Out and About

National Mills weekend at Dunster

THE ancient working watermill at Dunster on the Somerset coast will be part of the National Mills Weekend, on Saturday 11th and Sunday 12th May. Visitors to the National Trust property will be able to see the 18th-century watermill in action on both days. There will be mill tours discussing how the mill works and…

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Hot February brings early tulips to Dyrham Park

THOUSANDS of tulips are in bloom at the National Trust’s Dyrham Park, bringing an explosion of spring colour to the gardens. Thanks to a very hot spell in February and a dry spring, the flowers are coming up a little earlier than normal this year. Thousands of carefully-selected tulip bulbs, imported from Holland, were planted…

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Sustainable Living at Springhead

THE Springhead Trust opens the beautiful lakeside gardens at Fontmell Magna on Bank Holiday Monday, 6th May, for the Creative and Sustainable Living Fair and open garden event. It is an opportunity to visit one of Dorset’s most fascinating gardens in all its spring glory, and a stimulating introduction to aspects of sustainable living. The…

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Hardy Monument reopens after winter

THE Hardy Monument – the Dorset landmark which celebrates the naval Hardy, not the writer – will reopen to visitors on Wednesday 17th April after its winter closure. The Portland stone ‘spyglass’ monument stands on the highest point of Black Down, 241 meters above sea level, with uninterrupted views out over the English Channel. It…

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Ham Hill’s Iron Age hillfort is saved for the nation

AN important Iron Age hillfort and other archaeological remains, covering 73 acres at Ham Hill Country Park has been purchased with £235,000 from the National Heritage Memorial Fund (NHMF), funding from the Friends of Ham Hill and a capital grant from South Somerset District Council. The area that has been saved for the nation makes…

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Join the RSPB for a not-quite dawn chorus walk

THE dawn chorus is one of the glories of the spring, but it’s a bit early for many people, so the RSPB has arranged a seies of “not quite dawn chorus” guided walks at the Arne nature reserve, on Thursdays in April and on 2nd May from 7 to 9am. Ellie Sunderland, RSPB Arne visitor…

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Longleat’s 70th anniversary

LONGLEAT House is this year marking 70 years since it became the first stately home to open its doors to the public on a fully commercial basis. As part of the celebrations, Viscount and Viscountess Weymouth, Ceawlin and Emma Thynn, have recreated iconic photos from the time featuring Ceawlin’s grandfather, the 6th Marquess of Bath,…

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Arts and Crafts at Lytes Cary Manor

VISITORS to the National Trust’s Lytes Cary Manor near Somerton get a taste of Tudor living and 20th century gardening style following a winter of conservation and restoration work. Changes in the Arts and Crafts inspired garden include the renovation and re-emergence of the pond, one of the original features of the garden introduced by…

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Dorset Wildlife Trust in April

HERE is this month’s special Dorset Wildlife Trust events. For volunteering opportunities, visit www.dorsetwildifetrust.org.uk/volunteering To 14th April – Easter art exhibition, Fine Foundation Wild Seas Centre, 10.30am – 5pm; work inspired by nature and the sea by DWT volunteers. To 14th April – Get Dorset Buzzing Roadshow, Chesil Beach Centre, with family games including the…

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Knoll Gardens silver jubilee

A PROGRAMME of horticultural walks, talks and masterclasses has been arranged to mark the 25th anniversary of Knoll Gardens near Wimborne. The events will be led by Neil Lucas, the UK’s leading authority on ornamental grasses, whose continuously developing style has seen the East Dorset gardens become internationally acknowledged for its naturalistic planting. The 2019…

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