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Hardy's Birthplace Project

The Hardy's Birthplace Project is a partnership between Dorset Council and the National Trust.

Hardy's Birthplace

Thomas Hardy was born in June 1840 in Higher Bockhampton. The National Trust-owned cottage and surrounding heath and woodland of Thorncombe Wood and Black Heath, owned by Dorset Council, were Hardy's childhood playground and formed the centre of Hardy's poetic universe. 

About the Project

The biggest outcome of the project was the creation of the Visitor Centre with facilities, a welcome point, interpretation and refreshments. The project was procured and project managed by the councils Dorset Property Team. The project has meant improved car parking, cycle links and local communications between Dorset Council and National Trust. 

Community involvement

​The project invites everyone from the community to experience this area in new and exciting ways. There are opportunities for school groups to take part in Forest School and heritage enthusiasts to explore more about the Victorian way of life. 

Public events and opportunities for volunteers are a major factor in the project's outcomes as is the legacy of the Outreach work delivered by the Rangers to encourage those who would not normally be involved in the site to be part of its care and maintenance. 

Supporting the Project

To find out more about the organisations who continue to support the project and are working to put Hardy's Birthplace and Hardy Country on the map, please follow the links below:

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