Having been lost in the loneliness above Ringstead Bay, it was with some relief that we found the coast again. Desperately behind schedule, we marched off through Osmington Mills and on to Weymouth. At Osmington Mills we passed by the Smuggler’s Inn.
Emmanuel Charles was the landlord of the inn in the 1840’s; he was also the ringleader of one of the most notorious local smuggling rings in the area. HM Customs recorded that within his extended family there were at least 27 convicted smugglers. Charles himself is said to have made a significant amount of money through his smuggling operations, although by 1851 he had lost it all and he died in poverty.
We strode on, eventually reaching Bowleaze Cove at the very far eastern point of Weymouth Bay. The artist John Constable came here on his honeymoon in October 1816. He the view from here and his picture now hangs in the National Gallery.
Fantasy Island Fun Park suggested that all sorts of thrills and fun could be found here. The two solitary figures huddled underneath its walls with their ineffectual windbreak suggested otherwise! Perhaps it was a bit early in the morning.
We had visited here in 2011, so would not be stopping again today. Originally built in 1860-1872 to defend Portland Harbour, like so many forts it never actually saw any action. It was abandoned in the 1950’s and is now a museum.
Points on this part of the walk (copy and paste the co-ordinates into Google Earth):
- Smugglers Inn, Osmington Mills: N 50° 38.085 W 002° 22.506
- Bowleaze Cove: N 50° 38.175 W 002° 25.280
- Nothe Fort: N 50° 36.450 W 002° 26.625
Walk #81 Statistics (of which this post forms the second part):
- Date of Walk: 9 June 2015
- Walk #81 total distance covered: 15.29 miles
- Coast of Britain Walk Total Distance Covered: 694.06 miles
- CLICK HERE FOR LINK TO INTERACTIVE MAP!!!