This 90-minute walking tour takes you on a journey of 12000 years, from the beginning of occupation by Mesolithic Hunter-gatherers, through the Neolithic settlement of the area and the building of the great Hill Forts of the Bronze and Iron Age.
The many invasions during the past Centuries are covered, from the Roman Empire in 43AD, to the Saxon Hordes and the creation of the Kingdom of Wessex, and the raids of the Vikings throughout the 8th to 11th Centuries, culminating in Norman occupation from 1066!
The Medieval history includes the arrival of disease and pestilence in the local port, with the infamous “Black Death” in July 1348, and some interesting new understandings about its spread and effect on the population of these Islands.
The importance of trade and the maritime history are explained, and how the twin towns of Melcombe Regis and Weymouth were granted Royal Charters, and how, in Tudor times, this part of England was vital in defending our shores from the Spanish Armada of 1588.
The English Civil War was to bring about much destruction in the 17th Century, and one of the largest battles were fought through the streets of the towns during 1645. We briefly cover where the action took place, and explain the outcome of this “forgotten” battle and siege on the outcome of the War.
The fortunes of the twin towns were linked with the Royal Family in Georgian England, and were made famous by King George III, and his family in the late 18th Century. This connection to our Royal Family continued in the Victorian Period, and the construction of military defences were to change the local landscape considerably throughout the 19th and 20th Centuries.