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During the summer months Swanage becomes a lively beach holiday destination, during winter months it reverts to being a quiet coastal town. This gallery shows the out of season resort; combining pictures from February, March and April – the beach huts may be boarded up against winter gales, the streets relatively deserted, the gaudy reds and yellows of summer missing from the scene, but there is still much to be enjoyed in the altogether more unhurried atmosphere prevailing at this time of year.

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In the top row of pictures:

  • View westwards over Swanage from above Peveril Point (picture)
  • Lining many of the roads throughout the town – hotels and guest houses (picture)
  • Former smithy at junction of High Street and the ancient Priest's Way (picture)
  • Church Hill (St Mary's in the background) and Cross erected in memory of Sir Reginald Palgrave 1829–1904 (picture)
  • Mill pond beside St Mary's Church (picture)

In the middle row of pictures:

  • A legacy of the long history of quarrying on Purbeck – stone roofs are a common sight throughout the town (picture)
  • The old town lock-up – 'Erected for the Prevention of Vice & Immorality by the Friends of Religion & good Order AD 1803' (picture)
  • The arrival of the railway in 1885 brought with it a rapid increase in Swanage's popularity as a resort. The line – now restored – regularly has steam pulled services to Corfe Castle and beyond (picture)
  • Clock tower memorial to the Duke of Wellington, originally erected in London in 1854, brought to Swanage in 1868 by John Mowlem (born in 1788 in Swanage, founder of the well-known London firm of civil engineering contractors) (picture)
  • The Victorian Pier, opened in 1896, now restored and in use once more (picture)

In the bottom row of pictures:

  • Peveril Point – National Coastwatch station, Old Harry and Bournemouth in the far distance (picture)
  • Durlston Bay – to the south of Peveril Point (picture)
  • The Globe in Durlston Country Park, erected in 1887 by George Burt – nephew of John Mowlem (picture)
  • Sea cliffs and Tilly Whim quarry, between Durlston Head and Anvil Point, a favourite spot from which to observe dolphins (picture)
  • The lighthouse at Anvil Point (picture)

See also: the Swanage Folk Festival and Swanage to Sandbanks

Nearby locations that also feature in galleries on this site:

directionBallard Down, Studland Bay

directionDancing Ledge

directionChapman's Pool, Corfe Castle, Wareham

Other sites on the web

Purbeck District Council:   events, facts, links and accommodation

The Swanage Railway

The Durlston Country Park and Marine Project

The coastline shown here forms part of the Jurassic Coast World Heritage Site

West's Geology Field Guide to the Swanage Bay and Durlston Bay areas

The Dorset Page:   Swanage – local information and links to further resources on the web

Maps of the area on streetmap.co.uk:   1:50,000 – detail, 1:250,000 – locality and route to get there

picture resolution
The pictures of Swanage in this gallery were captured at high resolution.
This is images of dorset stock photography gallery 027
All photographs copyright © 1998–2003 John Allen

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