Walk - Burton Bradstock
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The walk starts from Burton Beach Car Park overlooking Burton Hive Beach and Lyme Bay.
- Walk west from here following the Coast Path towards Burton Freshwater, taking you up on to the clifftop past the Burton Cliff Hotel on your right.
Views stretch across the Jurrassic Coast from the Isle of Portland to the east and Lyme Regis to the west with the distant outline of the famous Cobb, the town's famous 16th century harbour defence.
On a clear day the distinctive red undercliffs of Budleigh Salterton can also be seen west of Lyme.
Burton Cliff is rich in wildlife boasting stonechats, skylarks and the occasional sightings of peregrine falcons hunting for their prey. Sea pinks and bird foot trefoil can be found growing in sunny spots, which attract a variety of butterflies. If you are really lucky you may catch a glimpse of bottlenose dolphins crossing Lyme Bay.
The geology of Burton Cliff consists of Bridport Sand, which was formed about 180 million years ago at the front of a giant delta that fanned into the sea in Jurassic times. Capping the cliffs is a limestone called “Inferior Oolite” that forms in a calcium-rich sea and consists of sand particles and shell fragments. These appear as the golden yellow undercliffs we see today, which are full of fossils. This stone has been quarried in the past, and was used to build many of the cottages in Burton Bradstock.
- Follow the Coast Path, as it heads inland towards Burton Freshwater Holiday Park, cross over a stile, keeping the River Bride on your left. When the Coast Path crosses the river, continue straight on to head back towards the village of Burton Bradstock.
The concrete ruins in the field are believed to be the remains of defences used in the Second World War. Like many Dorset villages, Burton Bradstock was directly affected by the war. This was not just due to the possibility of invasion, but because it played host to thousands of American and Canadian troops leading up to the D-Day landings.
- At the end of the footpath continue over the stile next to the field gate and into Southover Lane, which you follow to the main road opposite the garage.
The village itself is largely unspoilt, boasting a 15th century church and many traditional 16th and 17th century thatched cottages. In Saxon times the village was named Bridetona, as recorded in the Domesday book of 1086, meaning “village of the River Bride”. Bradstock came from “Bradenstoke” named after a Wiltshire priory to which the village once belonged. The two names became joined together.
- Pass behind the garage following signs towards Burton Beach, walking behind the Burton Cliff Hotel and across two fields, before returning to the car park.
Refreshments are available from the Hive Café, overlooking Burton Beach at the south of the car park. Cogden Beach and Burton Bradstock East Beach are dog-friendly throughout the year.
The award winning Hive Café located at Burton Hive Beach Car Park; pubs, restaurants and shops in Burton Bradstock Village.
Near to the start/end of the walk in Burton Bradstock the Three Horseshoes is recommended by users of www.doggiepubs.org.uk as serving good food and being dog-friendly.
The Jurrassic Coastlink X53 bus runs every two hours between Bridport and Weymouth and stops in Burton Bradstock. If arriving by bus, the walk can be started from the village by following signs to Burton Beach behind the car garage. For timetable information, zoom in on the interactive map and click on the bus stops, visit Traveline or phone 0871 200 22 33.
Burton Hive Beach Car Park is a National Trust car park and is free of charge between October and March (includes disabled facilities and provision. (Postcode for Sat Navs: DT6 4RF).
Local maps and publications