The National Trust has just spent £682,000 buying Eastman, a 63 acre
plot of farmland between Seacombe and Winspit on the Isle of Purbeck. The land
was bought with cash from the National Trust’s ‘Neptune Campaign’.
Eastman is an archaeologically rich site with medieval strip lynchet field
systems created by ploughing. The site is also an important wildlife habitat
and a ten year countryside stewardship scheme has been set up for grazing livestock
on the land. The national Trust already own around 3200 hectares of land on
the Isle of Purbeck.
The World Heritage Coast Hospitality Association’s visual imaging display
has won two tourism awards at shows in Madrid and Milan. Their display of
180 photo’s from around the Jurassic Coast is set to music with a holiday
storyline. The display is currently touring travel fairs through Europe to
raise awareness for holidays to the Jurassic Coastline.
Seahorse found in Kimmeridge Bay
A dead seahorse was found by a beach comber in Kimmeridge Bay. These elusive
creatures are related to pipefish and the males carry the developing eggs in
a pouch on their belly until they ‘give birth’. Although this find
points to seahorses somewhere within the Purbeck Marine Wildlife Reserve, a live
one has yet to be seen. Seahorses prefer eelgrass habitat and its tiny body could
quite easily have been carried into Kimmeridge Bay by the tides from much further
Portland to host the Olympics 2012 sailing
Portland Harbour is undergoing preparations to host the London 2012 Olympic Games
and Paralypic Games. The harbour and Weymouth Bay are credited by the Royal Yachting
Association as having the best sailing waters in Northern Europe. The venue is
undergoing major building work in preparation for the event which will bring
thousands of spectators to the resort of Weymouth and give Portland a well earned
boost following the closure of its Naval Base.
The recently opened Weymouth & Portland National Sailing Academy will be
quay to hosting the sailing and windsurfing events.
13th February 2006
Cliff fall at Dunscombe
A large section of cliff to the east of sidmouth came crashing down to the
beach taking the cliff top foot path with it. This rock fall demonstrates the
ongoing processes of coastal erosion which affect the entire Jurassic Coastline.
14th January 2006
Coastguard rescue teams pulled a boy to safety
who had been stuck chest deep in mud after a massive sudden mudslide
at Charmouth. The boy’s father was also rescued after attempting
to save his son.
The combination of the mudslide and rising tide meant that fifteen other people
were led to safety by the Coastguards, including two paragliders who had landed
on the beach the wrong side of the fall.
The overlying free draining Cretaceous geology makes this area prone to mudslides,
the combination of recent prolonged wet weather creating instability within
the cliff sediments.
A local fossil collector said this was the largest mudslide he had seen in
14th October 2005
Ichthyosaur found by Lyme Regis digger
The seafront of Lyme Regis is undergoing major works to protect its historic
seafront. Barges ferry gravel sucked from the seabed offshore to the beach where
it is spread by diggers. During the works there was an unexpected find of an
Ichthyosaur. This marine reptile would have been amongst the top predators in
the Jurassic seas dating from a period around 190 million years ago. Unfortunately
the head was damaged by the digger bucket, but the rest of the remaining skeleton
appears relatively intact. It is hoped the fossil find can be removed, cleaned
and displayed in the Lyme Regis Museum.
6th October 2005
Clavell Tower to be moved and restored
After years of campaigning the Clavell Tower overlooking Kimmeridge Bay now has
enough money to be taken down and rebuilt further inland.
The Heritage Lottery Fund have given a grant of £436,700 towards this £714,297
project. The fantastic folly was built in 1831 by the Reverend John Richards
and will be restored for use as holiday apartments. The cliff on which it stands
is crumbling away and so relocating this important landmark is the only option.
The move will mean the tower will be restored to its former glory.
9th April 2005
Cliff fall blocks Burton Beach
A fresh cliff fall at Burton Bradstock has nearly cut the beach in two. Although
the fallen rocks are passable at low water, it’s most tricky at high tide,
when walkers are forced to scramble over the debris. The cliffs consist of the
Bridport Sands capped with Inferior Oolite and are some of the most spectacular
along the Jurassic Coast. The sediments here were laid down in a shallow river
delta that flowed into the sea around 185 million years ago. This is just one
example of the ongoing coastal erosion which affects the entire Jurassic Coastline.
Durlston Castle to become Jurassic Coast Gateway
Durlston Castle at Durlston Country Park, Swanage is undergoing a transformation
into an information Centre for visitors to the Jurassic Coast. It is already
taking shape with the ‘Lookout Café’ now providing refreshments
to walkers. Durlston Castle was originally built as part of the Durlston Country
Park founded by George Burt in 1864.
3rd October 2002
HRH The Prince of Wales opens the Jurassic Coast
World Heritage Site
Two specially commissioned stone markers have been unveiled by His Royal Highness
The Prince of Wales to inaugurate the World Heritage Site. The Geo Needle stands
at Orcombe Point and contains stones from all along the Jurassic Coast. A slab
of Purbeck Limestone sits in Lulworth Cove and contains a map of the World Heritage
Site which is engraved into its face.
The Jurassic Coast wins World Heritage Status
The Dorset and East Devon coastline is awarded World Heritage Status by UNESCO,
the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation. The
95 mile long Jurassic Coastline is England’s first natural World Heritage
Site and stands within the ranks of other natural World Heritage Sites such
as the Grand Canyon in America and the Great Barrier Reef off the north east
coast of Australia.