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Hardy's Monument, Dorchester

4.0
The Hardy Monument is a 72ft high monument erected in 1844 by public subscription in memory of Vice Admiral Sir Thomas Hardy, a commander at the Battle of Trafalgar (not to be confused with the author Thomas Hardy, who also has local connections). Admiral Hardy lived in Portesham and his family owned the Portesham estate which stretched from the middle of Portesham to Black Down. The site for the monument was chosen because the Hardy family wanted a monument which could be used as a landmark for shipping. The monument has been shown on navigational charts since 1846 and is visible from a distance of 100 kilometres.The monument is situated on Black Down, a hill overlooking the English Channel near Portesham in Dorset, England. It was restored in 1900 by his descendants and bought in 1938 by the National Trust for the sum of £15.00.The monument was designed to look like a spyglass, as Admiral Hardy would have used on board ship and not as many people think - a factory chimney. Its eight corners are aligned with the compass points. Viewed from the ground the corner to the right of the lightning conductor points due south. The bench mark on the northwest face denotes the height of Black Down at 780 feet (242 metres).From the top of the monument at a height of 850 feet above sea level it is possible to see on a clear day: Start Point, Devon, St. Catherine's Point on the Isle of Wight both of which are 90 kilometres distant and to the North can be seen Pen Hill in the Mendip Hills which is 65 kilometres away.
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Hardy's Monument Reviews
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136 reviews
Google
4.4
TripAdvisor
  • August 7, 2017
    Paul likes a good walk at the weekends, I too enjoy walking but with Paul we are talking all day walks, we generally look for places we can take Ted (our overly enthusiastic pug X griffon terrier) Hav...  more »
  • August 6, 2017
    Was a little hard to find ....Very windy once up there and out of the car. We were early in the day and car park was not open. We parked along the road, it was quiet. The tower itself was locked up. T...  more »
  • July 30, 2017
    I had been aware of this monument for decades but never got around to paying a visit, so on my latest stay in Dorset, and having recently re-read The Trumpet Major, decided to stop off. A breezy day a...  more »
Google
  • The monument can be seen from far and inevitably you are drawn to it. Unfortunately the car park was not open and there were few walks that looked promising. Great views though.
  • Great views on a good day. 121 steps that are spiral and steep. Good size carpark with caravan selling tea and ice cream!
  • East access to car park with our motorhome. Plenty of parking space. Only £1 per hour (pay at meter). Really great retro caravan with teas and cakes and things. Nice area to walk the dog. £2 for entry to the monument, Dont believe the other review about difficulty parking. No petty official and no probs. September 2016
  • Recently renovated car park and the Tower is now open to climb and admire views over Dorset. However, costly if not a National Trust member. , £1 phr parking and £2 to climb tower.
  • On a clear day it is possible to see as far as the Isle of Wight but often sea mist hinders the view from the Monument.. I sometimes go up there late at night because it is free from light pollution there and it is possible to see the Milky Way, meteor showers and sometimes the International Space Station.

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