Lifestyle & Local Area
Poole is arguably one of the most exclusive and exciting places to live on the south coast, being the second largest natural harbour in the world.
These waters are famous for year-round sports including windsurfing, water skiing, jet skiing, kite surfing, sailing and swimming and attract visitors to its shores all year round.The Dorset Area is renowed for its naturally mild climate and award-winning beaches. In addition to sailing and other water sports there is excellent walking, cycling and horse riding. The Jurassic Coast is England’s first Natural World Heritage site, which provides some of the most dramatic scenery.
This can be accessed via the Sandbanks car ferry linking Poole to the popular ‘blue flag’ beaches at Shell Bay, Studland, Swanage and the Isle of Purbeck. There are also a number of golf courses in the area and of particular note is the well-renowned Parkstone Golf Club (3 miles) Poole Centre is 2 miles away and offers restaurants, pubs, a full range of shops and amenities.
Poole is not only popular for its harbour and water activities, the nearby exclusive “Park Life” is the alternative and just as popular option for existing and new residents alike.
The special interest of Branksome Park is derived from a number of characteristics which combine to form a unique and cherished area within the Borough of Poole. Branksome Park Conservation Area is a place with distinctive and special qualities which are desirable to preserve or enhance. Its spacious sylvan character is derived from its division into large building plots in the 19th century by the Bury family. The Bury family’s influence together with the historic covenants they imposed on the sale of their land have significantly influenced the appearance of the area we see today. The road layout, dense evergreen hedges, turf embankments and generous wooded plots all date from the original plan. Branksome Park is distinct from the surrounding urban landscape being noticeably lower in density and heavily wooded. These spatial qualities create a peaceful residential setting and give the impression of an almost rural character and sense of isolation from the rest of the town. The predominance of woodland also contributes a dynamic quality to the area, which is reflected in the changing seasons. One and two storey detached houses appear to nestle within woodland clearings and are often only glimpsed from the road. Trees and vegetation dominate the streetscape to the extent that, in views along many roads, few buildings are clearly visible. The varied architecture within the Park is a testament to its gradual development over more than 100 years. The buildings reflect the various architectural fashions of the time. Many houses
are oriented at quirky angles within their plots which is a significant local characteristic. While most buildings are unlisted many are attractive homes and their architecture enhances the appearance of the area.“I shan’t tell you where all the lovely places are: I want them all to myself. But I’ll tell you where to look. Are you…anxious for a little sea air but not too much? Do you like what the guidebooks call a ‘salubrious climate’ and a ‘respectable residential neighbourhood? Then go to…the exclusive Branksome. Here the pine trees and rhododendrons and heather are allowed to grow beside twisting roads-steep climbs for him who pushes a bath chair and houses hide respectfully among the foliage of their spacious gardens. Whether it is the terebinthinate sap or the mixture of ozone and resin, I don’t know but (it) is said to be just the place for the lungs and bronchial tubes.”
John Betjeman “Seaview”, BBC West of England Programme, 11 May 1938, reprinted in Stephen Games, Trains and Buttered Toast, 2006
Branksome Park – Surrounding Areas
Branksome Park is surrounded by an abundance of local attractions, areas of interest and places to visit including:-
- Brownsea Island: a short boat ride from Poole to this idyllic National Trust owned island with its own Peacocks and rare red squirrel population – great for family days out and picnics
- Poole Quay & Marina – public moorings, trendy bars, fine dining restaurants, traditional eateries and old English maritime pubs
- Branksome Beach and Chine: spectacular walks through to the award winning Sandbanks beaches
- Poole Park: boating lake, tennis courts, bowling greens, children’s indoor and outdoor play areas, swans, geese, picnic areas, restaurants, café and even a small ice rink
- Whitecliff: boat moorings, large green expanse for walking/dog walking, ball games, riding bikes, fabulous childrens play park, picnic areas
- Evening Hill: uninterrupted views across Sandbanks, Poole and beyond
- Salterns Marina: hotel, chandlery, bar, restaurant
- North Haven Yacht Club: floating moorings, clubhouse
- Haven Hotel: restaurant, superb rooms with balcony views towards Swanage, Studland and The Purbecks
- Royal Motor Yacht Club: accommodation, private clubhouse and private slipway
- Swanage/Studland/Purbecks/Corfe Castle: traditional village shops, cafes, walking and cycling routes, stunning beaches
- Old Harry Rocks: admire and sail around these famous giant rocks emerging from the sea
- Parkstone Golf Club: members club, top class greens and fairways
- Canford Cliffs Village: shops, cafes, banks, restaurants and deli
- Compton Acres Gardens: restaurant, tea rooms, beautiful gardens to admire
- New Forest (National Park): walker’s paradise with picnic areas, acres of beautiful protected countryside inhabited by the Forest’s own ponies and huge range of wildlife
- Branksome Park Tennis & Bowling Club.
What the Papers Say…
Society Magazine extract – June 2013 – “Set Sail Along the Dorset Coast”
The enchanted coastline along our shores is home to a range of picturesque spots to visit.
You could choose to go eastwards towards Christchurch, Mudeford Spit, and the Solent, with numerous harbours, sandy creeks and inlays to explore, or go westwards to Poole Harbour, Sandbanks, Swanage, Weymouth and beyond, following the spectacular craggy Jurassic Coast.
The Dorset coast has many areas that are important for wildlife and birds and various beaches are owned by the National Trust. Along the coast there is a choice of stunning beaches to visit by foot, or take in the views out on the open water.
Weymouth and Portland is famed for its excellent Olympic sailing facilities. Indeed, Dorset is a hot spot for boating enthusiasts, so where can you venture to? Here are some of the best places on the map.
Sights to see:-
Studland: Studland’s sandy beaches (Shell Bay, Knoll Beach, Middle Beach and South Beach) are owned by and managed by the N ational Trust. Shell Bay is the start of the 630 mile south west coast path national trail. Old Harry Rocks near South Beach mark the end of the Jurassic Coast. There is a naturist area on Knoll Beach and swimming-only zones are found in the summer at Knoll and South beaches. Watersport hire is available and there is a designated are for kite surfing (permit required). At Middle Beach a slipway is available for use (charge payable). There is a kayak Trail at Middle Beach. The shortest route to get to the beaches from Poole and Bournemouth is via the Sandbanks Ferry. Alternatively, reach Studland with a scenic bike ride.
Swanage: Home to a glorious sand beach with all the facilities of a seaside town – owned and managed by Swanage town council. Various watersports, boat trips and boat hire are available. The Steam Railway runs between Norden Park and Ride, Corfe Castle, Harman’s Cross, Herston and Swanage with lots of room for bikes, pushchairs, buckets and spades – visit swanagerailways.co.uk
Weymouth: The area is known for having one of the largest professional charter angling fleets operating out of a British Harbour. There are plenty of launching areas should you choose to bring your own boat. Chesil Beach is a popular spot for shore anglers of all abilities.
Lulworth Cove: Lulworth Cove is part of the Lulworth Estate. A shingle beach is locatedin West Lulworth. The Cove offers a variety of places to eat and there is a large car park (charge payable). Boat trips and guided kayak tours are available at certain times of the year.
Hengistbury Head/Mudeford: The historic scenic headland divides Poole Bay from Christchurch Bay. Walk to the top of the headland for sweeping views of the coastline. You can event take the Noddy train if the picnic gear is too heavy.
National Trust’s Brownsea Island: Only a short boat ride from Poole Quay or Sandbanks, the island has woods, heath, fields, cliffs, beaches, and views across the harbour to p Purbeck. Private boats cannot moor here.
Ballard Down & Nine Barrow Down – Dorset Walks (Extract: Dorset Walks)
Just a stone’s throw from bustling Swanage there are some surprisingly remote farmsteads, footpaths which are more like sheep tracks, where few people wander, and outstanding views.
….. the ‘underhill’ paths below Ballard Down afford fine views over Swanage and Langton Matravers to Kingston Ridge, and Nine Barrow Down has panoramic views over Poole Harbour and long Corfe Ridge before you return through farms and along bluebell-lined paths.
Daily Mail – 50 Best Beaches
Who needs a Mediterranean holiday this summer when Britain is basking in a heatwave? Here, we pick the nation’s best 50 beaches
By Frank Barrett, Mail on Sunday Travel Editor
PUBLISHED: 20:55, 6 July 2013 |
According to forecasters, Britain has just embarked on a long-awaited heatwave – finally banishing an interminable period of awful weather. There’s only one place the British want to be when the sun breaks through – and to help you make the very most of being beside the sea this summer, we’ve produced this indispensable guide to Britain’s 50 best beaches, along with information on the country’s best piers, seaside pubs and restaurants and, of course, fish and chips.
2 Studland Beach, Dorset
This picturesque four-mile stretch of golden sand is near the Poole Harbour starting point of the South West coastal path (incredibly it terminates 630 miles away in Minehead). So this is the perfect place to combine a beach visit with a good walk: you can choose everything from a short sandy stroll to a day’s hike. The nearby heathland – which appears in Hardy’s Wessex novels as Egdon Heath – is brimming with wildlife and offers more walking opportunities. At this time of year the barbecue-friendly, perfect for picnics Dorset beach comes alive, with many taking to the seas in boats available to hire.
One of Bournemouth’s attractions is that the town overlooks seven miles of golden sand, providing arguably one of the best city beaches in the UK. Its soft sand and acres of space mean it is perfect for families who will also welcome the fact it has won awards for cleanliness. On a clear day you can see the Needles on the Isle of Wight. Not a deserted paradise, but you can’t ask for much more so close to a major town.
Communications are good, with the M27 and M3 motorway providing easy access to and from London. There is also regular train services from nearby Poole and Bournemouth Stations.
International travel is also in close proximity via Bournemouth and Southampton International Airports, where helicopters can be landed.
Regular ferry services also connect the Poole area to the Channel Islands and to Cherbourg, France.
FAMOUS INHABITANTS OF DORSET