DDCAG are undertaking a research project on Signal Stations in Dorset, from Roman to Saxon, Armada to Napoleonic and Naval stations. .
These sites are often shown on maps as ‘beacons’ or ‘telegraphs’.
For example there is a telegraph station shown near Minterne Magna with possible locations at Chilcombe Hill, Winterborne Steepleton and various locations associated with coastal defences in the Napoleonic period.
The process will involve naming the sites, locating their position using grid references, possible start and end of use, the height of the Station, method of communication (smoke, semaphore, mirror etc), visible remains, any record in literature and a general description. For example:
Black Down Fortlet /possible signal station, 50.69077, -2.56303, possible Roman AD 43, 400, height not known perhaps 5m, possible smoke fire, no visible remains, site excavated by Bill Putnam (ref xx, 1970) , (Ian Hewitt ref zz, 2016) and surveyed by Dorset Diggers (ref xxyy).
We have volunteers who will be working on areas – Weymouth, Portland and Purbeck; Sturminster Newton, Blandford Forum and Shaftsbury; Bridport to Lyme Regis; Poole and hte east; Axminster, Chard, Crewkerne, Yeovil, Sherborne and Beaminster.
We are looking to have visits to the sites that have been confirmed as Stations as well as visiting the Royal Signals Museum in Blandford.
If anyone would like to help out please contact us.