Occasionally I try and participate in a Landscape photography workshop in a part of the country I have never visited or am not familiar with. This year I joined a workshop on Dorset’s Jurassic Coast and the base for this workshop is Swanage. I have a very vague memory of a family holiday here over 50 years ago, when I was nine, sadly, too many years ago to remember much about it!
The Jurassic Coast is a World Heritage Site on the south coast of England. It stretches from Exmouth in East Devon to nearby Studland Bay in Dorset, a distance of about 96 miles (154 km).
The site spans 185 million years of geological history, coastal erosion having exposed an almost continuous sequence of rock formation covering the Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous periods. At different times, this area has been desert, shallow tropical sea and marsh, and the fossilised remains of the various creatures that lived can be found preserved in the rocks.
The workshop assembled on a Friday evening and was held over a weekend but because of the time it takes to get to Dorset from Norfolk I decided to travel down on the Thursday which would give me a day to explore the local area.
Below are some of my images from that weekend.
Top and Centre: One of the UK’s most noted long Distance path’s runs through Swanage, namely the South west Coastal Path. These three images are taken from the path as it meanders on to the east of the town. Bottom: Looking back towards Swanage from the path to the east.
Above: Swanage Beach to the east of the town
Above: Rainy Day Beach Huts. These images were shot on my exploration day on the Friday. The weather was foul, very windy and with heavy squalls.
Top: Autumn Sunrise on Swanage Beach.
Bottom: Banjo Pier – a small protuberance on the promenade leading to the town. Swanage has a larger pier on the other side of the bay close to Peverill Point.
Above: Three images of Corfe Castle
Above: Probably one of the most photographed places in UK – Durdle Dor. Every image I have seen shows the beach empty. The reality is very different. Even on a squally windy day which this was, the beach was thronged with day trippers and the car park above was near to full. Sadly not my best image of this place – it was a battle to exclude half the population of Dorset who seemed to have descended on the place!
Above: Next door to Durdle Dor is the much more photogenic and beautiful Man o’ War Bay which bizarrely was almost deserted.
Above: The Beech Trees at Kingston Lacey. Another landscape photographer magnet! About 200 years ago, the then Duke of Beaufort planted 365 Beach Trees down one side of this straight road. and 366 down the other side, one for each day of the year. As you can see they have matured nicely and now form a mile long natural arboreal archway along this busy road. Standing in the middle of the road to shoot is fraught with danger from fast moving vehicles, something I am sure the Duke did not envisage when he planted them.