Tuesday, 3 January 2012


Please excuse the tired expression, but this was towards the end of a lot of walking through the day.

We hade a lovely day walking around Corfe, and then around St.Aldhelm's Head and Winspit. I hope you enjoy just taking a walk through the day with us as you go through the photos.

We arrive at Corfe, and Amanda togs up against the bitterly cold wind.

The main street in Corfe, with the castle in the background.

Down a lane, and the 800 year old church.

The castle, built in the 11th century. We had a nice cup of tea and a toasted tea cake in the cafe here.

A limestone quarry on the path from Worth Matravers to St.Aldhelm's Head.

A view of some of the Jurassic coast from the quarry area.

The cottages, and St. Aldhelms Chapel, on the cliff top.

The path, looking back away from the head.

The chapel, also about 800 years old, was used by monks etc using the pligrims trail from Penzance to London. No doubt a welcome stop on the long walk.

When entering, the three foot thick walls and heavy oak door soon shut out the freezing wind from the inside of this ancient place.

And I made my first prayer of the year sat here.

Then it was off along the coast path, past the coastguard lookout, and on to Winspit.

Breathtaking views everywhere.

Some very old, abandoned building ruins, where there was once a thriving quarry community.

The path along the cliff top was very muddy and slippery.

And we finally arrived at the dissused quarry caves at Winspit.

In the photo above, you can just make out the climbers on the cliff face. I don't mind a bit of climbing on Granite, but limestone is notoriously unstable and crumbly, and so there is always a danger of the rocks giving way.

The sea was spectacular, and this idiot thought that he was clever. His poor dog kept getting washed in as he threw it's stick into the water! This, and he had children.....such a good example eh?

The day was coming to an end.

And so after taking what were hundreds of photos, I had a quick look inside the caves.

Long since abandoned, they were haunting and still. The roof only supported by a few stone pillars.

I would come here as a youth, and the stress fractures in the roof have become numerous and large. One day, maybe even when someone is inside the caves, the roof will collapse.

Not today though.

We took the long and sloping path back up to Worth, Amanda set off for The Square & Compass via the village pond, I headed a mile or so the other way to retrieve the van, and then met her at the pub. A roaring fire, Christmas tree, good ale and whisky, room packed with people talking and dogs laying all over the floor....a pretty darned perfect day!



  1. What a great hike/adventure. Thank you for sharing. Looks like you had a great day for sure.

  2. It really was wonderful Sherlock. And hopefully, we will get over there far more often, as I have missed the whole area a lot.

  3. What a wonderful way to start the new year! It does sound like a perfect day!

  4. Ginny, it's hard to explain, but I feel as though my soul is returning.

  5. wow! those are great photos :) thank you for sharing them. have a great and fruitful new year (be-lated) haha...

  6. Gary,

    I can not imagine hiking about in and around such places that have had human inhabitants for hundreds and hundreds of years, eight hundred as you mentioned. To walk on ground trod by generations heaped upon generation, to wonder if you are crossing the path of some long gone ancestor whose existence span such a brief moment and then was swept away like a leaf in the wind. To touch the stones placed by hands so long ago and feel connected to the past, a very real, human past. Should some day I be so lucky to take the same hike you have posted.

    The Chapel is amazing and it plants the seeds of wonder. Why was this site chosen, who labored to build it, what events, both solemn and festive, has it bore witness. Thank you so much for sharing your and A’s hike as with all you posts I have found it entertaining and enlightening. – gary

    PS – And I agree that ending the day in the relaxed atmosphere of the pub you have described would have made it a most perfect day.

  7. Though I'm too out of shape to have made the trek in person, I was SO with you in "spirit"! Particularly in the chapel...what an experience it must have been. How far WAS this hike????

    Then I was struck by the words you chose to describe the caves - "Long since abandoned, they were haunting and still. The roof only supported by a few stone pillars."

    I immediately thought how descriptive that is of the times I have wandered from (or squandered) the life and warmth of Christ within...It reinforced my determination to be continually filled by the Spirit, alive and lively in 2012!

  8. Hi Gary,
    The church in Worth Matravers, a couple of miles away, was built at the same time as the chapel. As the chapel is right on the pilrims way, I think it was provided as a convenient point of rest and prayer to passing monks walking from Penzance to London. Apparently, the monks would carry a small bell with them and ring it when approaching any villages, in the hope that in return for leading some form of worship, food etc would be offered. I hope that at some point you can make it over here my friend, and we will go there, and share a beer together at the Square & Compass!

  9. Dear Rebecca,
    To have 'squandered my life with Christ'. How that rings true with me.