Mia and I took an early hop on hop off bus at the Wareham Post office stop going towards Swanage and stopped at the Corfe castle village first.
The remains of the castle whose construction is said to have been initiated during the reign of William the conqueror in 1086 (later destroyed in 1646 by Parliamentary forces during the Civil War) were to be seen from wherever we were standing and despite the fact that we wouldn't have time to visit its huge area it was nevertheless an interesting stop.
Historically speaking it is believed that William the Conqueror exchanged the mound of Corfe and land around it for the Church of Gillingham in North Dorset. The village of Corfe was probably a work camp with cob or wattle and daub houses surrounding the square and thus creating a bustling hub.
I found out some rather interesting piece of information regarding the past and present activities in this area
- In the 18th century, smugglers are said to have carried contraband such as fine French brandy and ladies' silk gloves across the common on their way from the Purbeck coast to London.
- Some villagers still hold "Common Rights" nowadays and graze their cows or horses on the common for a null fee.
We walked into the snail staircase of the Parish church of Saint Edward King and Martyr, which was the only open access, but were soon stoped by some village community members who were actually gathering inside. I'll have to try to find out more about this church and maybe visit it some other time, because it looked interesting.
We still had time to visit a small Museum displaying rather interesting artefacts from the past.
We had to wait for a further ten minutes for the bus once our stroll around the village was finished. Swanage would be our next stop and we were looking forward to it, particularly because the weather was quite warm and that would certainly make a difference in regards to the hill paths we wanted to follow.
(To be continued)