Bridport Market Town
Bridport Historic Market Town lies approximately one and a half miles inland from the coast of West Bay. The Rivers Simene and Asker join the River Brit at Bridport to continue their journey to the sea. Many of the well known high street shop names can be found here, including banks, supermarkets, chemists and department stores. However, Bridport also has many smaller shops where the unusual or even the unique can be found. Both Bridport town and the surrounding area are arts and crafts orientated, with a bohemian impression. Until the turn of the millennium, West Dorset had been overlooked in favour of East Dorset and East Devon during the surge in property prices. However the area has recently caught up with its coastal neighbours.
At the junction where East Street meets South Street is Bridport Town Hall. It was built in 1786, while the clock tower was a later addition in 1806. The upper story had originally been a court for the borough sessions, a separate room for the grand jury and a council chamber. The passage below the Town Hall and a small square next to it in South Street is called 'Bucky Doo'.
Bridport Arts Centre can be found in South Street by Bucky Doo Square. The building dates back to 1838 when it was a Methodist Chapel. This historic venue has a 200 seat theatre, 3 gallery spaces plus a café and bar. Various theatrical presentations as well as exhibitions are regularly held here. Bridport farmers' market is also a regular venue at the Arts Centre, held on every second Saturday of the month.
Bridport Town Hall
St Mary's Church
Further down South Street is Bridport Museum. One thousand years of Bridport history is recorded here, from the days of Alfred the Great to the Second World War.
One of the main attractions in Bridport is its open street market, held on every Wednesday and Saturday mornings. Antiques and bric-a-brac are often a speciality, so if you're looking for a bargain or something unique, this is the market to 'Trawl the Stalls'.
Bridport Leisure Centre is located at the bottom end of South Street, opposite the supermarket at Brewery Fields (behind Palmers Brewery). Various facilities and activities are available for families, children and individuals. The Leisure Centre is run as a non-profit making Sports Trust.
Other places of interest include:
The Chantry in South Street is thought to be the oldest secular building in Bridport. Evidence of this medieval tower house suggests that it probably originated as a beacon for ships. In 1369 the building was converted into a chantry (a priest's house).
St Mary's Church in South Street. A church has stood on this site since at least the Middle Ages, probably much earlier. The earliest remains date from the 13th Century with many later additions during the 15th Century. Today there is a warm welcome for newcomers to join the congregation in Sunday and midweek services.
The Chapel in the Garden in East Street was built in 1794 originally to follow the faith of 'Unitarian Christianity', but in recent years has moved to 'Free Christianity', the congregation meeting every Sunday morning.
Bridport Arts Centre
Bucky Doo Square
Bridport Leisure Centre