Top Ten Things To Do In Dorchester!
By Beth_Ansell | Tuesday, March 02, 2010, 13:12
The sun is shining! Spirits are on the up and many of us are itching to get outside and enjoy our town, so I’ve come up with the top ten things to do in Dorchester to keep you all suitably occupied. A lot has changed over the ‘stay at home’ winter months you know!
The Bandstand, Borough Gardens
1. Dorchester Music Club: Every other Wednesday, Goldies (The Borough Arms) is alive with local music talents since Katy Boyd started this club for musicians and music lovers alike. Newcomers to the music scene have the chance to show case their new material, and professionals can go along and strut their stuff. The next DMC event will be on 10th March starting at 8pm, beginning with an open mic session and rounding up with the talented singer/guitarist Alex Roberts.
2. Kidz Corner: I’ve heard many of you with children say that Kidz Corner is fantastic, so it definitely deserves its spot in the top ten things to do. The indoor play centre is designed for children aged up to eight and there is also a café for adults to relax in whilst their offspring hurtle around letting off steam. Kidz Corner is located at 7B Poundbury Industrial Estate and is open Monday to Saturday from 10am – 5.30pm and Sunday from 10am – 4.30pm.
3. Plaza Cinema: Our beloved Dorchester cinema has been showing the locals the latest films year after year and is still going strong, but they have big news – 3D is coming to our little town this month! This will be in time for Disney’s ‘Alice In Wonderland’, the new star studded movie out in 3D. Even better, it only costs £4 and there is no extra charge for 3D glasses (although you must return them after the film).
4. Sienna: This restaurant, opened in 2003 by chef Russell Brown and his wife Elena, was recently awarded a Michelin star! This is the first Michelin star to have been awarded in the whole of Dorset in over 20 years, and is one of less than 150 awarded in the UK. Is there really any need to say that the food is fantastic? I have been there myself and I can honestly say I have never had a better meal.
5. Dorchester Town Mill Bakery: Relatively new to Dorchester is this bread shop/café which is located opposite Fat Face. It uses organic flour from local producers, and makes all its cakes and pastries from scratch. A very traditional and enjoyable experience. I had some scones from there a few weeks ago, and now I think I may be addicted.
6. The Borough Gardens: Not exactly new, but I’m sure you’ll all agree that our local park belongs on this list. Particularly if you have no money to spend, ball games, wandering around, taking your kids to the play area, or just chilling out on a blanket are all free pleasures that Borough Gardens provides. I don’t know about the rest of you, but I can’t wait until the bandstand livens up with local musicians. Lets just hope the sun stays out and the air warms up a bit!
7. The Farmers Market: On the first Saturday of every month, there is a farmers market held in Poundbury from 9am until 1pm with around 40 local producers. Organised by Dorset Farmers Markets, the event is held at Brownsword Hall and Pummery Square and is quite an attraction. It’s definitely worth a visit once a month.
8. Cycling: If you enjoy a good old fashioned cycle ride, there are plenty of spots around Dorchester which look phenomenal at this time of year. I’m not a hardcore cyclist, I tend to enjoy the views and fresh air more than the work out! I tend to cycle to Martinstown and back via Maiden Castle (good route for a run or a long walk too). However, for the rest of you who are more adventurous, check this out: Dorchester to Abbotsbury circular cycle route.
9. The Ship: How could I miss out the ‘best pub in Dorchester’? (not my words) A night out in Dorchester would not be the same without The Ship. I like to call it the ‘Mothership’. Of course it’s not the only good place to go in Dorchester, but on a Saturday night most people tend to pass through it on the way to somewhere else for a boogie (if they’re in the dancing mood), then almost always come back to it when everywhere else kicks out. I can’t even begin to describe the atmosphere at 2am. There are often occasions when the entire pub sings in unison to a non-existent backing track. Magical.
10. Going to Town: It sounds obvious, but I’m sure most of you will agree that South Street on a sunny day is definitely worth a stroll. We’ve got quite a few new shops that have opened over the last few months too, including Mobzombie, Ascension, Figure Eight and Joshua’s, to name a few. Although we are soon to say a sad goodbye to one of our oldest shops, Stuart Turner’s tobacconist and confectioners in Tudor Arcade, because its owners plan to retire.
I’m sure you’ll all have plenty to say about my choices for the top ten. Feel free to agree/disagree with me! I’d be interested to know whether you all share my view.