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Tarrant Valley

Descending just 55m over its 12km length from Tarrant Gunville (ST 926 128) to where it joins the River Stour at Tarrant Crawford (ST 915 033), the Tarrant Valley is typical of the gently undulating landscape that has developed on the chalk of the eastern side of the county. The cycle ride in March shown in this gallery follows the quiet lane that runs along the length of the valley bottom, the route ascending gently, passing through the many small Tarrant villages before climbing onto the chalk down at Stubhampton (ST 920 135).

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A question in popular local pub quizzes is to ask people to name all of the Tarrant villages in the Tarrant valley – in ascending order – the answer being: Tarrant Crawford, Tarrant Keyneston, Tarrant Rushton, Tarrant Rawston, Tarrant Monkton, Tarrant Launceston, Tarrant Hinton, Tarrant Gunville.


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In the top row of pictures:

  • Church of St Mary, Tarrant Crawford, retains several 14th century wall paintings (picture)
  • Sculpture carved from a large felled beech tree, Tarrant Keyneston (picture)
  • Wartime housing in Tarrant Rushton (the airfield is on the hillside nearby) (picture)
  • Looking up-valley near Tarrant Rawston (picture)
  • By the War memorial in Tarrant Monkton (picture)

In the bottom row of pictures:

  • The ford at Tarrant Monkton, in heavy rains it can become impassable (picture)
  • Tarrant Launceston (picture)
  • Tarrant Hinton (picture)
  • Tarrant Hinton (picture)
  • The upper reaches of the Tarrant Valley, near Stubhampton (picture)

A major annual event at Tarrant Hinton: the Great Dorset Steam Fair

Nearby locations that also feature in galleries on this site:

directionChettle and Farnham

directionWimborne St Giles, Ackling Dyke (Roman road)

directionHolt Forest, Shapwick, Wimborne

directionBlandford Forum

More views of Dorset in March

Other sites on the web

Tarrant Rushton Airfield – well illustrated history of the airfield from 1943–1980 by Andrew Wright

The Dorset Page:   – 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 Tarrant Valley in this gallery were captured at high resolution.
This is images of dorset stock photography gallery 037
All photographs copyright © 1998–2003 John Allen

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