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In praise of Poole artists

Its founder members include Augustus John and Henry Lamb, two of the best known names in 20th century British Art, and George Spencer Watson was an early president, but today’s Poole and East Dorset Art Society is a much more approachable group than the one they helped initiate in 1924. Conceived as a means of Read More…

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Conserving the past for the future

If history is all about the evidence, then how its sources are recorded and stored is of manifest importance. So the task of conserving and protecting the historical record for posterity is a vital part of the work undertaken at Dorset History Centre, the county’s archives service and local studies library. As a result of Read More…

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Rudolf Schwarz – from Belsen to Bournemouth

He arrived in Bournemouth in a blaze of publicity seventy years ago as the first post-war musical director of the re-formed Bournemouth Municipal Orchestra in its brand new home – the re-commissioned Winter Gardens – but the appointment of Rudolf Schwarz was not without controversy and even elicited questions in the House of Commons. A Read More…

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Upton House – ‘secret’ no more

For years it was one of Poole’s best-kept secrets, but lately Upton House and Country Park has been making much more of its many charms. It is now one of the town’s top ten things to do on the inescapable TripAdvisor review site and last year welcomed more than 670,000 visitors, a twelve per cent Read More…

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‘You know where you are with a horse’

They are both ready for the start of the National Hunt season and itching to get stuck into a race; their trainer, Helen Nelmes, is absolutely convinced they are going to do well, she just wants some more people aboard to enjoy it with her. For now, though, Menapian and It’sabouttime are confined to stables Read More…

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Parnham, so much more than furniture

On 15 April 2017 a fire destroyed the fabric of Parnham House to write a devastating new chapter in the chequered history of one of Dorset’s oldest stately homes. It was an ugly, inhuman, destructive blow to the 500-year-old house, particularly as its recent history had been anything but. This month marks 40 years since Read More…

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These routes are made for walking

Now in its fourth year, Gillingham Walking Festival is really hitting its stride. Having started in 2014 as a way of uniting various perambulatory activities already under way, it has grown each year and in 2016 saw more than 400 walkers clock up some 1650 miles on 21 planned walks. The festival played a major Read More…

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Rappers, Mollies and Fools by the sea

It’s where Rappers meet Mollies and Fools flirt with belly dancers. There are dancers in clogs performing step dances, but not clog dances, as Cotswold dancers from Dorset rub shoulders with traditional Slovak dancers before faces are painted, swords are drawn and sticks primed for a procession through town that ends with a set-to in Read More…

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New boost for cancer care in Dorset

For years cancer patients from all over the county have had to travel to the Dorset Cancer Centre at Poole Hospital for radiotherapy treatment. That can mean a daily journey for up to six and a half weeks – a source of tremendous physical, emotional and financial hardship on people at a time when they Read More…

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Renovating Corfe Castle – what might have been

It is one of Dorset’s most familiar beauty spots, instant visual shorthand for the Isle of Purbeck. It has been photographed, painted and sketched from every conceivable angle – it even appears on the opening credits of the Disney film, Bedknobs and Broomsticks. Last year a computer animation student digitally restored Corfe Castle, but had Read More…