Kingston Landmarks

A quick tour of some of the landmarks in the parish of Kingston, Dorset

Kingston, being a parish on the Jurassic Coast, is fortunate in having a number of natural landmarks. In this post we highlight just some of those landmarks plus a couple of man-made ones for good measure. For further information, just click on the links provided. We start are journey on the coast on the eastern parish boundary with Worth Matravers and then head in a clockwise direction.

1. Chapman’s Pool

Chapman’s Pool from the air
Photo courtesy of Steve / Wessex Hang Gliding and Paragliding Club 2007

Chapman’s Pool is a delightful cove lying at the foot of the Hill Bottom valley, between St Alban’s Head to the south-east (in the parish of Worth Matravers) and Houns-Tout to the west. At one time a life boat was stationed here and a coastguard station was positioned higher up the valley. We’ll tell you more about those in future posts. Find out more about Chapman’s Pool

Chapman's Pool from the slipway
Chapmans Pool from the slipway
Photo courtesy of Jomega 2002

2. Houns-Tout

Houns-Tout from Egmont Point
Photo courtesy of Treehouse1977

At 140 metres Houns-Tout dominates the western skyline at Chapman’s Pool. In the 19th Century, Lord Eldon’s private carriage drive from Encombe House on the west side of Houns-Tout ran round the face of the cliff and on to Hill Bottom, where it joined the track leading down to Chapmans Pool. Sadly the carriageway was obliterated by a succession of landslides many years ago. Find out more about Houns-Tout

Below Houns-Tout lies Egmont Point, the seaward edge of the Tout itself.

3. Egmont Bight

Egmont Bight
Photo courtesy of Jim Champion 2008

Egmont Bight is the small bay between Houns-Tout and Freshwater Steps. There is a small beach, accessible at low tide, with a stark backdrop of dark grey Kimmeridge shale cliffs. Find out more about Egmont Bight

4. Freshwater Steps

#OnePlaceLandmarks: Freshwater Steps
Waterfall at Freshwater Steps
Photo courtesy of Hardo Müller 2009

The promontory named after the fresh water stream that flows from the Encombe valley and the original steps, now long since gone, that once lead down to the beach. Find out more about Freshwater Steps

5. Eldon Seat

The Eldon Seat was erected in October 1835 on the slope below Swyre Head. It was a favourite spot where Lord Eldon walked with his dog Pincher. Find out more about Eldon Seat 

6. Swyre Head

Swyre Head from the west
Photo courtesy of Michael Day 2015

At 203 metres (682 feet), Swyre Head is the highest point in the Isle of Purbeck. It is a Marilyn, a hill of any height with a drop of 150 metres or more on all sides. Find out more about Swyre Head

7. Golden Bowl

Looking down on the Golden Bowl
Photo courtesy of Roman Hobler 2014

The Golden Bowl is the name given to the lush slopes leading down towards Encombe House and the coast beyond from Swyre Head and the northern ridge. Find out more about the Golden Bowl 

8. Obelisk

The Obelisk on North Hill
Photo courtesy of Michael Day 2015

On North Hill, to the north-east of Encombe HouseLord Eldon erected a 40ft high stone obelisk in 1835 to commemorate his elder brother, Sir William Scott, becoming Baron Stowell. Find out more about the Obelisk


Published to coincide with the Society for One-Place Studies January 2021 #OnePlaceLandmarks blogging challenge. Please note there are other prominent man-made landmarks that we will cover at a later date!

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