Welcome to my web site which contains maps, stories, history, advice and over 800 photographs to help you explore Portland, Dorset - The Jewel of the Jurassic Coast

South of Church Ope Cove

Portland, Dorset

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All the pictures on this page showing a thick border are thumbnails. Clicking on the picture will produce a larger version. Use your browser BACK button to return to this page.

The above image is copyright Dorset County Council 2000 and is reproduced here with permission.

This area is known as the Southwell Landslips.

The region between the main road and the sea has been subject to extensive quarrying and to landslips which have tilted huge masses of rocks at crazy angles.

This is an interesting part of the coastline to explore and can be reached by following a well-trodden footpath leading south from Church Ope Cove.

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It was from this part of the coastline that much of Portland's raw sewerage poured into the sea. I recall in the early 1970s sitting close by the end of the sewer pipe and watching all manner of disgusting things dropping into the sea - the pipe did not even discharge below the low tide water line.

The sewerage was carried in a pipe from the main road down to the sea in an exposed rusty pipe. 

In the 1990s a huge and expensive scheme was completed which involved taking all Portland's sewerage and pumping it to Weymouth. Many Portlanders considered this an excellent idea in view of the centuries old dislike that Portlanders have felt for Weymouthians!

This is a disused vent pipe which I investigated in 1989 as evidence for the thoroughness of my research into Portland's less pleasant aspects. Above right, I returned in 2004 to check out this stink pipe. Yes, it is still there!

My best friend Sandy also looks but rather more cautiously than me!

A typical view of this part of unstable coastline just south of Church Ope Cove as seen in 1990.

On the left is a deep gully which is impenetrably filled with bushes and brambles. I explored this large hole by throwing stones into it.

Lots returned a metallic 'clang' which suggested that many a Portlander's car has been sent to its grave in this hole.

On the right of the above picture, landslips have tilted the rock formations by about 20 degrees towards the sea.

A better view of the tilted rock slabs that are gradually working their way to the sea.

There is a precarious footpath that runs from the Cheyne car park to join the Public Footpath down to Church Ope Cove. 

Be warned - this is part of that path. It is not for vertigo sufferers.

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