Bettiscombe, a small hamlet which lies on the edge of the Vale of Marshwood, not far from the Devon and Somerset borders.
The surrounding Dorset countryside is unspoilt, with ancient hedgerows, small fields, old wooded areas and farms. There are plenty of footpaths for visitors to explore the lovely countryside and the area is fortunate to be home to a large variety of wildlife. Nearby Pilsdon Pen is Dorset’s second highest hill and from the top, visitors can enjoy amazing views over the landscape.
The village church of St Stephen has a medieval tower with some of the medieval windows being retained when the church was rebuilt in 1862. Those interested in architectural restoration will note Benjamin Grasby’s carving on the Victorian font.
Just a quarter of a mile from the church stands Bettiscombe Manor, probably the most well-known building in the village. According to a local legend, a member of the Pinney family, who owned the manor, returned to England from Nevis in the 17th century, bringing with him a black slave. The slave became ill and said his soul would not rest unless he was buried on Nevis, but this was thought to be too expensive so when he died, the slave was buried in the local churchyard. Screams were heard from the graveyard and bad luck came to the village, so the body was exhumed and moved to the manor. The skull is still in the manor today, and it is known as ‘The House of the Screaming Skull’!
Bettiscombe is an ideal cottage holiday location for exploring this part of Dorset. Bridport, a traditional market town, is just seven miles away. Also close by is the beautiful beach of West Bay and the resort of Lyme Regis is within easy reach, making Bettiscombe handily placed for short trips to the world heritage site of the Jurassic coast.
Come and stay in this lovely part of Dorset; search Bettiscombe holiday cottages today.