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Dorset Country Houses

8 Aug — 12 Aug 2022 | Tour Director: Charles Hind

ACE Aquileia tour: Basilica of Aquileia


Tour Director

Andrew Wilson portrait

Charles Hind,


architectural historian and Chief Curator and H J Heinz Curator of Drawings at the RIBA

full biography and other tours




Tour assembles 1100 at the Lanes Hotel, West Coker, followed by 1130 at Yeovil Station. Lunch and tour of Minterne House followed by St Andrew’s Church in Minterne Magna, Folke Church and Leweston House and Chapel. Welcome and introduction. Four nights at the Lanes Hotel, West Coker.



Morning: Waterston Manor (Jacobean façades and attractive Arts & Crafts gardens) followed by the monastic church and mansion at Milton Abbey (with lunch in the Abbots’ Hall).  Afternoon: Georgian Blandford Forum (handsome parish church of St Peter & St Paul) followed by St Mary the Virgin Church, Charlton Marshall and St Mary’s Church, Sturminster Newton (rare English stained glass window by Harry Clarke).



Morning: Cerne Abbas Giant viewpoint and the Duchy of Cornwall town of Poundbury (wide range of buildings in traditional styles). Continue to Wolfeton House for lunch and tour.  Afternoon: Mapperton House (home of the Earl and Countess of Sandwich, with outstanding early 20th century gardens).



Morning: Sherborne Abbey followed by gardens at Kingston Maurward House (20th century gardens along the River Frome) and St Mary the Virgin Church, Puddletown.  Afternoon: St Nicholas’s Church, Moreton (Laurence Whistler windows) and Warmwell House (Jacobean manor house). Evening: summary talk.



Morning: Georgian shell house in grounds of Sherborne School followed by Forde Abbey (extensive gardens). Tour disperses approx 1430 at Yeovil Station followed by approx 1500 at the hotel.

Tour Dates

8 Aug — 12 Aug 2022





Tour Code



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"Splendid cross-section of houses and religious buildings chosen to represent the county"
"It was a privilege to see houses not usually open to the public"
ACE customers on a previous Dorset Country Houses tour
"Charles Hind was excellent – erudite, friendly and always ready to chat and discuss what we saw"
ACE customer on a previous tour with Charles Hind


There are limited standard twin rooms, but we are also offering two-bedroomed apartments, with lounge/dining room, outside sitting area and full kitchen facilities, for twin/double use, at a supplement. Please note that some of these apartments have double beds in both rooms, whilst others have a double bed in one room and twin beds in the other room.


A good level of fitness is required for this tour as it involves a moderate amount of walking in and around houses and gardens. Participants must be prepared for uneven ground, steps, stone surfaces that can be slippery if wet and some mildly uphill terrain. Handrails are not always available. The hotel and many of the sites visited do not have lifts. Participants should meet ACE’s usual fitness criteria, as outlined in our Booking Terms & Conditions.

Cost of £1445 includes: acommodation based on sharing a twin or double bedded room, breakfast, five lunches, dinner with water & coffee, excursions & admissions, gratuities.

Not included: travel insurance, double room for single use supplement £200, two-bedroomed apartment for twin/double use supplement £70 per person.