We escaped for just one day!

Yesterday, Sunday, we escaped with others from church, on a coach trip to Lulworth Castle and Cove which are in Dorset. The 17th C castle originally started out as a hunting lodge in 1608 and has entertained 7 of our monarchs, belonging to the same family for 370 yrs.

Lulworth Castle

Lulworth Castle

The inside was completely destroyed by fire in 1929, restoration has restored the outside to its former glory and consolidated the interior. You are able to climb the tower on the right hand corner, but I declined! It is now owned by the National Trust and the family live in a very large house a short distance away.

Lulworth Castle

In the grounds stands the first Catholic chapel to be built since the Reformation. When Henry VIII broke with the Church of Rome, catholics were subject to persecution. During the time of Elizabeth Ist, they were hung, drawn and quartered. It wasn’t until 1791 that catholics were allowed to worship in public and the Weld family, who owned Lulworth Castle, until then, held private services within the castle.In 1786 George III gave permission to build a mausoleum ” and you may furnish it inside as you wish” From the outside it looks like a mausoleum, but inside it is a Catholic Chapel.  King George and Queen Charlotte visited in 1791 and gave it their approval.  John Carroll, the first Catholic Bishop in the USA was consecrated there.

Hydrangeas at Lulworth

From inside the castle I was able to see some colourful flowers beyond a yew hedge but when I enquired if the garden was open, was told that it was closed and belonged to the large house beyond the hedge where I think the family now live. I had to make do with photographing the hydrangeas through the gate.

Lulworth Castle

A shame really but I had to respect their privacy.

Sweet Chestnut tree

In the parkland there was this huge Sweet Chestnut tree absolutely covered with hundreds of fruit.

Lulworth Cove

From the parkland, we could see the sea in the distance, this is where we were off to next, Lulworth Cove.

Lulworth Cove

After a lunch at one of the hotels in West Lulworth we then made our way down to Lulworth Cove, a natural almost circular cove which gives shelter to the people and little boats. We had been so lucky with the weather, but look at those clouds, fortunately they had passed over without dropping their rain.

Lulworth Cove

This photo shows the limestone cliffs which stretch eastwards towards Dover and is included in the Jurassic Coast, where so many fossils and Dinosaur remains have been found. The sky was getting darker and darker, but still no rain for us!

Limestone carving

Just outside the Heritage Centre is this Limestone carving showing the wildlife that used to wander about here a few million years ago.

Rosa rugosa

Back to the car park for our coach, the hedging was made up of Rosa rugosa, all the bushes were absolutely covered with beautiful red rosehips.


The rosehips were huge, just like tomatoes! Do you think our dormouse would like to eat these? I have room in the woodland where I could plant a hedge on the sunny side near the road through the village, what do you think?

We had a short shower on the way home, but when we got back to our village, I think there had been a lot of rain as everywhere was very wet and the garden looking a lot happier.

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18 Responses to We escaped for just one day!

  1. Cathy says:

    Good to have a day out somewhere new, and at least you saw the hydrangeas and rugosa hedge as a token garden visit! Nice to have avoided the rain and yet still have wet garden when you got home!

    • Pauline says:

      Yes Cathy, it’s good to have a change of scene, we enjoyed ourselves so much that we think it is an area where we could have a mini break in the future. I’m always looking for plants when I’m out, even if its just the few we saw yesterday, very impressed with the rosehips! The plants here are looking so much better today after their long drink, they have really appreciated the rain we had over the weekend.

  2. Cathy says:

    What gorgeous rosehips – I bet the dormouse would have a feast!

    • Pauline says:

      I think the dormouse would like them Cathy, that was the first thing I thought about when I saw them yesterday and if we had plenty, we might have some to make rosehip syrup!

  3. Anna says:

    An area I’ve always wanted to visit Pauline. It sounds as if you had a grand day out. I like that limestone carving. I imagine that your little dormouse would welcome an opportunity to nibble such rosehips. Glad to hear that your garden has had a soaking. We’ve had a fair amount of the wet stuff over the last few days and the garden has really appreciated it.

    • Pauline says:

      We’ve been to Dorset many a time Anna, but never to that part, it was all so beautiful, we will definitely go again. The rosehips are so large, I think one would last a dormouse about a week!

  4. What a nice visit! It is amazing (especially to this Pennsylvania girl) that you live so near to such fantastical places. The stuff of dreams 🙂 Thanks for sharing your lovely photos!

    • Pauline says:

      Julie, we are so lucky to live somewhere where amazing history is all around us, it certainly makes us think about our ancestors and how they lived. It was a wonderful day out, we were so glad that we went.

  5. Christina says:

    Looks like you had a great day out, nice to steal days at the end of summer. I’ve been to Lulworth cove on numerous occasions but somehow missed the castle! How did that happen. Thanks for sharing Pauline, I enjoyed my visit.

    • Pauline says:

      It’s a lovely part of Dorset isn’t it Christina, not part that we have been to before, so we must return and explore some more, maybe in the springtime, to look for wild flowers on the cliff tops! The castle is in East Lulworth and is a short drive away from the cove itself, surrounded by trees, so not surprising you missed it.
      Btw, I now have your Lysimachia effemerum seeds ready for you, if you could let me have an address to send them to I will put them in the post.

  6. Caro says:

    What a wonderful day to round off the summer! A trip to the seaside is always so invigorating! As a child I lived along the coast from Lulworth Cove and Durdle Dor (the spelling I’ve always known it by) so these were favoured family outings at the weekend. Lucky you, I’d forgotten how beautiful it is! Like Christina, above, I never knew there was a castle there, you learn something every day! Those car park rose hips are gorgeous – I’d be reaching for a plastic bag and some secateurs! Rose hip syrup, yum!

    • Pauline says:

      We didn’t have time Caro to walk to Durdle Door, that’s why we must go back! I’m so glad to have brought back happy memories for you, it is such a lovely spot. Maybe the castle wasn’t in the hands of the National Trust and signposted by them when you went as a child, I don’t think you could have missed it if it had been. If I’d had a bag and secateurs I think some rose hips might have come home with me, I’ll just have to grow my own!

  7. wellywoman says:

    I have always wanted to go there but we never seem to make it. I think Dorset might be on the list of potential holiday destinations for next year. Loving the green sweet chestnuts and the huge rose hips. Glad to see you managed to escape any major rain.

    • Pauline says:

      Dorset is a lovely county WW, we have only explored the northern part so far, so must rectify that next year and return to the Lulworth area.The sweet chestnuts weren’t ready unfortunately, if they had been on the ground, some would definitely come home with me!

  8. rusty duck says:

    How lovely Lulworth is, the colour of that sea even under the grey clouds. You were luckier with the weather than us!!

    • Pauline says:

      We were certainly very lucky with the weather Jessica, there was a very short shower while we were indoors having our lunch, but that was it, we managed to stay dry. We had taken our waterproofs, sun cream, sunspecs, ready for any eventuality, didn’t need any of them! Lulworth is a charming place, we will definitely be back!

  9. pbmgarden says:

    Enjoyed this little tour Pauline. Looks like a wonderful place to visit. What a shame not to be able to see more gardens but I do love that hydrangea hedge. Glad you received a refreshing rain in your own garden. Susie

    • Pauline says:

      It is a very lovely place Susie, we really must visit again, for a bit longer next time as there is so much to explore and enjoy in the area. The garden is looking so much better now as we have had a few days of gentle rain, just what was needed!

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