June 09, 2022
Vicky and I are very lucky to live and work here in North Dorset. Our beautiful surrounding Dorset and Wiltshire countryside is a constant source of inspiration for our design process. Last year we were inspired to release a collection based on our walks along the River Stour across our neighbouring fields.
We thought we would let you know about a couple of our favourite locations just outside Shaftesbury where we regularly walk.
Wardour Castle ruins, dating back to the 14th century, lies on the boundaries of Tisbury and Donhead St Andrew, just north of Shaftesbury. The castle is open to the public and even featured in the Robin Hood movie with Kevin Costner.
There are several stunning walks to try around this beautiful location across fields and through stunning woodlands. Our favourite is a fabulous 6km circular walk which also takes you past New Wardour Castle before returning to the old castle ruins. Dogs are welcome too as long as they remain on leads and our Jack Russell Dotty loves this walk even at the tender age of 14! The walk takes approximately 2 hours and you pass a series of beautiful ponds and follow the trail through delightful woodlands and fields. Vicky and I are so inspired by the varied and stunning scenery, trees, flowers and wildlife along the way which is constantly changing throughout the seasons. We take so many photos too for inspiration.
Another favourite haunt is along the edge of pretty Fonthill Lake again just outside Tisbury within the Fonthill Estate. The estate hosts several charity open garden events at Fonthill House which are well worth a visit too. The gardens and views are wonderful and we have lots of wonderful memories from our visits.
Fonthill lake is spectacular and a great favourite for us to visit for dog walks. There are many footpaths in the area for you to explore but we are always happy to just walk along the lakeside edge and stop to watch the water, reflections, swans, mandarin ducks and moorhens. In warmer months the water warms and takes on a stunning blue colour in the shallower middle section. Apparently this is a natural phenomenon caused by calcium and magnesium levels mixing and precipitating, causing this lovely “Serpentine Blue” which is just so beautiful. After a lovely walk you can call in at The Beckford Arms too for refreshments or the most wonderful meal.
We hope you might visit these lovely locations if you are visiting the area.
Best Wishes Maggie & Vicky xx
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