Skip to main content

Strange Dorset Place Names

 

Dorset has some quite quirky, strange and rude place names. Among them are:

Aunt Mary’s Bottom, a valley near Rampisham Hill but who was Aunt Mary?

Belchalwell, near Blandford. Was once the home of television personality Jack Hargreaves.

Burnt Bottom, near Hooke in West Dorset.

Crumpet’s Drive, Lytchett Matravers. It sounds quite tasty!

Droop, a hamlet near Blandford. The name just means an ‘outlying farm.’

Eype, seaside village near Bridport from the Old English meaning ‘steep place.

Happy Bottom, a hamlet near Corfe Mullen which has its own nature reserve.

Melbury Bubb, near Sherborne. Bubbe was a landowning family and Melbury meant ‘a multi-coloured hill.’

Piddletrenthide & Piddlehinton, near Dorchester and all things to do with the River Piddle. Not forgetting also Tolpuddle, Briantspuddle and Puddletown.

Ryme Intrinsica, near Sherborne which means on the ‘rim of a ridge.'

Scratchy Bottom, near Lulworth and was featured in the 1967 film Far from the Madding Crowd.

Shaggs, a hamlet near East Lulworth. Prince Harry is said to have rented a cottage here.

Shatters Hill is a road in Wareham.

Shitterton, near Bere Regis was named after its drains. It has frequently had its village sign stolen.

Sixpenny Handley, in North Dorset sometimes written as 6d Handley.

Tincleton, near Dorchester. The name comes from the Old English meaning ‘farm in a valley.’

Troy Town, near Dorchester. Named after a long lost maze also known as a Troy Town.

Toller Porcorum, in West Dorset meaning the River Toller ‘of the pigs.’

Winterborne Stickland, near Blandford. Stickland means a ‘steep hill’ while Winterborne is the River or Stream.

Then there are Nettlecombe, Mappowder, Hazelbury Bryan, Stourton Caundle, Punknowle, Witchampton, Toller Canonicorum etc, etc…

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Chimney Sweep Tragedy

Crown Hotel, Blandford is reckoned to be one of Dorset’s oldest hostelries. Yet its most tragic day, during a long history, must surely be when a young chimney sweep lost his life. The chimney sweep, who was just a child, suffocated and was burnt to death in a Crown Hotel chimney which had been alight a little while before. ‘His cries were dreadful and no-one could give assistance. Part of the chimney was taken down before he was got out.’ (Salisbury & Winchester Gazette 27th March 1780) The lad had gone up one chimney and attempting to go down another had become stuck. At the time children were used to climb up chimneys to clean out soot deposits. With hands and knees, they would shimmy up narrow dark flue spaces packed thick with soot and debris. After the 1731 Great Fire of Blandford it was realised that it was important to sweep chimneys regularly while many rebuilt houses had narrower ones. Smaller chimneys and complicated flues were a potential death trap for children. The sw

Bravest Village Controversy

A Dorset village was once recognised as the bravest in England. That village was Shillingstone in North Dorset. After the outbreak of World War I, the newspaper the Weekly Dispatch inaugurated a competition for the village that sent, in the first six months of the war, the highest percentage of its population into the British Services. According to local newspaper, the Western Gazette Shillingstone sent 90 men out of a total population of 565. (Western Gazette Friday 26 th September 1919) Across the country,  365 other villages sent in their returns. However, the competition would not prove to be short of controversy. The award was made to Knowlton in Kent which with 39 inhabitants and six houses had sent 11 men. However, the Rector of Shillingstone, Dr Cooke protested that Knowlton was too small to be a village and in fact was a hamlet. The matter was referred to the Attorney General, Sir Frederick Smith who held that the original decision should stand as no minimum population ha

Tarrant Rushton's Nuclear Secret

Tarrant Rushton was a large RAF base used for glider operations during World War II. It was then taken over by Flight Refuelling for the conversion of aircraft for the development of aircraft in-flight refuelling. However, between 1958 & 1965, the Tarrant Rushton airfield had a much more secretive and less publicised role. This was in support of the nation’s nuclear bomber deterrent, as Tarrant Rushton airfield became a QRA (Quick Reaction Alert) dispersal unit.   During 1958, contractors Costain reinforced the main runway and carried out other work to ensure the giant bomber aircraft could be accommodated. At times just a few miles from Blandford, there would have been up to four RAF Vickers Valiant bombers at Tarrant Rushton ready to become airborne in minutes charged with nuclear weapons. The bombers were from 148 Squadron at RAF Marham in Norfolk. As there was no suitable accommodation at the airfield, an old US Air Force Hospital building at Martin was used. At the time, the