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The Horton Tower, built in 1750
Horton is a village in East Dorset, Englandmarker, situated on the boundary between the chalk downland of Cranborne Chasemarker and the heathland of the New Forestmarker, ten miles north of Poolemarker. The village has a population of 515 (2001). The village has two unusual buildings: the Horton Tower, a five story gothic red brick observatory designed by Humphrey Sturt, and the 18th century Georgian church of St Wolfrida, built on the site of an earlier abbey.

Horton is claimed as the location where James Scott, 1st Duke of Monmouth, was captured after the failed Monmouth Rebellion. Monmouth hid in a ditch under an ash tree disguised as a shepherd but was betrayed by a local woman who, according to legend, later killed herself in remorse.

The village once had a manor house but this was superseded by Crichel Housemarker, a nearby stately home, and the manor decayed and was pulled down. The stables, now converted into the rectory, and a large ornamental lake remain.

External links


  • Pitt-Rivers, Michael, 1968. Dorset. London: Faber & Faber.

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