Taking a ride on the Jurassic Skyline tower

People like a good view and, as the London Eye proved, and the Eiffel Tower before that, they’re willing to pay for the pleasure.

Weymouth’s Jurassic Skyline was erected in time for the 2012 Olympics and was originally billed as a sailing observation tower, although builders Merlin Entertainments (who run most of the UK’s big theme parks) did say they hoped it would keep bringing people to Weymouth for years to come.

Three years later, the tower has become an established feature of the Weymouth sea front. So what does it have to offer?

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A day out from Weymouth: Lulworth Cove and Durdle Door

Rocks, sea and sky. The Jurassic Coast fuses these three fundamental elements in so many different ways, perhaps nowhere more spectacularly than at Lulworth.

I took a trip to Lulworth just after the August Bank Holiday, to remind myself of what’s there. If, like me, you prefer your seaside served windswept and empty, I recommend a very off-season visit. Summer fills Lulworth with coach parties and crowds, many of them dropping in to tick off having seen another UK landmark.

What is there to see and do at Lulworth Cove and Durdle Door? I’ll do my best to explain.

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Jurassica’s plans for Portland and Weymouth

Did you know that a real Jurassic World is coming to Portland? That’s the ambitious plan driving the Jurassica initiative, an innovative project to convert a disused quarry into a world-class dinosaur-themed experience.

There won’t be any real dinosaurs, of course. And I don’t think T-rex is invited because he wasn’t a Dorset local. Along with ammonites (very Dorset) there will be plenty of sea dwelling dinos including pliosaurs and ichthyosaurs, the massive marine reptiles with scarily large and sharp teeth.

Jurassica, if it happens, promises to be a very exciting place to visit. But there’s no guarantee that it will ever be more than a good idea.

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Where Weymouth meets Portland: Ferry Bridge

Or is that Ferrybridge? The name seems to be used both with and without a space. And you could argue that it’s where Wyke Regis meets Chesil Beach, not a boundary between Weymouth and Portland.

Leaving these minor details aside, Ferry Bridge is a landmark, albeit a minor landmark, that deserves a mention. And despite the name, Ferry Bridge is neither a ferry or a bridge. It’s bigger than that.

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Weymouth and the 2012 Olympic Games

When we house hunting with a view to moving to Weymouth, in 2009, many of the properties boasted their proximity to the Olympic sailing venue. A year later, in 2010, those references to the Games had gone.

This change sums up Weymouth’s relationship with the Games – initial enthusiasm and excitement following by frustration and, for many, a desire to distance themselves for the Olympic circus. Continue reading “Weymouth and the 2012 Olympic Games”