Dry Stone Walling in Dorset

A team of volunteers has employed the traditional skill of dry stone walling to rebuild a crumbling section of old dry stone wall that runs along the cliff edge at Durlston National Nature Reserve in Purbeck in time for spring walks. Led by Dorset Countryside Ranger service’s Coastal Ranger Team, with support from staff at Durlston Country Park, the team has worked hard to enhance visitor experience on this popular stretch of the South West Coast Path and to improve safety for local walkers and residents alike.

In addition, five stone way-markers carved by locally skilled masons using Purbeck stone have replaced old wooden stobs to sign the trail. Work has also been carried out to alleviate drainage problems on a difficult stretch of the path between Tilly Whim Caves and the lighthouse at Anvil Point, to make the path less slippery for walkers.

Steve Church, from the South West Coast Path Association, says: “We are delighted to help fund this project. We know how locally distinctive features along the way add to the character
and attractiveness of the route, so this project which combines improvements to the path
surface with renovating traditional local stone walls and providing local stone signing is a superb use of our funds.

“I am sure our members will be happy to see how their subscriptions have gone towards these works, which are not only practical improvements but also promote the area’s historical distinctiveness.”

Jenny Penney, Purbeck Coastal Ranger, adds: “The support from the South West Coast Path Association has enabled this fantastic learning experience for local volunteers. It also contributes to the enhanced Durlston National Nature Reserve experience attracting more people to walk this magnificent trail.”


Published on: April 20, 2012