Canford Cliffs: Landslip causes concern

A fence on cliff path alongside Cliff Drive at Canford Cliffs

A slight cliff fall at Canford Cliffs is causing concern.

The slip might be missed, especially on the Canford Cliffs Promenade, but the higher coast path has been fenced off.

Planned work by Poole Council on new beach huts has also been put on hold in case there are further falls.

There has also been cliff movement to the east outside the BIC where barriers have been erected on the wide coast path running downhill to Bournemouth Pier.

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Keyhaven Lambing Day

Keep walking east along the Bournemouth Coast Path and eventually, at the end of Christchurch Bay, you come to the Hurst Spit and Keyhaven.

You may see some sheep.

Tomorrow Saturday 1 April is Aubrey Farm open day at Keyhaven 10am-3pm.


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Christchurch Priory is Bill Bryson’s favourite church

Christchurch Priory is seen from Hengistbury Head and close by on the Southbourne-Mudeford winter coast path route.

“This is my first love among English churches,” says Bill Bryson who has listed his 14 favourite churches for the National Churches Trust.

“Christchurch, Dorset, was where my wife and I lived when we were first married. I passed through the grounds of the priory almost daily for two years, and I could never do so without stopping to gawp at its magnificence. Stone doesn’t get more glorious than this.

“How so many locals could scurry past it without seeming to notice its presence, never mind its grandeur, was a permanent mystery to me”

The writer recently spoke warmly of Highcliffe seafront when opposing the super beach hut plans.

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Highcliffe Castle path closed again

The path from the grounds of Highcliffe Castle down towards the beach, part of the Christchurch Coastal Path, is again closed.

There are two alternatives for walkers.

If you do not wish to visit Highcliffe Castle then cliff steps to the west by the former warden’s lodge in Steamer Point Woods can be used.

If you reach the castle grounds then you should leave by the main entrance and go right at Lymington Road. You will have the pleasure of passing the original castle gateway with its lodges (now the Lord Bute hotel; right) and the church (left).

Go right into Wharncliffe Road and after the road has turned left go right along a footpath leading to the cliff top.

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The Time of Their Lives: coastal film scenes

The Time of Their Lives film, starring Joan Collins and Pauline Collins, is released this week.

There was much excitement last summer when shooting took place around Boscombe Pier.

The Boscombe clifftop and Hengistbury Head feature in the final footage along with other local locations.

The Guardian has a trailer.

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Leslie Ward’s Twenties coast at the Russell-Cotes

The Bay from Durley Chine c1925 by Leslie Ward

I still find admission charges at the Russell-Cotes Art Galley & Museum on the Bournemouth East Cliff to be confusing.

On arriving this week I was told that entry was £6. But it turned out this is not the cheapest ticket. But it’s £6 if you make it gift aided and give your name and address.

Rather bureaucratic for  quick visit.

But the good news is that you can visit the shop, cafe and even see a lovely film about the house without paying the entry charge.

The cafe is probably a better refreshment stop for a coast walker than anywhere around the Pier.

One reason for paying an entry fee is to gain access to the current special exhibition Meeting Modernism featuring 20th-century paintings.

There are famous local artists such as Henry Lamb, Eustace Nash and Leslie Ward.

If paying for the exhibition do allow time to enjoy the house too.

The exhibition at the Russell-Cotes continues until Easter time, Monday 24 April.

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Solent Way: Hythe Ferry future uncertain

The future of Hythe Ferry remains uncertain with with Blue Funnel still considering a proposed purchase from White Horse Ferries.

Meanwhile the Hythe Pier Train & Ferry Action Group is hopeful that a solution can be found even if the community has to run the service as well as look after the pier.

The ferry is a vital link on the Solent Way coast path running east from Milford on Sea via Lymington.

The one-way ferry ticket is expected to rise from £5.50 to £6 according to a report in today’s New Milton Advertiser & Lymington Times.

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Hordle Cliff closure date

The coast path between Becton Bunny, east of Barton-on-Sea, and Milford-on-Sea clifftop remains closed.

In addition, the inland path to and from Taddiford Gap has also been closed.

The closure order has been made on safety grounds following cliff erosion and is due to stay in force until 28 April which is shortly after the Easter weekend.

Walking along the B3058 Cliff Road is not recommended.

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New cafe at Milford-on-Sea

A new cafe has opened on the green in Milford-on-Sea.

The maybe confusing name of Hurst on the Hill is the result of the venture being run by former Hurst Castle keeper Jason Crane and former castle chefs Jesse Wells and Alex Cummings.

Jason’s grandfather was an earlier keeper and his uncle was lighthouse keeper.

The new venture claims to be a cafe with realistic prices. Sadly not yet open at teatime but obviously a possible stop for breakfast or lunch.

Hurst on the Hill is next to the butcher at 4 Church Hill SO41 0QH; open daily 9am-4.30pm.

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High buildings plan for Sandbanks

Poole Harbour will have a twenty storey block of flats at its entrance if a planning application is successful.

The proposal to replace the Haven Hotel next to Sandbanks Ferry by the tower block is being submitted to Poole Council early next year.

The Haven Hotel, which is now owned by FJB Hotels, dates from 1887. Twelve years later Guglielmo Marconi transmitted some of the first wireless messages from the building.

FJB Hotels also wishes to redevelop the nearby Sandbanks Hotel just below Poole Head and at the start of the Sandbanks peninsula.

The images published in the Bournemouth Daily Echo suggest that the proposed replacement building would look like London’s City Hall.

The Sandbanks Hotel at present incorporates the late 19th-century Sand Acres which was the beach house of Edwina Mountbatten’s grandfather Sir Ernest Cassel.

Building was slow in Victorian times due to a fear that the sea might break through the sandbank. This year’s flooding in Shore Road is a reminder of the rising sea level which could leave Sandbanks under water sometime in the next century. Sea defences are already being abandoned at Studland.

The two planned buildings, both by architect Bradley Cheer of ARC Architects at Christchurch, will raise questions about a precedent for taller buildings on the coast and the impact on views from Poole Bay, Poole Harbour, Studland and Shell Bay.




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