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.

Sunday, 14 August 2011

St Martin's Church, Wareham

St Martin's is the oldest surviving church in Dorset and represents the most complete example of a Saxon church in the county.  Its Saxon origin can be seen in the tall, narrow nave and chancel, late Saxon wall-arcading in the North West Isle and traces of a Saxon door. The building has been adapted and enlarged but the nave and a tiny window in the north side of the chancel are original to the church's construction in around 1030.

Fragmented 12th-century frescoes adorn the chancel, depicting events from the life of St Martin, whilst above the chancel arch is a Royal Arms of Queen Anne dated 1713, flanked by black letter scriptural texts of about 1600 which overlay earlier scripts.

A number of red stars have been painted on one of the walls, supposedly one for every person who died in the town during the great plague in the 17th century.
In the aisle is Eric Kennington's carved efficy of T E Lawrence in Arabian dress.


  1. What a beautiful little church!

  2. Thanks for looking in Kate - yes we think it's a bit special!

    We have had a look at your blog (which is very impressive) and see that, like Nick, you enjoywriting. Good luck with it.

    Karen and Nick

  3. Hi,

    Yes, I do write. I see you are setting up a new group. Best of luck with it! Dorset needs some writers groups - I had to go all the way to Yeovil to find mine!


  4. Mmm... trying to start a group. In reality there has been very little interest I'm afraid. I live in hope though!

  5. That's a shame. A good writing group is invaluable for moral support and honing your craft.

    There's a lot going on in Yeovil, if it's not too far - although we have people come from much further afield.

    The YCAA has a good progamme of literary events coming up which you and the rest of your group might find interesting. I'm one of the3 pannelists for the Booker Debate along with Julie Musk from Roving Press.


  6. Kate, thanks for the link, it all looks very vibrant compared to where I live. If my group ever gets off the ground I'd love to visit Yeovil and see what goes on and say hello!


  7. Hello Karen and Nick, Just wanted to leave a quick note to say yet again how much I enjoy your blog and especially loved this latest entry with fascinating church. wonderful evocative photos and always interesting reading the history connected to the places you visit. Lovely to experience them, albeit vicariously . Always a treat to stop by and see your latest offerings.

  8. Thanks once again Valkrye for your kind comments. St Martins is certainly a fascinating lettl church. Glad you continue to enjoy our blog. We've not had chance lately to post any new entries, but will try to add something new soon! Karen & Nick