Beaminster is a lovely old market town. It sits at the head of the valley of the River Brit, tucked under hills, deep in the heart of Dorset’s Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, and just six miles north of the Jurassic Coast World Heritage Site.
The whole of the town centre is a conservation area with everything that an old English market town should have: houses built in the local creamy limestone, a picturesque market square with its tiny market house, and a very fine, largely 15th century Church. Beaminster was granted a market charter in 1284 and steadily grew to be a small medieval town, supporting a large rural area. Most of the early buildings were destroyed in fires during the 17th and 18th centuries, but these cleared the way for some fine domestic stone buildings which create a harmonious centre.
With a population of about 3,000, the town has never grown too big. It has the friendly feel of a village and has retained a small range of independent shops which cluster around the centre. It has a small number of good quality restaurants and cafes in addition to the local pubs. The relaxed buzz of the town is particularly noticeable during the highly regarded summer music and arts festival.
The town and its surrounding countryside are a delight to visit.