Dorset Faith and Enterprise
in the New World
Take a tour off the beaten track to uncover the founding links between rural Dorset and the early settlements of North America. Your guide will take you to forgotten corners of the county to discover how faith and enterprise led many committed pioneers from Dorset to follow the inspiring example of the Pilgrim Fathers and forge new beginnings in the New World.
On this tour you could:
Have a full day tour led by your very own local Blue Badge Guide with private transport.
Have a guided visit to Sherborne Castle, built by Sir Walter Raleigh, who founded Roanoke, named Virginia in honour of his Queen and is reputed to have brought potatoes and tobacco back from the New World.
Explore one of the most beautiful villages in England to discover evidence of the Washington and Churchill families and a remarkable chalk hill figure that may be a Puritan! We travel off the beaten track to find a quiet country church and debate the origins of the Stars and Stripes and we track numerous place names that were carried with the settlers.
Uncover the Dorset links with Massachusetts in the ancient town of Dorchester and visit the County Museum to learn of the Puritan preacher who inspired many families to seek religious freedom across the Atlantic and find later pioneers who extended the English colonies westwards and northwards.
In Weymouth we contrast the story of the pilgrims who departed here in the 1620s with the pleasures and health regimes enjoyed by George III whilst recovering from the loss of the American colonies. We visit the little port where the Puritan ships embarked and admire the glorious Georgian esplanade built to accommodate the royal family and their entourage in the 18th century.
Enjoy time to sample local Dorset food in a traditional pub or restaurant.
Other options for the day
Minterne House and Gardens – a private visit to discover the family home links with the war of 1812 and the Churchill family.
Poole Old Town and Harbour – Discover the later links between Newfoundland, the cod banks and the wealthy port of Poole
Lyme Regis and Whitchurch Canonicorum – uncover the links between Dorset, the discovery of Bermuda, Shakespeare’s ’The Tempest’ and a privateer.