• The Dorset County Boundary Survey website
Durotriges

Ashmore, Melbury Abbas

County boundary between Ashmore, Dorset, and Tollard Royal, Wiltshire

Wednesday 8 June 2016, - 10.00am

The plan is thus:

Following a 'reccy' by both John Newbold and Laurence Taylor it is suggested we meet up at 10.00 am sharp at Clubman's Down Car park (as advertised in the DNHAS programme) ST 885187, located on the west side of the B 3081 Shaftesbury/Blandford road on the hill above Compton Abbas and just west of Compton Abbas Airfield.

Here, John, will be giving us a reading from Thomas Hardy's Tess of the D'Ubervilles. Living in Marnhull and seeking employment in Pentridge Tess, he notes, was to walk a considerable length of Dorset's county boundary – see the attached map.

Landshire Lane

Much look forward to learning more about this unique (albeit very sad) literary reference. Also of potential interest here is the naming of our meeting-up place which recalls those 'clubmen' who played a significant part in the Civil War; Dorset was staunchly Royalist .

Tess's family were quite poor living at Marnhull. She was a good looking and hard working girl who sought to help the family whose surname was Durbyfield by seeking employment. By chance a visiting parson led the family to believe that they had more noble ancestors – the d'Urberville's. Locally they lived at Pentridge and she sought employment there. The d'Urburville son abused his position leading to the inevitable bastard child, who subsequently died before being baptised. For this Tess hated the son and he pursued her although she subsequently had a short unhappy marriage to another man. Circumstances dictated that be found Tess working on a horrible farm and he took her away. She subsequently knifed him and was hung some time later at Winchester.

Ashmore, Ashmore
Dorset Boundaries
Index for 1:2500 maps C.1886 of the Dorset (Ashmore) and Wiltshire (Tollard Royal) boundary

Around 10.30 am we will leave for Ashmore and park by the pond ST 913178. This route will take us past Compton Abbas Airfield to North Road where the county boundary passes in a straight line before disappearing into fields.

From Ashmore we will follow a footpath slightly north-east to Tollard Royal where we meet the county boundary at approx. ST 917179.

The footpath heads in a south-east direction through Wiltshire Copse. Which, it may be noted is crossed by the one-time Roman road running north from Vindocladia, Badbury Rings, and then by distinctive linear earthwork.

We can walk south-east as far as is legal but we will need to be back in Ashmore by 3.00 pm at the latest, returning by the same route.

We will then return to Compton Abbas Airfield Cafe for the 'wash-up' meeting, ST 890185. John notes here that the cafe closes at 5.00 pm.

Do join us all for what promises to be another interesting day in yet another very distinctive tract of country along the Dorset border. And once again, do bring a sandwich for an informal picnic lunch – fingers crossed for the weather.

 


Extract maps (400m x 400m) from OS County Series 1st Edition 1:2500 mapping circa 1886 with digitised feature and boundary overlay. Sheet reference based on full easting-northing 100m grid reference to the lower left internal corner
Sheet Description Boundary Dorset Parish Other Parish link KB size date
INDEX Ashmore   Ashmore Tollard Royal, Wiltshire PDF
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318 1886
3913-1192 Ashmore Down, North Road 5ft RH AshmoreTollard Royal, Wiltshire PDF
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214 1886
3913-1188 North Road 5ft RH AshmoreTollard Royal, Wiltshire PDF
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169 1886
3914-1184 North Road 5ft RHAshmoreTollard Royal, Wiltshire PDF
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160 1886
3914-1180 North Road 5ft RH, TBAshmoreTollard Royal, Wiltshire PDF
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222 1886
3915-1176 Ashmore, Nr TB, Def (ex Bank?), 5ft RH AshmoreTollard Royal, Wiltshire PDF
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295 1886
3918-1173 Wiltshire Wood, Hookley Copice Def (ex Bank?), 5ft RH, CRAshmoreTollard Royal, Wiltshire PDF
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598 1886
3922-1172 Wiltshire Wood, Hookley Copice CRAshmoreTollard Royal, Wiltshire PDF
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371 1886
3923-1168 Ditch CR, 5ft RHAshmoreTollard Royal, Wiltshire PDF
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267 1886
3926-1165 Tollard Green 5ft RHAshmoreTollard Royal, Wiltshire PDF
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336 1886
3927-1161 Tollard Green Bottom 5ft RH Ashmore, Tarrant Gunville, FarnhamTollard Royal, Wiltshire PDF
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492 1886
3931-1161 Bussy Stool Lodge 5ft RH Tarrant Gunville, FarnhamTollard Royal, Wiltshire PDF
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529 1886
3933-1165 Farnham Common Wood 5ft RHFarnhamTollard Royal, Wiltshire PDF
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492 1886
- All of the above less index - Ashmore, Tarrant Gunville, Farnham Tollard Royal, Wiltshire PDF
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2,787 1886
Tess
Tess

Tess of the D'Urbervilles

An extract to start the day

Berwick St John map 1807
Sherborne map 2in drawing

Berwick St John - 2in drawing, 1807

The copy in the British Library includes a red pecked line describes the border between the counties of Dorset and Wiltshire. Ashmore lower left.

Compton Abbas Airfield
Stalbridge Arms

Compton Abbas Airfield

For our 'wash up' afterwards we will be meeting up at the Compton Abbas Airfield restaurant, Ashmore, Salisbury SP5 5AP.