Of Historical Note

Of Historical Note

Symonds & Sampson are currently offering 3 properties for sale with links to notable characters or periods in history.

Peter Grout-Smith is offering for sale a delightful cottage in Durngate Street, Dorchester.  Or should I say Casterbridge, as the town was named by Dorchester’s most famous resident Thomas Hardy in his novels.   We understand that the property was once owned by Thomas Hardy who acquired the property for his sister. The celebrated author and poet's signature can be seen on the deeds to the property.

The unusually named but stunning ‘Smoky Hole’, for sale through our Axminster office was originally an old charcoal burners cottage, and nestles amidst Forestry Commission land near Uplyme. The property was once owned by Sidney Peine-Waddington (Pierce), a great friend of composer Ralph Vaughan Williams, and records of correspondence between the two can be found online. I wonder if he ever visited the house, the stunning view could have been the inspiration for one of his masterpieces. 

And finally, step back to Medieval times, and the site of a King’s Court Palace, a medieval royal hunting and entertaining residence on the outskirts of Gillingham.  Stone structures were built by King John (1199 – 1216) and Henry III (1216 – 1272) and it is possible timber buildings were here as early as the reigns of William II (1087 – 1100) followed by Henry I and Henry II.  The rectangle bank and ditch of the moated site are still clearly visible.  The field is part of a block of 75.42 acres offered for sale by Andrew Tuffin of our Sturminster Newton office, and will be of significance interest to historians.

The plaque (photo) at the entrance to the site shows how it may have looked all those years ago.

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