On the hill part 1: South and central


Home (contents) Miscellaneous On the hill part 1: South and central

On the hill part 1: South and central

This page follows Miscellaneous photos, home 2. It is about St. Catherine’s Hill, Christchurch, Dorset, England.

Satellite view of St. Catherine's Hill, Christchurch, Dorset, UK

Satellite view via Google Maps

The darker green patch to the northwest of my light blue text St. Cath’s Hill, across the A338 ‘spur road’, is also a part of the hill, or it was before that road cut through it. Its northwest side overlooks the airport. It is labelled Ramsdown Hill in Google Maps (although not in this screenshot).

South

Houses low on St. Catherine's hill, Christchurch, Dorset

Houses low on the hill in November 2020

The hill has two parts; north and south, divided by the A338 ‘spur road.’ These photos were all taken on the south hill, nearest Christchurch. The south I refer to in the subtitle means roughly the southern-most part of the south hill.


Satellite view of St. Catherine's Hill, Christchurch, Dorset, UK

Satellite view zoomed in

The main path, which seems to be labelled St. Catherine’s Hill Lane, starts at Fairmile Road just left of the G in Google at the bottom and proceeds almost directly north. It disappears under trees in this image just north of the roughly hexagonal patch.

Main path up St. Catherine's Hill, Christchurch, Dorset, England, in May 2020

Main path up in May 2020

Morning light on trees, St. Catherine's Hill, Christchurch, Dorset

Morning light in November 2020

Autumn gold, St. Catherine's Hill, Christchurch, Dorset

Autumn gold in November 2020


Gates on main track up St. Catherine's Hill, Christchurch, Dorset, England

Gates

Instead of proceeding up the main track past the gate toward the top, trudge up the sloping wooded area between the main path and the smaller track at left about in line with the flag pole, just a few metres. Stop, turn around, and time-travel back a century…

Cropped and leveled photo of New Zealand army engineers constructing a narrow-gauge railway on St. Catherine's Hill, Christchurch, Hampshire, in 1918 by Thomas Frederick Scales

New Zealand army engineers constructing a narrow-gauge railway on St. Catherine’s Hill in 1918. Photo by Thomas Frederick Scales.


See New Zealand army engineers on the hill, 1918 for more.


Beach huts on the sand bar off Hengistbury Head shimmering in the haze viewed from St. Catherine's Hill, Christchurch, Dorset, England, in May 2020

Beach huts on the sand bar off Hengistbury Head shimmering in the haze in May 2020

I took these photos with my Fuji HS50EXR zoom camera from the triangulation point at the top of the main path (branching a few yards/metres to the right).


Beach huts and boats off Hengistbury Head viewed from St. Catherine's Hill, Christchurch, Dorset, England, in May 2020

Beach huts and boats in May 2020

These two photos are zoomed in equivalents of the preceding (taken on a different day).

Beach huts on the sand bar off Hengistbury Head shimmering in the haze viewed from St. Catherine's Hill, Christchurch, Dorset, England, in May 2020

Beach huts in May 2020

Isle of Wight viewed from St. Catherine's Hill, Christchurch, Dorset, England, in May 2020

Isle of Wight in May 2020


Priory and Hengistbury Head  viewed from St. Catherine's Hill, Christchurch, Dorset, England, in May 2020

Priory and Hengistbury Head in May 2020

For a closer look at the church on Millhams Street whose spire protrudes from behind the Travelodge to the left of the priory tower, see Christchurch: Bargates, High Street, and Castle Street. (That page also includes the priory and its surrounds, as does Christchurch: Quay and Church Street.)

Central

Graffiti on concrete water container, St. Catherine's Hill, Christchurch, Dorset, England, in May 2020

American graffiti in May 2020

The murals decorate a cylindrical concrete water container with a domed top.

Graffiti on concrete water container, St. Catherine's Hill, Christchurch, Dorset, England, in May 2020

Closer


Green and purple mural on St. Catherine's hill, Christchurch, Dorset

Heathland green and purple in November 2020

I happened on the artist painting this one. He said its green and purple theme represents heather, which covers much of the east slope of the hill.

Mural in silver paint on St. Catherine's hill, Christchurch, Dorset

Metallica

Blue mural on St. Catherine's hill, Christchurch, Dorset

Bisected by November sunlight


Mural on St. Catherine's hill, Christchurch, Dorset

Older rectangular water tower

An older rectangular water tower (not really a tower though) is immediately to the south of the circular one with a domed top.

Mural on St. Catherine's hill, Christchurch, Dorset

Hidden entrance

Mural on St. Catherine's hill, Christchurch, Dorset

Yellow and red


Satellite view of St. Catherine's Hill, Christchurch, Dorset, UK

Satellite view of central part of the south hill

The track labelled Dudmoor Ln is the old Ringwood railway line that runs close to the base of the east side of the hill. More about that in part 2.

Disused quarry on St. Catherine's Hill, Christchurch, Dorset

Disused quarry in November 2020

Sandstone overhang in disused quarry on St. Catherine's Hill, Christchurch, Dorset

Sammy Miller’s drop

Sandstone overhang in disused quarry on St. Catherine's Hill, Christchurch, Dorset

Another view

See how the place has become crowded with plants over a half century…

Sammy Miller on a Bultaco Sherpa in about 1971

Sammy Miller in about 1971. Photo from either ‘Motor Cycle’ or ‘Motor Cycle News’. (I hope they don’t mind me using it!)


Disused quarry on St. Catherine's Hill, Christchurch, Dorset

From the other side in November 2020

When I first came here in the 1960s, there was a rusting crane and corrugated iron shack at the edge of the pit just to the left of this view. This sand and clay pit was a great biking area — bearing in mind that we used ordinary road bicycles with the fenders removed. Sammy Miller’s drop is visible through the trees/bushes on the right.


Trials bike ascending a sandstone overhang in about 1972

Richard J ascends a sandstone overhang on his Bultaco in about 1972 to exactly the point from which I took the preceding photo

See Off-road bikes for more.

Sunlit trees on St. Catherine's Hill, Christchurch, Dorset, England, in May 2020

Evening light in May 2020

Related

This topic continues in On the hill part 2: North, east, and west.

Scenery in Miscellaneous photos.

External link

Britain from Above

3 Responses to On the hill part 1: South and central

  1. Roly Lewis-Evans says:

    Thoroughly enjoyed the read Everard. Absolutely amazing history.
    Also the Sammy Miller drop and picture too.
    Would really enjoy taking a hike up there with you when we can.
    Always wanted to see where your early flights were done with the Skyhook.
    You are a brilliant researcher and all this saved information will be a superb resource for the future.
    Thanks for sharing.

    • Thanks Roly. We definitely should do the hill tour. Maybe nail a ‘blue plaque’ to Sammy Miller’s drop and also one on the east slope where I flew my hang glider — to add to all the other signs on the hill these days!

      Readers might be interested to know that Roly made the sail of the black hang glider with red tips in the photo earlier on this page.

  2. Roly Lewis-Evans says:

    Sounds like a plan. You were two pioneers in different sports.
    Will look forward to that Everard. Hopefully in better weather.

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