the W. end of Charminster into Dorchester, by-passing Charminster village. The builders were John
Roper and Son. (Maiden Newton Turnpike Trust and Charminster Hill Committee, Minutes.)
Railway Station, see p. 416.
b(15) Marabout Barracks, N.W. of the town, on the N.
side of Poundbury Road (686908), were established in 1794
when the Dorset Volunteer Rangers, later to become the
Queen's Own Dorset Yeomanry, were raised. The original
buildings, designed by James Johnson and John Sanders (fn. 1) in a
plain, utilitarian style and built by John Fentiman and Son,
were completed in 1795. They included a central block
comprising officers' quarters and mess, now married quarters,
and two detached wings comprising men's quarters, stables
and stores; of these last only the E. wing remains, now
administrative offices, stores and drill hall. These buildings
were ranged along the S. side of the site with guardroom,
cookhouses and storehouses against the S. boundary behind
them, and with a straw barn at each end. The cookhouses and
barns survive though remodelled and put to other uses.
Along the W. side of the site the Riding School and the N.
part of the Hospital are probably of 1799. The old Canteen
in the S.W. corner of the site may be of 1799 or of the early
The Married Quarters occupy a two-storey block with brick
walls partly stuccoed and slate-covered roofs, E-shaped on
plan. The main front to the N. in eleven bays has a parapet
and central round-headed doorway and hung-sash windows.
Two wings project to the S. with a two-storey porch between
them. The Administrative Block is a plain rectangular building
of two storeys in red and brown brick with a slate-covered
roof; doorways and windows are plain with cambered arched
brick heads. The Drill Hall at the E. end is of one storey and
was largely reconstructed after a fire c. 1919. The Riding
School stands on sloping ground with ammunition stores
under part of it. It is of one storey of brick, except for the W.
wall which is part of the boundary wall of the site and is of
rubble, and has large round-headed windows set in shallow
recesses. The N. end has been rebuilt. The Hospital is a plain
two-storey brick building with a later porch added and with
hung-sash windows under segmental-arched brick heads.
b(16) The Prison was built in 1790–92 to replace the unsatisfactory County Gaol which had been erected at the bottom of
High East Street in 1784. It was designed by William Blackburn
who had been working with John Howard, the prison
reformer, and the builder was John Fentiman of Newington
Butts (Dorset Procs. LXXVIII (1956), 95; H. M. Colvin, English
Architects (1954), 78, 204). The cell blocks have been rebuilt but
the gateway of Blackburn's prison survives; it is of rusticated
Portland stone and has a semicircular-arched head under a
pediment. A small brick building may have been a workshop
but it has been completely remodelled.
b(17) Dorchester County Hospital, of stone and with
tiled roofs, was designed by Benjamin Ferrey; the N. wing
was opened in May 1841 and the central part in 1846; these
formed an L-shaped plan. The S. wing and chapel were completed by 1862 (Hutchins II, 406), the whole then forming
more or less a rectangular U-shaped plan. The hospital is built
in the Jacobean style, with stone-mullioned windows with
moulded eared labels.
b(18) Damer's Hospital, formerly the Union Workhouse,
S.W. of the town on the N. side of Damer's Road in the old
parish of Fordington, is of two storeys. The E. front is of
squared and coursed stone with brick dressings to the windows;
the other walls are stuccoed and the roofs are covered with
slates. It was built in 1836 to the designs of George Wilkinson
(P.R.O., M.H. 12/2777); subsequently a chapel was added on
the S. and there are extensive modern additions on the W.
The Hospital is one of a number of workhouses in England
with a remarkable plan, devised for this special purpose,
inspired by Sampson Kempthorne's designs accompanying
the First Report of the Poor Law Commissioners of 1835.
(Cf. Poole (22), Wareham (10), Weymouth (16); also
R.C.H.M. City of Cambridge, Monument 92.)
The plan consists of a Greek cross with ranges across the
ends of the arms. The E. front has a pedimented projection
in the centre defining three bays, a third of the total length.
The windows have double-hung sashes.
Damer's Hospital, Plan
b(19) Napper's Mite, former almshouses on the E.
side of South Street, is of one and two storeys. The walls
are of squared and coursed local stone and the roofs are
tiled. Directions for founding the charity were made by
Sir Robert Napper of Middlemarsh in 1615, who had
already provided for the endowment; these were implemented by his son Nathaniel in 1616. The building,
originally for ten poor men, consists of four ranges
enclosing a small square courtyard with a large room,
said by Hutchins to have been the chapel, in the S.
range; there are indications that the E. range was the
last to be completed. Most of the W. range and whole
W. front was rebuilt in 1842; the previous design of the
ground-floor front was reproduced, but the upper part
is an entire innovation. (Contract for rebuilding W.
front, in D.C.R.O.; see also J. Buckler's drawing dated
1828, B.M. Add. MS. 36361.) The ten small single
rooms for the almsmen were more or less altered in
1954–5 upon conversion of the premises into shops and
The street front has a moulded string at first-floor level,
plain eaves and, in the centre, a gable with bell-turret on the
apex. The ground floor contains an open loggia with an arcade
of nine bays of three-centred arches above a dwarf wall; the
centre and the northernmost arches are continued down to
form doorways and over the centre doorway is a tracery panel
of 1842 containing two blank shields; the back wall of brick
contains four two-light windows. Above, on the first floor, are
five two-light windows with stone mullions and, near the
centre, a widely projecting stone bracket with battlemented
cornice supporting a round clock at right-angles to the wallface. The clock was brought from the old Poor Law Institution,
built in 1745 and demolished in 1835. In the gable is a renewed
inscription 'Napper's Mite 1616'.
Plan prior to alterations of 1954
Access into the courtyard is by passageways through the
centre of the E. and W. ranges. The E., N. and S. ranges are
of one storey. In the courtyard the roughly arched entrances
to the passageways are under gables, the E. with a chimney-stack at the apex, and the doorways to the rooms are plain
except in the S.E. corner where the entrance to the chapel
has chamfered jambs and four-centred head; the two windows
in each of the N. and S. ranges are original and of two lights
with stone mullions. The E. front has a gabled porch in the
centre and gabled ends to the N. and S. ranges. The porch has a
restored doorway with flat triangular head and a restored
two-light window above. The E. window of the chapel is
original, of three lights with round openings and sunk spandrels under a square head with a moulded label; the remaining
windows are similar to those in the courtyard.
Inside, three of the rooms have modern internal porches;
the doorways to the corner rooms are original and of stone
with chamfered jambs and four-centred heads. The original
fireplaces have been partly blocked. Reset in the chapel is a
stone tablet with the shield-of-arms of Napper and the
inscription 'Le Mite Nappeir Built to the honour of God bie
Sir Robert Napper Knight Ann. . . . . Xenodochium', and in
the same room a fireplace has been formed with stone jambs
from old window openings and a flat four-centred head from
a doorway, formerly in the boundary wall facing Charles
Street, dated 1636, i.e. the year Gerard, the grandson of Sir
Robert Napper, revised the ordinances of the almshouse and
the payments to the pensioners.
b(20) Chubb's Almshouses, North Square, of two storeys
with brick and rubble walls and slated roof, were endowed
by Matthew Chubb who died in 1617; the present building
is dated 1822 and replaces one which was dated 1620 (Hutchins
II, 369). Doorways and windows have chamfered stone
dressings and eared labels; the date 1822 is recorded on a panel
over the doorway.
b(21) School, Holloway Road, Fordington, of one storey
with rendered walls and slated roof, was built in the second
quarter of the 19th century.
b(22) School, W. of The Grove (688909), built c. 1835, has
stuccoed walls divided into bays by plain pilasters; the gable
ends are treated as pediments. A bell above the roof is contained
in an iron cage. The original building comprised a single
schoolroom; it has been extended at both ends.
Theatre, see Monument (52) below.
b(23) Colliton House, on the W. side of Glyde
Path Road 200 yds. W.N.W. of the church of St. Peter,
is of two storeys with attics; the walls are of coursed local
stone, faced and squared, and the roofs are tiled. It
was built on an L-shaped plan in the 17th century,
extended S.W. in c. 1700 and very extensively remodelled in the second quarter of the 18th century;
there are modern additions on the S. Formerly the
home of the Churchills, it is now offices.
The N. front of the E.-W. range in five main bays has an
18th-century pedimented timber porch centrally; over the
inner doorway is a cartouche carved with the arms of
Churchill. To the S. are three gables finishing in massive
chimney-stacks with blind arcading on the sides, the arches
having stone archivolts and keystones. One of the keystones
carved with a grotesque mask may be reused. The windows
are of the 18th century and fitted with hung sashes, except
in the single-storey S.W. wing which has stone-mullioned
windows of c. 1700.
The interior retains a staircase and some panelling of the
18th century, but it was partly refitted in c. 1800.
The Brewhouse just S. of the house was demolished in 1947
and the brick front subsequently re-erected in the Dorset
County Museum. The entrance has brick side pilasters, a
round head with moulded archivolt, moulded stone imposts
and a keystone carved with a human mask with open mouth,
much weathered; above is a stone inscribed F C 1729. The
Stables, W. of the house, with stone walls and slate-covered
roofs, were built in the 18th century and probably incorporate
some earlier walls. The Cellars, entered through doorways in
the boundary-wall on the W. side of Glyde Path Road, are
of brick with brick vaults and contain an ice-well at the S.
end. The Boundary-wall, of the 17th or 18th century, is of
alternate bands of flint and freestone but much patched and
rebuilt. In it was a reset keystone, now in the Dorset County
Museum, carved with a human face fringed with hair, with
long ears and scrolled horns, perhaps 17th-century; this has
been classed with the keystones over the brewhouse doorway
and in the chimney-stack of Colliton House and a Romano-British origin suggested for them (see p. 536).
b(24) Wollaston House, on the S. side of Durngate Street, is of two storeys with attics and cellars;
the walls are of brick in Flemish bond and the roofs are
covered with slates and tiles. It was built in 1786 and
has lately been altered and adapted to a school.
The house is a dated building of simple distinction.
Wollaston House, Plan
The main front is symmetrical and of five bays; it has a
shallow ashlar plinth, a small plaster cornice with fluting and
paterae in the frieze and a parapet with thin stone coping and
urns at the corners. The porch in the centre has Ionic columns
and pilasters with fluted necking supporting an entablature
with fluting to resemble triglyphs in the frieze; the doorway
has a round head and contains a panelled door and fanlight.
The window openings are plain, with flat gauged brick heads.
The S. front is stuccoed; it has a central doorway with a
round-headed window above. The E. side has been altered.
Inside, between the hall and stairhall is a square vestibule
bounded by four semicircular arches. The stair has open
strings with simple applied scroll-brackets and square balusters.
In the cellar is a foundation stone inscribed 'This stone was laid
by Robt. Stickland gent, and Jane his wife May 1 1786'.
b(25) South Lodge (Plate 95), on the N. side of
South Walks Road, is of two storeys with attics. The
walls are of brick and the front is faced with stucco; the
roofs are slate-covered. It was built c. 1760 and the S.
front was stuccoed and renovated early in the 19th
century; there are later additions on the N.
The house contains a room with elegant and decorative rococo plasterwork and a chinoiserie staircase.
The S. front is symmetrical, of five bays, and has a central
porch, plain window openings with double-hung sashes with
thin glazing bars, a simple cornice and low parapet. The porch
has Roman-Doric columns and pilasters with full entablature
carrying an early 19th-century wrought-iron balustrade of
Gothic design; centrally on the first floor a french window
opens to the balcony so formed. The glazed front door with
marginal panes and the sashes in the windows are all early
19th-century renewals. The N. side has a coved cornice and a
projecting staircase-bay in the centre; the staircase window
has a round head, two ground-floor windows have original
casements and the first-floor windows segmental heads with
key-blocks; the doorway has part of an 18th-century hood.
Inside, the walls of the S.E. room are decorated above the
plain dado with rococo plasterwork of much delicacy arranged
in panels with C-scrolled, scalloped and foliated borders framing small vases of flowers, brackets, etc.; the cornice combines
Gothic and Chinese forms and the wood fireplace-surround
has a pulvinated frieze carved with bay-leaves, a frieze-panel
with figure subject and an enriched cornice-shelf. The staircase has open bracketed strings, turned newels, moulded
and ramped handrail ending in a spiral and balustrading
consisting of lattice-work panels.
The Greenhouse adjoining on the W., with sliding sashes,
may be of the early 19th century.
High East Street and High West Street form the
main E.-W. axis of the town. Improvements to these
streets were carried out in the 18th century, especially
in 1790 when houses near St. Peter's church, which
projected into the street, were pulled down. With
Cornhill and South Street they form the main thoroughfares and are therefore described here before the minor
streets, which follow in alphabetical order.
High West Street, High East Street and Cornhill
Monuments (26) to (107) are mostly substantial
buildings and unless otherwise described are of two
storeys with attics or three storeys, with brick walls and
tiled or slated roofs. The elevations of Monuments (26)
to (38), (49) to (77) and (83) to (91) are shown in drawings
opp. and opp. p. 121, to which reference should also be
made for their positions. (The appearance of the destroyed houses immediately E. of Monument (64) is
derived from a late 19th-century photograph.)
High East Street
b(26) House, No. 1, adjoining former Chapel (Monument 6)
on N. side, has a slated mansard roof and was built c. 1830–40.
The symmetrical front, in pale-coloured brickwork with rubbed
dressings, has a central round-headed doorway with a blind
recess above it. The windows have flat arched heads.
b(27) House, No. 3, of c. 1845, now includes a shop.
b(28) House with shop, No. 4, was built c. 1830–40. The
shop front is of the later 19th century.
b(29) House, No. 6 (plan p. 120), was built in the first half of
the 18th century; part of the front and the structure behind
have been destroyed to make way for a garage entrance. The
eaves cornice enriched with dentils and the widely proportioned
door-case, which has been reset, are of wood; the door-case has
fluted Ionic side pilasters and a pedimented entablature with
pulvinated frieze. The two windows remaining W. of the doorway and the range of six windows on the first floor have flat
brick heads with keystones. The plan appears to have comprised
a central entrance hall and staircase with one room to each side.
b(30) House, Nos. 7 and 7A, with modern shop, is of two
storeys and of rubble, rendered, with a tiled roof. It was built
in the 17th century.
b(31) House, No. 8, of brickwork in header bond, was of two
storeys when built in the 18th century. A third storey was
added and new windows were inserted in c. 1840–50.
b(32) House, with shop, No. 9, is of three storeys with attics
and the walls are faced with stucco. It was built early in the
19th century. The original shop front has two bow windows
with a doorway between them and the house door to the W.,
all with side pilasters and a continuous dentil cornice above.
b(33) Houses, a pair, Nos. 11 and 12, of two storeys and attics,
were built c. 1840–50.
b(34) House with shops, Nos. 17 and 18, has a rendered front
and is probably of 16th-century origin; it has been drastically
remodelled. The ground floor is occupied by modern shops. The
roof has four irregularly spaced trusses with principal rafters and
chamfered and cambered collar beams. There are two purlins
on each side, the lower one being placed low down near the
wall-plate; they are apparently tenoned into the principals and
the joints are pegged through.
b(35) House with shop, No. 20, of two storeys and attic, is of
the mid 19th century.
b(36) House with shop, Nos. 21–2, is an early 19th-century
building. Part of the ground floor of the street front is faced with
stucco and rusticated, the remainder is occupied by a modern
shop front. The first-floor windows have balconies with iron
balustrades. The parapet has been rebuilt.
b(37) House with shop, No. 24, faced with stucco is a building of c. 1840. The design was influenced by the Greek revival.
On the street front, the house door and the shop front are
flanked by Doric columns carrying an entablature, which is now
covered by a modern fascia; two columns flanking the shop
doorway have been replaced by iron supports. Over the entablature is cast-iron cresting. On the first floor are two wide
windows with tripartite sashes, side pilasters with incised-line
ornament, cornices and stepped and panelled blocking courses.
b(38) House with shop, No. 26, 10 yds. E. of Cornhill, has the
front faced with stucco probably on timber-framing and the
other walls of stone. The N. part of the building is of the 16th
century remodelled in the 19th century, and the S. part was added
probably in the first half of the 17th century; a large chimney-stack between the two has been removed and the whole ground
floor made into one room. The first floor was jettied on the
front. The top storey may be an addition. There are modern
additions on the S. Inside on the ground floor the earlier building retains an original open timber ceiling divided into four
panels by intersecting moulded ceiling beams; similarly a 17th-century timber ceiling survives in the later part, divided into six
panels by moulded beams of plainer section (plan p. 121).
b(39) House, No. 29, is of two storeys with cellars and was
partly timber-framed; it is probably of the second half of the
16th century, much altered. Inside is an original hollow-chamfered ceiling beam.
b(40) King's Arms Hotel (Plate 40) is of three storeys with
attics; the walls are of stone with brick dressings and the S.
front is faced with stucco; the roofs are tiled. It consists of a
long rectangular block parallel with the street; the front was
entirely remodelled in the 19th century and the interior has
been completely altered subsequently; there are modern additions on the N.
The main part of the front is symmetrical with a central entrance porch; to the W. is the entrance to a carriageway with
segmental arched head balanced at the E. end by an arched
recess containing a window; from end to end at the wall-head
is a cornice and fluted frieze. The open porch spans the pavement
with Roman-Doric columns and pilasters and an entablature
carrying later cast-iron railings; above on both first and second
floors are superimposed bow windows each consisting of five
double-hung sashes divided by fluted pilasters, the lower
supporting an entablature and the upper an architrave introduced
below the main frieze and cornice which are returned round the
bow, thus completing the crowning entablature.
b(41) Houses with shops, three, Nos. 31–33, stand at successively lower levels following the slope of the street. They are
mid 19th-century and retain much of the original shop fronts
with frieze and cornice carried on bold consoles; above they are
finished in the plainest manner, the roofs terminating with a
parapet and simple cornice (see D.C.C., 21 Sept. 1854).
b(42) Public House, No. 36, of two storeys with a slated roof,
is probably of the 17th century.
b(43) House, Nos. 39, 39B, has a rendered front and is possibly
of the 18th century, but it has been much altered.
b(44) House, No. 42, is of the early 19th century. The front is
symmetrical with a central doorway, which has a round head
formed of two rings of brickwork, flanked by two windows with
flat-arched heads. The three first-floor windows are similar to
those below and the eaves cornice is moulded.
b(45) House, No. 43, with tiled roof, was built in the 18th
century and has been greatly altered.
Houses in Dorchester
High West Street. Dorchester
b(46) House with shop, No. 45, is probably of the 17th century. The front is stuccoed and finished with a later parapet
between the gable ends; the back has a gable the full width of
b(47) House with shop, No. 46, retains the entablature for a
bowed shop-front of the early 19th century.
b(48) Terrace, Nos. 49–52, with walls of squared and coursed
local stone, was built c. 1795 on the site of the County Gaol
erected in 1784. The site was offered for sale in the Salisbury
Journal for 7 April 1794, and it was probably one of these houses
that was advertised for sale in the Salisbury Journal for 9 May
1796. The front has a timber cornice with an urn on the W.
end and plain segmental-headed windows; modern shopwindows have been inserted in two of the houses. No. 49 has a
front doorway with semicircular head, a wide ground-floor
window with segmental head and a balcony to the first floor
with delicate iron balustrade of Gothic design. No. 51 has a
semicircular door-head with a fanlight flanked by timber
pilasters behind a modern porch with reused 19th-century iron
High West Street
b(49) Judge Jeffreys' Lodging, No. 6 (Plate 94), has the
front wall of plastered timber-framing and the other walls of
stone; the roofs are covered with slates. It was built in the
first quarter of the 17th century. Judge Jeffreys is reputed to
have lodged here in 1685 during the Assize after the battle of
Sedgemoor. The ground floor has been partly reconstructed
and most of the partitions have been removed in modern times
The street front has a modern shop front in much altered and
restored 17th-century timber-framing and with two recessed
doorways, one, on the W., original with a stop-moulded frame,
and the other copied from it. On the first floor are two bay
windows with moulded wood frames, of six and eight transomed
lights respectively and with two lights on each return; between
them is a balcony with turned balusters brought from the old
Grammar School (see Monument 101). The jettied second floor
has two oriel windows each of four lights on the face and one
light on the splayed returns; the stone party wall on the W.
side of the house has moulded corbelling at this floor level. The
S. side and S. wing are built of stone and brick; the wing retains
original four and five-light stone-mullioned windows and single-light windows to the stair.
Inside, the ground floor has heavy exposed ceiling beams and
an original stone fireplace in the E. wall of the S. wing with
stop-moulded jambs and four-centred head with sunk spandrels;
another fireplace at the S. end has chamfered jambs and a
chamfered timber bressumer with a small stone niche above.
The upper floors retain a number of original stone fireplaces with
four-centred heads, and some of the doors are set in original
moulded openings in timber partitions. The two N. rooms on
the first floor are lined with early 17th-century panelling, in part
rearranged, divided into bays by reeded or fluted pilasters supporting enriched consoles, with moulded framing, horizontal
frieze-panels and dentil-cornices; the two overmantels are
generally similar and each is in three stages and of three bays
divided by fluted and reeded pilasters, with enriched arched
panels, consoles carved with strapwork and foliage and a dentilcornice.
b(50) House with shop, No. 7 (Plate 94), with walls of stone
and timber-framing, was built early in the 17th century; it
has been much restored in recent times and the S. wall has
been in part removed and the modern shop extended to the
S. (plan below).
17th-century Houses in Dorchester
The N. front has exposed timbering on the upper floor framing two rectangular oriel windows of six transomed lights on
the face and one on each return with ovolo-moulded wood
frames, mullions and transoms, partly restored. Inside, the
ground floor has exposed ceiling beams, and a room on the first
floor contains a fragment of the original enriched plaster
ceiling with a geometrical design of broad moulded ribs with
vine-scrolls in the soffits and part of the modelled plaster frieze.
Former Theatre in Trinity Street Dorchester
b(51) Houses, two, Nos. 8 and 9, were built at the same time
in the 18th century. The N. fronts contain 19th-century shop
windows on the ground floor; above, they are of vitrified brick
in header bond with red brick dressings.
b(52) House and Theatre, No. 10, front High West Street
and Trinity Street respectively. The house, of the mid 18th
century, has a back wing probably of the 19th century
joining it to a 17th-century building of which the S. part was
subsequently heightened, partly rebuilt and more than doubled
in size to form a theatre. The theatre opened in February
1828 (D.C.C., 11 Feb. 1828); it was designed by the proprietor
Mr. Charles Curme and remained open until 1843 (Peter
Davey's MS., Enthoven Collection, Victoria and Albert
Museum). Since then it has been used as a warehouse and all
the fittings have been removed leaving only the structural
framing which defined the various parts of the theatre.
(The 19th-century wing and the 17th-century building excepting
the S. half of the theatre demolished in 1965)
Towards High West Street, the House has a modern shop
front; the wall above is in glazed header-bond brickwork with
red dressings, and at the top is a frieze with grouped flutings,
a cornice with mutules and a parapet wall with projecting
brick panels spaced as the windows below.
The 17th-century building, of two storeys, has a rendered
W. wall containing two three-light stone-mullioned windows
with labels to each floor at the N. end and a similar first-floor
window of two lights at the S. end. The E. wall was rebuilt in
brick in the 18th century, with the re-use of three stone-mullioned
The Theatre (52 ft. inclusive by 27 ft.), which incorporates
the S. half of the 17th-century building, is gabled to N. and S.;
the S. front, which may have included the principal entrance,
has two round-headed doorways to E. and W., now altered,
three round-headed windows to the first floor and a lunette in
the gable. Inside, the stage is at the N. end with green room
and dressing rooms beneath. The stage, 24 ft. deep, slopes down
towards the auditorium and has a trap for footlights, which is
accessible from the green room. No other traps nor provisions
for supporting scenery remain. The E. wall of the stage is
almost entirely glazed, with weather-boarding above and below
The floor of the pit slopes downwards in the direction of the
stage, at a lower level. Around the pit the front of the main
seating area is marked by a horseshoe of eight timber posts
(one missing) with painted fluting in green, black and yellow.
These posts carry the front of the gallery and continue up to
meet the sloping gallery ceiling; at gallery level they are painted
green with a crude marbling under black and white paint. The
front of the gallery, of which the lowest member alone survives,
was painted to represent drapery. Nothing remains of any
proscenium opening, and the space under the pit has been so
much altered that the original access arrangements cannot be
b(53) House with shop, No. 15, of three storeys with attics,
was built c. 1800. The street front contains a 19th-century shop-front and, above, two original two-storey segmental bays
containing bow windows to each floor.
b(54) Old Ship Inn was built in c. 1600; it has been much
altered in modern times, and the only original features surviving
are two windows on the upper floor of the street front; these are
of four and five lights respectively with oak frames and mullions.
An original plaster overmantel and panelling have been removed
to the Dorset County Museum (see Monument 82).
b(55) Spinning Wheel, house with modern shop, No. 18,
is of 17th-century origin, much altered and modernised.
b(56) House with shop, No. 19, is probably of 17th-century
origin; it was refronted in red and black brickwork in the 18th
century and subsequently stripped and converted into a modern
shop. On the first floor of the street front are two three-sided
bay windows with dentil cornices built in 1784 (Mayo, Dorchester
Borough Records, 497); no doubt the new front dates from the
same year. A fragment of early 17th-century panelling is
incorporated in a modern staircase; some of the rooms are
reputed to have been lined with similar panelling.
b(57) Houses, a pair, Nos. 21–2, are of three storeys with
basement and attics and were built c. 1800. The doorways at
each end have round heads and stucco surrounds comprising
engaged Roman-Doric side columns with deep necking and a
plain entablature. Original iron rails guard the basement area.
b(58) House with shop, Nos. 23, 23A (Plate 94), is of three
storeys with cellars and attics; the front has stucco dressings.
The earliest part of the building is a brick wing behind the
W. part of the house, built probably at the end of the 17th
century (plan p. 120). The front range was completely rebuilt
in 1735, the date on the lead rainwater heads; it was then two
storeys high and the third storey was added c. 1820–30;
at the same time a short wing was added behind the E. part
of the house. The shop-fronts are modern.
The street front has a stuccoed central feature which is
rusticated on the ground floor and contains paired 19th-century
doorways with plain openings under a wide cornice; on the
first floor round-headed niches between Ionic pilasters flank
the central window.
The interior was largely refitted in the early 19th century but
retains the staircase of 1735 to the first floor; the upper part of
the staircase is a copy of the lower. The cellars have groined
brick vaults. The older back wing has been refitted but retains
an original segmental-headed fireplace.
b(59) House, No. 24, of the early 19th century, is built as a
continuation of Nos. 22, 23. The ground floor is stuccoed and
rusticated, with round-headed doorway and windows.
b(60) Houses, a pair, No. 28, 29, of three storeys with basement and attic were built towards the middle of the 19th century.
The fronts have the ground floor rendered in stucco and rusticated and the upper floors of painted brickwork with moulded
stucco cornice and plain blocking course. The basement areas are
enclosed by original iron railings; the first floor has tall hung-sash
windows opening to a balcony with elaborate cast-iron balustrade.
b(61) Houses, two, Nos. 30, 31, were built early in the 17th
century but have been refronted and stuccoed and the front
walls heightened to give a three-storey elevation. Modern
shop-fronts have been inserted. Each has a curved staircase of the
early 19th century in the entrance hall beside the shop. The
back wing of No. 30 has an original timber ceiling of intersecting beams now plastered over (plan p. 120).
b(62) Wessex Guest House, Nos. 32, 33, is stucco-fronted.
Originally of the 17th century, it was heightened, refronted and
extended in the mid 19th century. The interior has been remodelled but some original chamfered ceiling beams remain.
b(63) House and post office, No. 34, is stucco-fronted. It was
originally of two storeys and attics and was heightened to three
storeys in the late 19th century. The entrance doorway has a
pediment on shaped brackets, and further W. is a bow window,
semicircular on plan and of two storeys, added in the early 19th
b(64) House, Nos. 39–40 at W. end, is of two and three
storeys with cellars; the N. front is of rusticated Portland stone
ashlar on the ground floor and yellow brick above; the other
walls are faced with stucco. If an earlier house existed on the site
it was entirely remodelled internally and refronted in the second
quarter of the 19th century. The N. front has a flat stone string
at first-floor level and a stucco cornice and parapet; the entrance
doorways have round heads and fanlights. On the first floor is an
iron balcony with balustrading in the Gothic style; a second
balcony at the S. end had standards supporting a flared roof,
removed c. 1950. In the garden is a large well, built of squared and
coursed rubble, oval on plan.
b(65) House, No. 41 (Plate 94), faced with stucco, is of the
mid 19th century.
b(66) Savernake House, No. 42 (Plate 94), is of two storeys
with attics and cellars; the walls are of brick in header bond
with stone dressings and the roofs are tile-covered with stone
slates at the verges. It was built in the first half of the 18th
century, enlarged later in the same century and has a 19th-century wing on the N. (plan p. 120).
The street front has rusticated stone quoins and a timber
eaves cornice with dentils; the windows have moulded stone
architraves with keystones. The doorway, in the westernmost
of the three bays, has a round head and timber door-case with side
pilasters and console brackets supporting a cornice. The original
part of the plan comprises only the entrance hall and one front
room. The staircase has a lattice-work balustrade and clustered
lower newel, quatrefoil on plan.
b(67) Houses, with shops, two, Nos. 43, 44 (Plate 94), are of
stone faced with plaster. They were built probably early in the
17th century and much altered early in the 19th century,
when the doorways were altered and a bow shop-window was
inserted, and again more recently. No. 44 has been extended at
b(68) House, with garage, No. 45, is of brick with the street
front faced in ashlar. It was built in the mid 18th century as a
symmetrically designed house with its S. end to the street and
with the entrance in the middle of the main front to the E.
Later in the same century it was widened to the east and the S.
end refaced in stone. The whole of the ground-floor wall
of the S. front has been removed.
The end of the original house forms the main bay of the
present street front under a pediment; the addition forms a small
flanking bay. There is a continuous cornice over the first floor
thus architecturally defining the second floor as an attic storey.
There are original lead rainwater heads decorated with a
heron(?). The original entrance doorway, now internal, has an
enriched architrave and leads into a hall containing a staircase
with turned balusters.
b(69) House, No. 46, of two storeys rendered in stucco and
with tiled roof, is of the 18th century. (Demolished)
b(70) Houses, two, Nos. 48–9, are not a pair but are of the
same date in the second quarter of the 19th century; they have
yellow brick fronts.
b(71) Wadham House, No. 50, of three storeys with basements, was built as two tenements early in the 19th century
and is now divided into flats. The street front is faced with
stucco, rusticated on the ground floor. Inside, the original stair
has a wrought-iron scroll balustrade and wood handrail.
b(72) House with shop, No. 51, of three storeys and attics,
has the front faced with stucco. It was built late in the 18th
century and the shop front is modern. The original doorway has
a round head and fanlight, panelled reveals and a pediment
enriched with dentils supported on console brackets. Inside, the
stair has open strings, turned newels and plain square balusters.
b(73) House, No. 52, was built c. 1600 and completely remodelled in the first half of the 18th century when it was heightened
to three full storeys (plan below). Over the central doorway is a
flat timber hood carried on brackets carved with grotesque
masks. The windows have flat stone arches with keys and the
sills of the ground-floor windows have been lowered. As
remodelled in the 18th century the plan comprised two front
rooms of unequal size and a passageway to the yard behind at the
E. end. In this passageway is a blocked fireplace of c. 1600 with
moulded stone jambs. A staircase wing projects centrally at the
back and a 19th-century kitchen wing may replace an earlier
structure. The front ground-floor rooms are lined with 18th-century panelling. The fireplace in the larger E. room is a later
b(74) House, No. 53 (plan above), is of stone faced with stucco.
It was built in the late 16th century; two moulded ceiling beams
of that date remain, one probably reset. Towards the end of the
18th century the street front was entirely remodelled and
heightened; it has a stucco plinth and flat strings at ground, first
and second-floor sill levels, the upper two with fluting, a simple
cornice and parapet. The central doorway is under an open
porch with Roman-Doric columns and pilasters, with a deep
band of fluting under the caps, supporting an entablature with a
frieze enriched with fluting and oval medallions; the window
above, formerly a blind recess, has a segmental head; the other
windows are plain. In the N. wall is an original stone-mullioned
window, and a second has been reset in a 19th-century wing to
the N. The wing contains a dining room on the ground floor
and a ballroom above, the latter with a window of three lights,
the centre light arched, under a segmental head. Inside, the S.W.
room is lined with 18th-century ovolo-moulded and fielded
panelling with dado and cornice. The present staircase is of the
late 19th century. The ballroom has an original frieze and cornice.
b(75) House with shop, No. 54, is of the early 19th century.
The street front is faced with stucco and has flat strings at the
two upper floor levels. The original entrance doorway is flanked
by Doric half-columns supporting an entablature.
b(76) House with shop, No. 55, is of two storeys; the walls are
of stone faced with stucco. It was built in the 17th century; the
ground floor has been stripped for a modern shop and shop front.
The first floor retains two original three-light stone-mullioned
windows. Inside, the staircase is of the late 18th century, with
turned newels and plain square balusters (plan p. 121).
b(77) Houses, a pair, Nos. 56, 57, of 1849, are rendered in
stucco with rusticated ground floor, rusticated quoins and
moulded cornice with modillions. The upper windows have
moulded architraves, those on the first floor with cornices
above and opening to iron balconies. (Deed in D.C.R.O.)
b(78) House, No. 58, 'newly erected' in 1821, was bought for
the Judge's Lodging in 1828 (H. C. Cox, 'Dorset County
Council. The Development of its Activities', in D.C.R.O.). It
has a central round-headed doorway with two windows to
each side. The windows in the upper floors have their sills
linked to form continuous string courses.
b(79) House with shop, No. 62, was built c. 1800; parts of the
N. wing may be of slightly earlier date. The shop front is of the
mid 19th century; above, on the first floor, is an original bow
window of shallow projection.
b(80) Houses, Nos. 63 and 63B, face on Grey School Passage.
No. 63 is of the mid 18th century; the original plan, comprising
two rooms with a staircase between them, is preserved on the
first floor (plan p. 120); the ground floor has been converted to a
No. 63B was built at the beginning of the 17th century. The
back and end walls are of coursed stone rubble; the E. front was
timber-framed but has been rebuilt, on the ground floor in
rubble and on the first floor in brick leaving only a few of the
original timber studs, two of which are moulded where they
flanked a window. The N. gable has a parapet with shaped
kneelers and gabled saddle-stone. At the back are original stone-mullioned windows of two and four lights, their size being
related to the importance of the rooms they light. The plan comprises a central chimney-stack, flanked by the staircase and entrance lobby, between two rooms. The principal room to the S.
has a fireplace with moulded stone jambs and timber lintel. The
N. room had no fireplace. Corner fireplaces were added to the
two first-floor rooms c. 1700.
b(81) House with shop, No. 64, on the E. side of Holy Trinity
churchyard, has a long N. wing with a W. wall built of squared
and coursed local stone probably in the late 17th century
and with a subsequent heightening. The original windows have
been restored and altered to some extent; they are of three lights
with stone mullions.
b(82) Handel House, with shops, Nos. 65–6, adjoining the
Dorset County Museum, was built of stone late in the 16th
century and entirely refronted in brick in the 18th century; it
had a carriageway through from S. to N. Modern shop fronts
have been inserted and the whole of the original N. wall has
been removed. An extension of the museum is now housed on
the first floor and in additions on the N. Some original fittings
remain on the first floor, including a stone fireplace with chamfered flat four-centred head and part of a muntin and plank
partition with moulded door openings. Some reset 17th-century
panelling is from Tyneham House (Tyneham 2) and the Old
Ship Inn, High West Street (Monument 54). On the ground
floor of No. 65 is a niche with 18th-century decorative plasterwork.
Cornhill and South Street
Cornhill forms the N. part of South Street and is distinguished from the rest of the street by the greater width
resulting from its former use as a market place. In the middle
was a small market building, on the site of the present Town
Pump. The Market Hall and former Corn Exchange, built in
1784 on a site E. of St. Peter's Church, and their replacement
in 1848 by the Town Hall containing a new Corn Exchange
(Monument 10) preserved the continuity of this commercial
centre into the late 19th century. The houses on the E. side of
Cornhill, which were rebuilt or refaced in the late 18th and
early 19th centuries, though not particularly distinguished
individually, form a pleasingly urbane group, architectural
coherence resulting from their being all of three storeys and
mostly of red brick.
Cornhill, E. side:
b(83) Houses with shops, No. 1 Cornhill and No. 27 High
East Street, have rendered walls and are of uncertain date. They
were completely remodelled in the late 19th century.
b(84) House with shops, Nos. 2, 2A, is of the early 19th
century; the shop-fronts are modern.
b(85) House with shop, No. 3, has tiled roofs with stone slate
verges. The ground floor was remodelled c. 1830 and has the
shop doorway set between projecting display windows and the
house doorway to one side, all under a frieze and cornice and
flanked by reeded columns. The openings are grouped off centre,
and at the S. end stonework of an earlier gable wall is exposed
in the ground storey.
b(86) Houses with shops, Nos. 4, 5, a pair, of three storeys with
attics, were built c. 1820–30.
b(87) House with shop, No. 6, was built probably a few years
before the foregoing. It retains original rainwater heads.
b(88) House with shop, No. 7, has a tiled roof with stone slate
b(89) House with shop, No. 8, was built probably in the 17th
century and refronted in the late 18th century. Rainwater
heads are of the latter date.
b(90) House with shops, Nos. 9 and 9A, 5 yds. N. of Durngate
Street, has a local stone ashlar front. It was built in the mid
19th century. The shop-fronts are modern; above them are
four windows with moulded stone architraves; the second-floor
windows are plain. There is a plain band joining the sills of the
second-floor windows, a cornice and parapet. The main staircase
is oval on plan, with plain square balusters; it begins at the first
b(91) House with shop, No. 10, is early Victorian.
Cornhill, W. side:
b(92) House with modern shop, No. 13, was built c. 1740. The
E. front is built of vitrified brick in header bond with red brick
and stone dressings and has a flat string at first-floor sill level,
a curtailed modillion-cornice and a parapet wall. The ranges of
four windows on each floor have moulded stone architraves with
stepped keystones and the upper range has shaped brackets under
the sills. The plan is similar to that of (74). (Largely rebuilt)
b(93) Antelope Hotel is of two and three storeys (Plate 98);
the walls are of coursed local stone and brick with some
stucco and the roofs are slate-covered. It is built round four
sides of an open yard with a carriageway through from E. to
W.; the S. and W. ranges comprise an L-shaped building of the
late 16th or early 17th century but the S. range has been much
altered and heightened subsequently. The other two ranges are
mainly of the 19th century.
The design of the street front is notably individualistic.
The W. range has a moulded stone string at first-floor level
and the walls above and the first floor of the S. range are faced
with brick; the stone S. gable-end of the W. range is a subsequent
rebuilding and has a stone string across the base and a shaped W.
kneeler. The windows in the external walls, excepting two of the
18th century on the first floor of the W. range, are original and of
two and three lights with stone mullions. The 19th-century
street front is divided into three bays by stucco pilaster-strips
on rusticated pedestals with a crowning frieze, cornice and
parapet of the same material breaking forward over the pilasters;
in the middle bay is a rectangular opening to the carriageway,
hung with original lattice-work gates of wood and iron, and a
window on each floor above; in the full width of each side bay
is a segmental projection two storeys in height containing windows on each floor. A balcony with wrought-iron balustrade
returns across the whole front at first-floor level; the windows
opening on it are lofty and fitted with french casements. All the
windows have plain rectangular openings excepting those above
the bays; both these, lighting the top floor, are semicircular
lunettes fitted with casements.
The interior of the first floor of the W. range, originally all
one room but now divided, retains the following original fittings.
Panelling in two rooms, partly rearranged to fit round the 18th-century windows, has moulded framing, an enriched frieze
and moulded cornice and is divided into bays by pilasters. The
S. fireplace has a four-centred head and moulded stone reveals
in a timber surround comprising flanking columns supporting
an enriched cornice-shelf and an overmantel divided into bays
by coupled columns supporting an entablature with arabesque
enrichment on the frieze, the bays containing blind semicircular
arches springing from small turned columns and with enriched
archivolts and jewelled spandrels. The N. fireplace has moulded
stone reveals with plain stops and a flat four-centred head with
sunk spandrels; the timber surround has coupled side columns on
pedestals supporting a moulded cornice-shelf and an overmantel
generally similar in arrangement to that just described, with
pendants at the apex of the arches and a deep entablature with
foliated consoles, carving on the frieze and shaped dentils.
An Outbuilding and a Barn to the N.W. and W. respectively
are both probably of the early 17th century. The original walls
are of stone. The former has a roof with raised jointed-cruck
trusses, each with a collar beam. The roof of the latter, of six
bays, is of similar construction.
South Street, E. side:
b(94) Houses with modern shops, Nos. 1–3, incorporate the
entrance and passageway to Greyhound Yard. They were built
in the 16th or 17th century and have been almost completely
modernised; the W. fronts have been rebuilt. In the N. end is an
original square-headed window, now blocked. A wing at the
back of No. 1 was found, during demolition, to contain a 17th-century jointed cruck and a chamfered stone fireplace of the
The entrance into Greyhound Yard has been rebuilt 3 ft.
E. of the original position; it consists of an early 16th-century
stone archway with continuous moulded jambs and four-centred head with large spandrels carved with spiralled foliage;
one of the jambs is modern and both are rebated. The passageway
has at the head of the S. wall an exposed stop-chamfered wall-plate supported by a 16th-century stone corbel.
(House demolished, archway removed to car park 50 yds. E.)
b(95) Houses, three, with modern shops, Nos. 7–9, all have the
street front built of vitrified brick in header bond with red brick
dressings. No. 8 has an original doorway with pedimented hood
on console brackets. No. 9 has brick aprons below the windows
and a modern parapet.
b(96) Bank, No. 10 (Plate 129), is of three storeys; the walls
are of vitrified bricks in header bond with red brick dressings.
It was built in the last quarter of the 18th century; the interior
has been altered and modernised.
The elegant front sets back behind the present building line;
it has a plinth with chamfered stone weathering, a simple cornice
with fluting and round sinkings in the frieze and a cementrendered parapet wall. It is in three bays. The timber door-case
in the middle has a continuous fluted architrave round the doorway and semicircular fanlight, with flanking console-brackets
supporting entablature blocks to an open pediment with dentil
cornice framing a reeded oval medallion and draped garlands
of foliage; the whole is of much refinement. The ground-floor
windows and the middle window on the first floor have round
heads with stone keys and plain impost blocks; the five other
windows have flat gauged-brick heads with stone keys. The
curb stones for the front railings remain but the ironwork has
been removed. Inside, the principal rooms have moulded plaster
cornices and an upper room retains an original iron firegrate.
b(97) House, No. 11, was built in the early 19th century and
enlarged about the middle of the same century. (Demolished)
b(98) Houses, Nos. 15, 16, a pair, are of c. 1820–30. They are
built in a distinctive pale orange-coloured brick laid in Flemish
bond with dressings of a dark red brick and have an eaves
cornice at the wall-head. The doorways, at opposite ends of the
two houses, have semicircular heads of two rings of brickwork.
b(99) Archway, reset in the S. wall of No. 17, was brought
from a building the remains of which stand in Colliton Street
(Monument 112); it is two-centred and has a continuous roll-moulding in the head and jambs; early 14th-century.
b(100) House with modern shops, No. 18, has on the street
front a stone tablet inscribed W.M.I. 1657; weatherings in the
gable-end chimneys suggest that the building was heightened
at this date. The roof is carried on scarfed upper-cruck trusses.
Thorough remodelling in modern times includes the further
heightening of the front wall.
b(101) Offices, mostly of the late 19th century, stand on the
site of the old Hardye's Grammar School which was endowed
in 1569, partly rebuilt c. 1618 and again in 1824 (Hutchins II,
367). Some fragments of the school buildings remain: reset in the
W. front is a 17th-century stone oriel window of three lights
with hollow-chamfered mullions and canted side lights; the two
lower storeys of the N. wall are of old rubble masonry and
contain mullioned windows which have been heightened; see
also Monument (49).
At the modern Hardye's Grammar School, S. of the town,
reset over the gymnasium doorway, is a worn stone panel of
Tudor Royal Arms, presumably from the old school. The Screen
in the Library is also from the old school, and probably of the
early 17th century. It is of oak, in two stages, and divided into
five bays. In the lower stage the bays are divided by columns on
pedestal bases standing free in front of pilasters and carrying an
enriched entablature; between the pilasters is moulded panelling
with round-headed doorways in the second and fourth bays. The
upper stage may have been a gallery front and is divided into
five bays by pilasters enriched with strapwork and with arcaded
and rectangular panels between and an enriched cornice above.
b(102) House with modern shop, No. 21, of two storeys with
mansard attics, was built towards the end of the 18th century.
The three first-floor windows have heads with cambered soffits.
b(103) House with modern shop, No. 22, is similar to the
foregoing but has two segmental-headed windows on the first
floor and a serrated brick eaves cornice.
b(104) Wall, at the S. end of No. 23, bounding a passage to
Charles Street, is of coursed flint and rubble and was part of a
house built in the late 16th or early 17th century.
b(105) House with modern shops, No. 26, was built c. 1830–40.
South Street, W. side:
b(106) Houses with shops, range of four, Nos. 37–40, are of
three storeys and attics, with fronts of Broadmayne brick; the
other walls are rubble. They are not shown on the MS map of
c. 1832 (D.C.M.) but were built before 1847, when William
Barnes went to live in No. 40. Thomas Hardy worked at
No. 39 in 1856–62 as pupil to John Hicks, architect.
b(107) House with shops, No. 41, of brick with plat-band at
second-floor level, moulded cornice and parapet, is of the late
18th century; it is built as a double pile. The ground-floor shops
Monuments (108–138) in the minor streets of the town are
mostly of a more humble character than those in the main
streets. Unless otherwise described they are of two storeys only,
with brick walls and tiled or slated roofs.
Hutchins' map of 1771 shows this as 'Bowling Green Lane',
but the map of c. 1832 shows the latter name restricted to the
portion running E. to join Acland Road; the rest is simply
'Back Lane'. The name Charles Street was at first applied to
the section alongside Wollaston House when the latter was
built in 1786 (Minutes of Council Meeting 14 Aug. 1786).
The E. side was not built up until the late 19th century; on
the W. side only a few buildings of the first half of the century
Church Street joins Durngate Street to High East Street
immediately E. of All Saints' church. Hutchins' map shows it
fully built up and containing Whetstone's Almshouses, which
were later rebuilt in West Walks.
b(108) Houses, three, Nos. 5, 6, 7, have rubble and stuccoed
walls and are of the early 19th century.
b(109) House, No. 8, of rubble, is probably of the 17th century
but retains no original features except a four-centred door-head,
Called 'Pease Lane' in the 19th century, this street was then
more extensively built up than it is now. Development culminated about the middle of the century with the building of
at least three courts of small tenements at right angles to the
street; most of these have now been demolished, but a
number of small early 19th-century houses remain in the street
b(110) Houses, Nos. 20, 22, were built in the first half of the
18th century but have been much altered; both originally had
symmetrical fronts with central doorways. Above the doorway
to No. 22 is a small panel bearing a defaced inscription of initials
and date, perhaps 1726.
b(111) House, No. 45, of the early 18th century, has a symmetrical front with plat-band at first-floor level and later hungsash windows.
b(112) Storehouse, on the S. side of Colliton Street 100 yds.
N.W. of the church of St. Peter and formerly the rectory, has
walls of stone. The N. and part of the S. walls and a fragment
at the base of the N. wall of the house immediately to the W.
are old and probably mediaeval. When modern doorways
were inserted in the S. wall of the store a mediaeval archway
with roll-moulded two-centred head and jambs was removed
and reset in No. 17 South Street (Monument 99).
Durngate Street, parallel with High East Street, is shown in
Hutchins' map of 1771 as being almost completely built up on
both sides. Part of the S. side was cleared in 1786 for the
building of Wollaston House (Monument 24). There are some
ten small houses of the 18th and early 19th centuries as well as
the following earlier buildings.
b(113) House, now a store, is of rubble with a tiled roof. It
was built in the early 17th century on an L-shaped plan and
perhaps formed part of Lady Abingdon's Lodging; in the early
18th century it was remodelled, and since then the back wing has
b(114) House, No. 4, of rubble, rendered, was built in the
17th century; it is much altered but some original ceiling beams
Friary Lane, running N. from High East Street, contains a
dozen small houses of the first half of the 19th century.
b(115) 'King's Arms Tap', public house, of two storeys with
tiled roofs, was built in the early 19th century and may originally
have been a stable building.
Glyde Path Hill and Glyde Path Road
From N. to S. these roads were formerly called 'Glyde Path
Hill', 'Colliton Road' and 'Shire Hall Lane'. They contain,
among other small 18th-century houses, the following:
b(116) House, No. 8 Glyde Path Hill, built as two dwellings,
is of two storeys and attics and of brick with roofs of tile with
stone-slated verges. The date of erection is indicated by a
terracotta panel at the front inscribed JEN 1713.
b(117) House, No. 32 Glyde Path Road, formerly the 'Mason's
Arms', may be of the late 17th or early 18th century. The front
has a nearly central doorway flanked by two small windows, all
of which have inserted flat-arched heads with keystones. The
plan appears to have comprised two rooms, each with a fireplace
in the gable wall, with two opposed doorways at front and back
giving access to the larger room.
b(118–119) Houses, Nos. 34 and 35 Glyde Path Road, present
an architectural contrast. No. 34, of about the middle of the
18th century, is built in header-bond brickwork and has a
very crowded elevation: a central doorway flanked by two
windows, and three first-floor windows, all with segmental
heads and keystones. No. 35 is a slightly earlier building, in
Flemish-bond brickwork with a plat-band; its front has only
two first-floor windows and shows a wide expanse of plain
This road, running S. from High East Street, formerly
called 'Gallows Hill' or 'Bell Street' and, at the N. end, 'Old
Gaol Lane', has few buildings prior to 1850. There are a few
early Victorian cottages and the following:
b(120) Houses, Nos. 47, 48, 50, have rubble walls and are
probably of the late 18th century. No. 50 was built as two houses
and has been extensively modernised.
North Square, formerly Bull Stake, formed part of the old
market area. It comprises a street, running N. and S. next E.
of St. Peter's church, which broadens out near the middle. The
predecessor of the Victorian Corn Exchange extended over a
covered passage which formed the S. end of the street. The
business importance of North Square in the early 19th century
is reflected in the building of several houses of three storeys.
b(121) Houses, range of three, Nos. 3–5, of two storeys with
cellars and attics and of rubble with brick fronts, have tiled
mansard roofs; No. 5 is dated by a stone inscribed B.H. 1822.
Nos. 3 and 4, though structurally separate, were built at the
same time; No. 3 has an original bow-fronted shop window.
b(122) Houses, a pair, Nos. 17 and 18, of three storeys, are
of rubble with brick fronts and have slated roofs. They are of
c. 1830–40. The fronts are in a pale Broadmayne brick with red
gauged brick heads to the openings.
b(123) House, No. 19, and the 'Dorchester Arms', public
house, of three storeys with cellars, are similar to the foregoing
but have the ground floor stuccoed and rusticated and have a
moulded eaves cornice.
b(124) House, No. 21, now municipal offices, is of three
storeys and of brick with a stuccoed front; it was built in the
early 19th century. The doorway is set to one side and, with a
semicircular fanlight, is framed by slender columns supporting a
cornice; the windows are plain, but those on the first floor are
set within a shallow blind arcade of three round arches springing
from pilasters with moulded caps, rising from a plat-band at
The origin of this street as a service road behind High West
Street is evident both from its earlier name of 'West Back
Street' and its preponderance of 19th-century buildings. This
very secondary character was changed by the extension of
Trinity Street to High West Street in the middle of the 19th
century, followed by the building of Alington Street. Earlier
the footways through the inn yards of the Antelope (to Cornhill) and the Royal Oak (to High West Street) were of considerable importance.
b(125) House, No. 4, is of two storeys and of rubble with a
brick front and was built early in the 18th century. The ground-floor windows and doorway have three-centred heads and a
brick band marks the first floor. Inside are some remains of stud-and-panel partitions. (Demolished)
b(126) Houses, a pair, Nos. 13 and 14, are of rubble with brick
fronts, and have mansard roofs. Built about the middle of the
19th century, they have unusually pretentious fronts for such
small houses in a minor street. Each house has a doorway and one
window on the ground floor and two first-floor windows. This
simple scheme is enlivened by setting back the wall surface of
both houses to form two large adjacent segmental-headed recesses,
each enclosing one ground and one first-floor window. All the
openings have moulded stone architraves and the front is
crowned by a moulded cornice and plain parapet with dies.
b(127) House, No. 17, of rubble with rough-cast front, was
built in the second half of the 18th century.
Salisbury Street follows the line of part of the Roman
defences on the E. side of the town.
b(128) House, No. 7, of rubble with modern brick dressings,
has been drastically remodelled but is probably of 17th or early
b(129) House with shop, No. 10, of rubble with brick dressings, was built c. 1800. In the middle of the front is an original
shop window, under a moulded cornice, between the doorway
and a smaller window. On the first floor are two windows
flanking a blind recess.
b(130) Cottages, five, Nos. 11–15, form a small terrace at
right angles to the street; they were built c. 1820–30.
b(131) Salisbury Terrace, seven houses, at the S. end of the
street, is of the mid 19th century; it is built of rubble at the back
with Broadmayne brick in the exposed W. and S. elevations; the
dressings are of stone and the roofs are covered with slate with
overhanging boarded eaves. The middle and end houses project
slightly and are further emphasised by having hoods carried on
brackets above the ground-floor windows and also two first-floor windows each of two round-headed lights. The ground-floor openings and all those in the other four houses have segmental heads with keystones. In the S. gable wall is a panel
inscribed with the initials J. G. and a date that may be 1850.
b(132) Houses, a pair, behind the foregoing and facing Salisbury Field, are of three storeys and built of rubble with a brick
front. They are of the mid 19th century. The front has the ground
floor faced with brown Broadmayne brick and the upper part
with red brick, with a plat-band between, a moulded cornice
and a parapet; it is symmetrically arranged, with two wide
bays of shallow projection with quoins of yellow brick; the
doorways and windows have plain stone architraves.
Formerly called 'South Back Street', this street originally
stopped at the N. end at the junction with Prince's Street
(q.v.), with no way through to High West Street. As a back
street it must have served the stables and coach-houses of South
Street, but No. 3 is a well-preserved house of some distinction.
The W. side of the street has a dozen small houses of c. 1830–50.
b(133) House, No. 3 (Plate 94; plan, p. 120), of two storeys
with attics and basement, is of brick in Flemish bond with
slated roofs. It was built probably in the first quarter of the
18th century, and the upper part of the front was rebuilt
towards the end of that century. It has been restored subsequently and there are modern additions on the N.
The street front is symmetrical, of five bays, with a curtailed
brick string at first-floor level, a cornice of c. 1780 with fluting
in the frieze grouped to resemble triglyphs and a parapet wall.
The central doorway has a stone architrave, pulvinated frieze
and console brackets supporting a curved pediment; the windows
have flat gauged brick heads, the upper rebuilt. The N. and S.
ends are gabled, and the E. front has a brick string and parapet,
ranges of five windows on each floor and old lead rainwater
pipes with round heads.
Inside, the fittings are mostly of the 18th century; the ground-floor rooms are lined with ovolo-moulded and fielded panelling
with moulded dado-rail and cornice; one fireplace surround has
an enriched architrave and frieze and a panelled overmantel
flanked by swags. The original staircase has turned and fluted
or twisted balusters, three to a tread, and turned and fluted
newels. The upper rooms are panelled as on the floor below but
without fielding and the fireplaces are original and of stone.
b(134) Grove Cottage, a small house with a tiled mansard
roof, was built in the early 19th century. The street front has a
round-headed doorway with a bow window of three lights
above, forming a central axis and flanked by four blind windowrecesses.
West Walks Road
Apart from a small range of 18th-century cottages, this road
is a shortly pre-Victorian development. The houses to the N.
reflect a changing social outlook among more prosperous
tradesmen which resulted in the separation of town houses
from business premises and indeed their siting away from those
parts of the town where business was carried on. The first
five of these houses (Monument 135) appear on the MS. map
of c. 1832 (in D.C.R.O.) but their style indicates that they can
have been built only a few years previously.
b(135) Houses, in three blocks, respectively Nos. 1, 2–3 and
4–5, are of three storeys and have walls rendered with stucco,
probably over brick, and slated roofs. The W. front of each
block has the two lower storeys of each house framed by pilasters
which rise to an architrave at second-floor level; on the third
storey panelled pilaster-strips stand above the pilasters. The
roofs are of low pitch, with boarded soffits and paired brackets
to the eaves.
b(136) Cottage, No. 6, of two storeys and of coursed squared
rubble with slated roof, has details in the Gothic style and a
keystone inscribed HB 1851.
b(137) Cottages, range of four, Nos. 8–11, of two storeys, are
of rubble with brick dressings and brick fronts to West Walks
Road. They were built in the early 19th century and are connected with Whetstone's Charity. Whetstone's Almshouses were
later rebuilt just S. of these cottages.
b(138) House, now divided into four tenements, Nos. 12–15,
has a small terracotta tablet on the S. side bearing the date 1705
and also a later illegible inscribed stone.
The parish church of St. George, Fordington, is
described above (see Monument 4), so too are the
Baptist Chapel, Damer's Hospital and the two Schools
(Monuments 6, 18, 21, 22).
Fordington House, S. of the village, the largest house
in the old parish, has been much altered. Two other large
houses are known to have stood in Fordington, one
being a mansion belonging to the Churchill family
(Hutchins II, 792); both have been demolished, and there
are now not more than half a dozen houses and barns of
a date much before 1800. In 1795 William Morton Pitt
established a 'spinning school and weaving and bleaching' in the parish to promote industry among the
numerous poor (Hutchins II, 792), and most of the
development in the village has comprised small industrial dwellings. The buildings along the E. parts of Mill
Street and Holloway Road, N. of the High Street, consisted largely of early 19th-century housing; they have
been demolished. A Rate Book of 1836 (D.C.R.O.)
lists 32 houses in Mill Street. No. 9 was dated 'W.G.A.
1822' and a terrace of ten dwellings N. of Mill Street
was dated 'I.G. 1840'. At the W. end of Fordington
High Street is a group of early 19th-century houses
and industrial buildings, and other houses survive from
early 19th-century development between Fordington
Green and Fordington Cross and to the S. of Fordington
Cross in King Street and Alington Street (formerly
Upper Fordington comprises The Grove (158–62) and
buildings around West Mills. A new church was built
in this area in 1843 (Hutchins II, 800), but it has since
been pulled down.
The houses and industrial buildings in Fordington
are generally of little consequence; the best of them and
the older buildings are listed below. The houses are
generally of two storeys, but in The Grove in Upper
Fordington some are built on narrow plots and of
three storeys, indicating the confined space that was
available for building before the enclosure of the open
fields. Rubble walling predominates in the early 19th-century constructions, but there was an increasing use of
brick towards the middle of the century. Roofs are
mostly covered with slates.
c(139) Fordington House, some 330 yds. S. of St.
George's church, of two storeys and attics, is of brick
partly stuccoed and has slate-covered roofs. The house
was built in the second half of the 18th century, and a
substantial W. wing was added to it in the early 19th
century. The original house has been much altered, having had a modern pedimented feature added to the
S. front and a modern portico to the N.; the interior has
been remodelled to form flats.
The N. front is of brick laid in header bond and in five bays
with a central doorway and plain sash windows; the doorway
has a moulded architrave and side brackets carrying a pedimental hood. The eaves cornice is modern. The S. front is rendered
and has a modern eaves cornice and pediment. The W. wing,
rendered in stucco, has a symmetrical W. elevation in five
bays with plain sash windows; before it is a verandah with
trellis standards linked to form an arcade and a curved roof.
Inside the wing are early 19th-century ceiling cornices and
doorways in the hall with reeded architraves with lions'
masks on square panels at the angles.
The grounds are enclosed by rubble walls containing a main
entrance from Icen Way to the N. with ashlar gate piers surmounted by ball finials and with curved brick wing walls.
A Stable building in Athelstan Road to the S.E. may have been
connected with Fordington House. It is of two storeys, of
rubble with brick dressings and probably of the early 19th
High Street, Fordington
b(140) House, No. 16, of the early 19th century, has a
symmetrical brick front with a round-headed doorway.
b(141) Old Vicarage House, four tenements, with walls of
squared and coursed rubble and brick faced with stucco, is of the
18th and 19th centuries; it is L-shaped on plan. Reset in the N.E.
front is an early 15th-century two-light transomed window with
trefoiled openings and vertical tracery in a two-centred head.
This was removed from the N. wall of the nave of St. George's
Church, Fordington, when the N. aisle was added in 1833
(Dorset Procs. xxx (1909), 167 and sketch opp. 166).
b(142) House, No. 64, is probably of the 18th century. The
front is stuccoed and has modern casement windows.
b(143) Dunloe House, No. 70 (Plate 94; plan p. 120), of
three storeys, has a front block mainly of rubble but with a
brick front and a back wing which is partly faced with
mathematical tiling. It was built c. 1800 but an extension at the
back includes a length of older cob walling.
The street front is symmetrical, with a plinth and plain guttered eaves; rising from a central open rectangular porch is a
semicircular projecting two-storey bay containing bow windows
to the first and second floors; the flanking walls each contain on
each floor a window of wide proportions with a gauged brick
cambered head. The porch has thin cast-iron columns and
pilasters of normal width supporting a flattened entablature with
a widely projecting cornice; the entrance doorway with fanlight
has an elliptical-headed brick arch of two continuous plain orders.
The bow windows each comprise three double-hung sashes
divided by panelled pilasters under full entablatures. The house
contains original fittings, including fireplace surrounds and
flanking cupboards, moulded and fluted architraves with paterae,
and a staircase with bracketed strings and plain square balusters.
b(144) House, No. 63, has walls of stone faced with pebble
dash and some of brick; the roofs are slate-covered. The
N.W. half was built in the 17th century. The S.E. half may be
of the same date but has been completely remodelled; it
includes a through passage behind the chimney-stack.
The street front has a two-storey projecting bay with original
stone-mullioned windows on the two floors, with three lights
on the face and one on each canted side; further N.W. is a
modern window under an original label on the ground floor and
an original four-light window above. The N.E. and S.E. walls
have been in part rebuilt. Inside, there is an exposed ovolo-moulded ceiling beam and an original muntin and plank partition. Outbuildings include a thatched Barn of the 17th century
with stone sleeper-walls with cob above. It is of six bays, with
N. and S. porches; the collar-beam roof has the principal rafters
supported by recessed wall-posts with shaped heads standing on
the stone sleeper-walls.
b(145) House, No. 82, 100 yds. S.S.E. of the church, of rough
rubble, has a stone between the upper windows roughly inscribed
H.I. 1803 R.T.P.
b(146) House, No. 86, 4 yds. S.E. of No. 82, is of the 18th
century. The front is of rubble with brick arched window heads;
the back is of cob. A central passage is separated from a room on
each side by muntin and plank partitions.
b(147) Houses, Nos. 88 and 90, immediately S.E. of the foregoing, are double-fronted and of the mid and early 19th century
b(148) House, No. 10 The Green, is of brick and has roofs of
slate with a stone verge-course. The symmetrical front has a
round-headed doorway flanked by two windows with flat-arched heads, and three similar first-floor windows, all the
openings having heads of rubbed brick.
b(149) East Mills, 130 yds. E.N.E. of St. George's church,
was converted into flats in recent years with the destruction or
concealment of all original features except a 16th-century carved
panel, which was reset high up in the S. wall when the mill
was built in the late 18th century. Within the moulded frame
of the panel is a cable-moulded recess in which is a seated
figure holding a shield; above the figure is the inscription
W C 1590, and the shield itself was formerly inscribed 'Do Well
to Al Men' (Hutchins II, 798). No doubt the panel was originally
set on the house of the Churchill family at Fordington (ibid.,
792), long since demolished.
b(150) House, No. 2 Pound Lane, is of brick, rendered, and
with a hipped slated roof of shallow pitch. The front is divided
into three shallow panels with plain four-centred arched heads;
each end wall has two similar panels. The doorway in the middle
bay has a shallow porch and above it on the first floor a blind
recess painted to resemble a window. Each of the flanking bays
contains a window on each floor.
d(151) House, 400 yds. S.E. of the church at the corner of St.
George's Road and Ackerman's Road, is of one storey and attics
and with rubble walls and a thatched roof. It was built in the
early 17th century. The plan (p. 130) comprises a hall at the W.
end with a large fireplace backing on a through passage and a
second room which has exposed moulded ceiling joists.
b(152) House, No. 21 Kings Road, 280 yds. S. by E. of the
church, of two storeys and of rubble with a tiled roof, was built
probably in the late 17th or early 18th century. The W. front is
rendered; it has a central doorway above which is a two-light
window; widely spaced to each side on each floor is a window of
three lights; all the windows have hollow-chamfered mullions.
d(153) Barn, on S. side of Little Britain, 260 yds. E.S.E. of the
church, of coursed rubble, is roofed with thatch now covered
with corrugated iron. It was built probably in the 17th century;
a back part was added on the N.W. side in the late 18th century,
and considerable alterations have been made later. Fragments of
scarfed-cruck roof trusses remain. It may have been associated
with the house of the Churchill family that formerly stood 'in
the part of Fordington called Britain' (Hutchins II, 792).
d(154) Loud's Mill (708903) comprises a late 18th-century
building of four storeys, an early 19th-century building of three
storeys and lower buildings, one of which housed the millwheel; all are now converted to other uses.
The following Monuments (155–65) stand S. and W. of
the old town of Dorchester.
b(155) Junction Hotel, Great Western Road, has stuccoed
walls and slated roof. It was built in the late 18th century and has
been much enlarged. The original S. front has the openings
symmetrically arranged but set off centre; the doorway, with a
hood carried on shaped brackets, is flanked by large windows
with hung sashes in three lights of unequal widths; above are
three smaller hung-sash windows and a plain parapet.
b(156) House, No. 33 Great Western Road, was built in the
second quarter of the 19th century; the lower part has been
gutted and enlarged to form a shop. The walls are stuccoed and
the roof is slated and low pitched; the N. and S. fronts are each
divided into three bays, the middle bays being slightly recessed
and the wide outer bays flanked by pilasters. The plan appears
to have comprised a spacious entrance hall and staircase in the
middle and two rooms to each side, with a secondary staircase.
b(157) Top o' Town House, on N. side of St. Martin's
Road and facing the end of High West Street, was built
c. 1835–40 and subsequently extended on the N. and W. It is of
two storeys and attics, of brickwork, rendered, and has
slated hipped roofs.
The E. front is symmetrical, in five bays, with a plinth, a
plat-band that forms a continuous sill to the first-floor windows,
a moulded cornice and a parapet. The central doorway has an
elliptical head and attached Roman-Doric columns with entablature-blocks supporting a cornice projecting as a hood; the
two flanking windows on each side are plain and the range of
five tall windows on the first floor is fitted with cast-iron
window-guards of trelliswork design. All the double-hung
sashes have very thin glazing bars. The plan of the ground
floor comprises four rooms of equal size, with a wide entrance
hall and a staircase in the middle. The S.E. room has a fireplace
with marble surround, the jambs having fluted shafts with
paterae at the top. At the wall-head is a moulded ceiling cornice
with an acanthus frieze. The N.W. room has a fluted cornice and
plainer marble fireplace. The entrance hall is spanned by a
three-centred archway forming a lobby at the front, and the
staircase has a simply-moulded mahogany rail with balusters of
b(158) Cottages, range of five, of two storeys, are of rubble
with brick dressings and thatched roofs; they were built in the
second half of the 18th century. (Demolished)
b(159) Castle Inn and Houses, Nos. 19–26, are all of two
storeys with attics under slated roofs of low pitch and are of the
early 19th century.
b(160) Houses, nine, Nos. 30–38, are of three storeys with
rendered fronts and slated roofs; they were built in the second
quarter of the 19th century. Nos. 30, 31 have shop windows; the
remains of painted signs show that other houses have also been
used for commercial purposes. (Nos. 35–8 demolished)
b(161) Houses, range of eight, Nos. 39–46, are of two storeys
and attics and were built in pairs, stepped down the slope,
c. 1830–40. They have rendered fronts and are generally similar
to the preceding buildings except that a mansard roof takes the
place of the top storey.
b(162) House, W. of The Grove (687909), formerly the
Parsonage of Christ Church (built 1848 and now demolished), is
of two storeys and attics and of brick with a slated mansard roof.
It comprises a main range and a gabled wing; a porch and bay
window are later additions. The front of the main range was
originally symmetrical and in the simple late Georgian style.
b(163) Cottages, range of four, Nos. 1–4, are of two storeys,
of cob with thatched roofs, and were built c. 1820–40.
b(164) House, on N. side, of two storeys and of brick with a
thatched roof, was built in the early 19th century. It has a
symmetrical front with central doorway flanked by two windows,
and is the only house of any architectural pretension near the
mill (Monument 165). A cottage, of brick with a slated roof, was
added after 1854.
b(165) West Mill (687910), of two storeys, of brick above a
stone plinth and with a slated roof, is of the early 19th century
and now stripped of all its machinery. It is a plain rectangular
building with segmental-headed doorways and windows. Towards the N. end of the W. elevation two low segmental arches
indicate the entry of the mill-race, which has been filled in.
Further E. in the same wall are the remains of a small sluice.
(See Rex Wailes, 'Dorset Water Mills' in Newcomen Society
Transactions xxxv (1962–3), 194 and 209; the sluice gates therein
illustrated have been removed.)
Mediaeval and Later Earthworks
a(166) Strip Lynchet (68968890), a scarp of contour type
survives immediately S.W. of the Hospital among vestigial
remains of other strip fields of Fordington. This formerly
divided Thornton Hanging Furlong and Cory Pit Furlong
(Fordington Tithe Map (1844); R.A.F. V.A.P. CPE/UK 1934:
a(167) Ridge-and-furrow (690902) in Fair Field covers 2
acres; broad ridges about 11 yds. wide and up to 1 ft. high
run N. to S. These are now used for lines of pens during fairs
but were part of Beggars Knap Furlong (arable) in 1844
(Fordington Tithe Map (1844); R.A.F. V.A.P. CPE/UK 1934:
Other Earthworks and Allied Monuments
(168–171) Round Barrows, p. 444.
(172) Poundbury, hill-fort, p. 487.
(173–228) Roman Town (Durnovaria): Defences, p.
542, Streets, p. 551, Buildings, p. 553, Burials,
p. 571, Aqueduct, p. 585, Maumbury Rings, amphitheatre, p. 589.