Welcome to Dorset Allsorts

We'll be posting a variety of facts and photos of whatever takes our fancy as we wander around Dorset. They may be of churches, buildings, visitor attractions or natural scenes – in fact there will be all sorts! We hope they will give you a glimpse of some of the sights this beautiful county has to offer.

Friday, 7 May 2010

Cerne Abbas

Cerne Abbas was once an important centre for the leather and brewing industries, but is now a quiet village furnished with a fair sprinkling of quaint pubs and tea rooms; just what the weary walker wants!

Also in the village are the ruins of an Abbey which are definitely worth a look. The abbey was first established in 978, but all that now remains is a 15th century gatehouse and the guest house, which you can see in these pictures.

Of course, what most people want to see is the Giant, a turf cut figure which is best viewed from the valley below. We tried walking up the hill by the side of the Giant, but it disapears from sight when you do that!

The giant is about 180′ high and nearly 170′ wide. It’s thought to represent either a Celtic warrior god or the Roman deity Hercules. Although its age and origin are unknown, it has become a popular part of local culture and folklore, which usually associates it with fertility (for obvious reasons!). It’s also become a favourite target for pranksters; most memorably, in 2007, a large image of Homer Simpson holding a doughnut was spray painted next to the Giant as a publicity stunt for the upcoming Simpsons’ Movie.

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