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Grove Road Area

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 covers part of Grove Road and the housing estate on its southern side. To the north of Grove Road used to be extensive quarries and Victorian tourists would travel from London to sit in the upstairs rooms of houses in Grove Road and, for six pence, enjoy tea, cakes and watching the convicts working.

That's probably why there were once no fewer than six pubs in Grove Road.

To the south of Grove Road is one of the most extensive cave systems on the Isle.

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Please click here to view this area on Google Street View.

Another local shop closes and is converted to a house.

With huge rises in the price of houses and the relatively low profits that come with local shops, it is surprising that so many local shops still exist on Portland.

This sad sight was captured in 1989 on the corner of Grove Road and Augusta Road. The second picture shows old shop fully converted to a house in 2004.

In Augusta Road off Grove Road is a terrace of houses obviously more modern than others in the area.

During 'Black Easter' of 1941 three houses in Augusta Road were bombed leaving four dead including a two-year old girl. Baby Rachel Harding was killed by a bomb hit on 14 Augusta Road on 12th April 1941. Please click here to see a picture of Rachel and here to see baby Gerald who survived even though his mother, father, sister and a lodger were killed.

The houses seen here replaced the bombed houses.

THE CLIFTON HOTEL

This was once my local pub when I lived for a year in nearby Rufus Way.

It was a popular pub when the nearby Royal Naval Base was open as it was one of the closest pubs for the scientists and engineers of the Admiralty Underwater Weapons Establishment to visit for lunch.

It achieved national fame in 2007 by reusing unwanted 'umbrella hats' to keep its smoking customers dry, please click here.

A communal water pump outside the Clifton Inn in Grove Road photographed in 1990.

It is a shame to see it rusting away but, if it were renovated, it would certainly be stolen or vandalised.

On a wall outside the Clifton pub is this cartoon; a survivor of a Carnival entry several years ago.

The Grove General Stores and Post Office - as abandoned in 2003.

Another victim of the loss of profitability of small local shops and Post Offices.

Nearby in Grove Road (or "The Grove") is a catholic church of unremarkable architectural interest.

This statue is the only feature of note.

This church closed in 2007 and, at the time of writing, its future was undecided.

About 300 yards to the south-west of the Clifton Inn is the disused Higher Headland Quarry containing the usual rubbish that locals throw into such holes. However, the fame of this quarry lies in the hole seen above the washing machine in this picture taken in 1989.

This is the opening into a huge cave system (Thrutch or Fossil Cave) which extends over 300 feet (100 m) and has been described as very pretty with calcite curtains.

However, by the time of my visit in the Summer of 2003 the cave entrance had been barred off as seen in this picture.

Locally, the reason given is that the authorities were afraid that escaping prisoners might hide in this extensive tunnel.

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