Important Note: Tramper hire ceased to operate at this location in 2014 and is no longer available. But there are now many more locations to chose from in Dorset - http://countrysidemobility.org/locations/list?county=5
A Tramper can now be hired from the Heights Hotel http://www.heightshotel.com/ on the Isle of Portland near Portland as part of the 'Wild About Weymouth and Portland' project: www.wawap.co.uk.
The island’s quarrying history has shaped the landscape you see today with fascinating archaeological features such as massive dry stone walls known as ‘beaches’, with fossil filled rocks and old horse drawn tramways and associated tunnels, bridges and arches. Hundreds of species of plants and animals are dependent upon the limestone and maritime grasslands found within Portland’s quarries and along the coast, including Portland’s own special Silver- studded blue butterfly. The quarries are some of the best places to see and enjoy Portland’s Jurassic World Heritage Site story with exposures of the Portland and lower Purbeck limestones formed in the late Jurassic, 135 - 145 million years ago. There are also sculptures to find in amongst the landscape and fabulous views of the Jurassic Coast World Heritage site to the east and west along the two Tramper routes available:
Route 1. Tout Quarry Nature Reserve and Sculpture Park: Exploring a short section of the South West Coast on the west coast and Tout Quarry. Tout Quarry, now a Dorset Wildlife Trust Reserve is home to The Portland Sculpture and Quarry Trust which since 1983 has worked with Portland Stone to create over 60 stone carvings scattered throughout the quarry. There are regular stone carving courses you may like to attend.
Route 2. King Barrow Quarry and High Angle Battery: A circular route through King Barrow Quarry (Dorset Wildlife Trust reserve) to join the South West Coast Path on the East Coast and back through the Verne Local Nature Reserve to see the southern ramparts of the massive Verne Citadel built in the Victorian period to defend Portland Harbour, as well the High Angled Battery, a scheduled ancient monument and fine example of Victorian military architecture. You may also like to pop into Fancy Farm, Portland’s Community Farm with Portland sheep and other animals.
The two routes currently being promoted start at the Heights Hotel where there is disabled parking and access to toilets and refreshments. The Tramper Buggy is currently available for bookings on Tuesdays, Fridays and Saturdays between 10.00 am and 16.00pm, and on other occasions by special arrangement if staff or volunteers are available.
Phone 07973 907760 or 01305 228955 or email email: [email protected] for bookings.