To the casual observer, Dorchester can seem timeless, whilst other towns in Britain have been irrevocably damaged through bombing and bad planning, Dorchester has retained its character and much of its history. And yet the town and its surroundings have not been immune to change - throughout the twentieth century the march of the motor car, the growth of tourism and the alteration of shopping habits have wrought far-reaching change. Dorchester has remained the county town of Dorset, but it is now a tourist centre in its own right and a base for exploring the nearby coast and countryside, no longer just the market town of an ancient rural landscape as portrayed by Thomas Hardy. Nevertheless the town is still embedded in its history, and many historic features mix with more modern facilities, whilst the outstanding archeology of the area has become increasingly recognised. "Dorchester Century" tells the story of Dorchester and its surrounding area through the tumultuous twentieth century.
It uses over 200 photographs, both old and new, to illustrate the important events, people and places that have had an impact on the town, and which have combined to give Dorchester the appearance it has today.
The Author Steve Wallis was born in Yorkshire but has lived in Dorset for over ten years. He is currently Senior Archaeologist with Dorset County Council