Step ashore and enjoy Weymouth’s heritage heartland where historical buildings, a restored Victorian Fort, pubs, restaurants and the latest visitor attractions including the Brewers Quay/Timewalk and Deep Sea Adventure face a bustling flotilla of fishing boats, pleasure craft, catamarans and naval craft to form an ever changing view and atmosphere.
From Roman times the strategic value of this channel port has been exploited to its advantage and for nearly 2000 years, the twin Boroughs of Weymouth and Melcombe Regis have been major import/export centres.
Fierce rivalry between the boroughs over trade, smuggling and even piracy led Elizabeth I to combine them to form the basis of the modern town, now over 400 hundred years old. In 1588 many local ships fought the Spanish Armada in a major battle off Portland, and successfully captured the San Salvador which was brought into port and looted. The Mayor is reputed to have run away with the pay chest!
Having been ransacked by the French, and fought over in the Civil War, the harbour has seen many wars including during Napoleonic times, and World War II when 516,000 US troops left our ports for the D-Day invasion in Normandy.
Today the Brewers Quay/Timewalk records these significant historical events, whilst the Deep Sea Adventure, Victorian Nothe Fort and Tudor House also depict our local and maritime heritage.
Weymouth’s fame as a seaside town goes back over 200 years to the times when King George III and the Royal family spent their holidays here. And, although we are proud of our history, Weymouth is right up to date with the very best of facilities for today’s visitor, and still has Royal visitors.
Weymouth’s crowning glory is its award-winning beach. It’s safe, it’s soft and it’s sandy, with many special events and attractions throughout the year. The impressive sweep of the Georgian seafront houses a wide variety of hotels, restaurants and pubs, cafes and shops. You can pass the time by buying souvenirs and presents in small character shops or simply sit, relax and watch the world go by. Take one of the many outstanding coastal walks or drive through the unique countryside to visit some of the many memorable locations, visit TE Lawrence, Lawrence of Arabia’s House or the frequently written and filmed about Thomas Hardy Countryside with the beautiful scenery as seen in the much acclaimed film “Far From The Madding Crowd”.
Within walking distance of the town centre, you’ll find the Swannery and RSPB Nature Reserve, the swimming pool complex, colourful gardens and a host of attractions Open All Year.
Joined to the mainland of Weymouth, by the south-east tip of Chesil Beach and a public road bridge, the “Island” of Portland provides a most dramatic coastal landscape. An explorer’s Island with `curiosities’ of history and folklore just waiting to be discovered. Places of interest include: Portland Bill, Pulpit Rock and Lighthouse overlooking the English Channel; Portland Castle, one of the best preserved of Henry VIII’s Coastal forts; the mighty sweep of Chesil Beach; Portland Museum and Shipwreck Exhibition; Church Ope Cove, with the ruins of Rufus Castle and St Andrew’s Church. There are also Gardens, Churches, a Sculpture Park and Cliff Walks offering spectacular views and as evening falls the most breath taking sunset you may ever see!.
Weymouth is centrally placed and using it as a base the visitor has the opportunity to explore some of the wonders of the Dorset countryside, home to the great writers such as William Barnes, Thomas Hardy and more recently Jane Austin. The County is proud of its rich and varied history with places like Corfe Castle dating back to the Norman settlements after the Battle of Hastings in 1066, damaged beyond repair by the Roundheads during the Civil War of 1643. Visit the Tolpuddle Martyrs Museum or the incredible Maiden Castle – a vast earth hill fort build by the Ancient Britons and one of the most important sites of its kind in Europe or visit the Celtic God of fertility, Nodens, an awesome carving in the chalk hills of Cerne.
You’re Welcome in Weymouth and Portland – A Seaside town with so much more……
More than just a holiday destination Weymouth, Portland and South West Dorset is steeped in history and heritage from the Pilgrims leaving Weymouth and founding Weymouth Massachusetts to the literary delights of Thomas Hardy highlighting our beautiful countryside; King George III’s favourite seaside location and being the largest American embarkation point for the Normandy landings, D-Day 1944, with so much more….
Visit the Rotary Club of Weymouth’s own pages, click here