A postcard from Weymouth Harbour

Postcard Series

Peace and quiet in Weymouth Harbour

Always relaxing to watch the boats go by with just the gulls for company

Weymouth Harbour has been a port since Roman times and played a role in many historical events. These included contributing vessels for the Siege of Calais, capture of San Salvador from the Spanish Armada, the English Civil War and D-Day. There is a plaque on the Harbourside denoting the site where Bubonic Plague (The Black Death) is thought to have entered Britain in 1348. Emigrants aboard The Charity founded Weymouth, Massachusetts.

Plaque to Richard Clark (discovering Newfoundland in 1585) and John Endicott (Pilgrim voyage to Salem, Massachusetts, 1628)
Plaque to Richard Clark (discovering Newfoundland in 1585) and John Endicott (Pilgrim voyage to Salem, Massachusetts, 1628)

Fisn and chips, peace and quiet

Today, the Harbour is a quiet and relaxing area to stroll or maybe sit and eat fish and chips while the boats go past. There are several excellent chippies to hand plus numerous fine pubs and restaurants. We especially like The Marlborough for fish and chips. However, Bennett’s is also good, as is Fish and Fritz. We find the gulls are not fussy and like everyone’s chips.

Gull waiting for your chips
Gull waiting for your chips

Benches have been added in recent years along the Eastern side of Weymouth Harbour. They are placed along the raised portion of the old railway platform. This makes for a restful location, above the traffic and bustle of the street. During the recent Covid-19 outbreak, the benches have provided rest, great views and an air of solitude for elderly walkers.

Evacuation of Alderney and Jersey residents commemorated in 1940, next to the ancient memorial to Clark and Endicott, near the Devonshire Buildings
Evacuation of Alderney and Jersey residents commemorated in 1940, next to the ancient memorial to Clark and Endicott, near the Devonshire Buildings

Ferry Trips

The old railway tracks are still there, dating from 1865 (cyclists beware!) The Fish Market has recently been refurbished and is becoming a Mecca for seafood connoisseurs. The Rowboat Ferry crosses the water to the Nothe Fort and Gardens – another haven of peace and quiet. The ferry ride across Weymouth Harbour affords excellent views of the Port from an unusual angle. One may also hire charter fishing boats or water taxis to Portland.

Dunkirk filmed in Weymouth Harbour – 27th/28th July 2016

Dunkirk, the wartime evacuation, heavily involved Weymouth Harbour and the armada of small boats. Therefore, it was appropriate that Dunkirk, the 2017 movie, also featured the port. Today is the second anniversary since filming. The crew were present for a week, during which time they transformed Custom House Quay into a wartime scene, as if by magic.

Dunkirk props

Dunkirk props

The cast included Tom Hardy, Harry Styles, Aneurin Barnard, Cillian Murphy and Kenneth Branagh. Naturally, there were hundreds of young ladies watching the proceedings in the hope of catching a glimpse of Mr Styles! Christopher Nolan directed the movie, which depicted this pivotal moment of the War via 3 perspective stories. The evacuation sequences included several short scenes from the area directly behind Aaran House. In the war, up to 450,000 troops were to use the Harbour again as they set off for the D-Day Landings.

Evacuated troops – film scene