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Poole >  Google™ Map Nov 2017+  Dorset Coat of Arms

pōl Old English (a) pool. Population - 147,645.

England-Dorset Flag UK > England > Dorset

Nov 2017+

Dorset Coat of Arms

Bridport and Poundbury had to be abandoned and Dorchester got just a passing glance. Still, that's heavy rain for you following from Devon into Dorset and is still adding to the levels of, quite literally, Poole.

It's a base for a few days for Brownsea Island and RSPB™ Arne, two places that have twitchers jerking furiously, they say. Not that they'd be seen, SlyBob would be too busy swanning around in Swanage, pottering on the Isle of Portland and refusing to cough up for Corfe Castle for that.

Near Poole - Corfe Castle

That means not that much of Poole will be seen, neither, just a couple of early-evening hours but time enough for England's longest high street and a longing for the high seas, eh?


Just over Poole Bridge, it's just a 10-minute trot to town. At least it would be if the bridge wasn't closed for a couple of months meaning the diversion over the Twin Sails Bridge makes it more like half an hour.

Quite a few accommodation providers in some new-build 'apartments' down by the water and, quite possibly, the neediest one ever. Within 10 minutes of getting the keys, a text arrives... 'Is everything perfect?'

It's certainly modern and well-appointed and everything seems to be as advertised including the private parking although the view from the balcony to Brownsea doesn't mention the back of a boatyard even if it has got a fox in it.

That Glade™ plug-in is also making the eyes water, the heating has had to be knocked right down and let's not even get started on what you're charging for three nights. Well, you did ask.

Poole's largely pedestrianised high street should really be called Long Street and there's some town-centre parking near the top of it.

At just shy of 1km, it's one way to kill an hour in the early evening but, up at the top, the modern Dolphin Shopping Centre could, sorry Poole, just about be anywhere and you can ponder that while you wait for the level crossing to lift, not shown.

Back over the railway line, things are a little more eye-catching, architecture-wise, and the landmark building on Lagland Street was once the local library.

Poole - Caffè Nero
Poole - The Lord Wimborne

Of course it's a Wetherspoon™s now, named after Lord Wimborne, whoever he was, even though, ironically, he and his wife had lobbied for a hospital (3/5).

  The Lord Wimborne (Lagland Street) wetherspoon

The Spoons have a tradition of naming their pubs based on the history of the town or the old building they invariably inhabit. The inevitable offering in a town of this size is called the Lord Wimborne, whoever he was?

Son of a Welsh industrialist with his money forged from iron, Wimborne and his mother funded the creation of the local library. This after having originally lobbied for a hospital, an irony not lost on many Spoons' staff at last orders.

There are no awards for their nearly-out-of-date ale but the Director of Contrived Waterhole Naming gets a tame (2/5) for a toff who just ended up residing in Dorset.

This all leads to a stretch back in, sorry again Poole, you-could-just-about-be-anywhere-territory but highlights include a good ol' hardware store that's family-run, probably.

Poole - W E Boone

Bob loves these places and could easily spend an hour inside. It's thought to be the smell, which is that of grandad's shed, although there's often an obligation to buy a small bag of screws or some shoelaces.

Today, it was a pack of cheap batteries that weren't really needed.

  Butler & Hops (88 High Street)

Not quite as crafty as their branding suggests and a little bit rough around the edges. Still, they're a friendly bunch and SlyBob the first Geordies they've heard since Gazza had his pals down for a housewarming.

It's not until a street called Old Orchard that there's any sense of the old town. This is where the Georgian mansions replaced the medieval as Poole prospered as a port in the 1700s.

Poole - High Street

It's also home to some of Poole's fancier sustenance providers but only if Zizzi™s is your benchmark.

This, in turn, leads down to the quay and is where you would have arrived if that bridge hadn't been closed. Here you'll find a modern re-imagining of the mercantile alongside the boat trips to Brownsea Island and beyond.

Poole Quay - The Jolly Sailor
Poole Quay

Poole suddenly appears to be really, rather pleasant.

Maybe the bridge diversion means that first impressions have been skewed with no real evidence, so far, of any of the imagined wealth.

Poole Quay - Dolphin Quays

The prices of these cardboard apartments have plummeted since they were built in 2004 so this isn't one of the nine of the 10 most expensive addresses in Dorset that happen to be in Poole.

When it's said 'plummeted', it's still slightly south of £1m for a penthouse view of the natural harbour that named that toon.

That property-price fact is something else that's skewed, skewed by the fact they're all at Sandbanks.

Poole Quay - Looking at Sandbanks

There lies a beyond-exclusive development on a spit, two-and-a-half miles to the south-east, and can just about be seen in the background of this dusky pic.

When Bob was a lad, ex-footballers used to run newsagents and not run around in motor boats. There's an industry here that supplies them and most of their customers will be private ferries for Sandbanks, probably.

Poole Quay
Poole Quay - Boatyards

They'll still be needing the Bentley, though, how else are you going to get over to Rownhams North Services on the M27 for that cash-only transaction? A big, fat envelope will seal the deal on one with lovely exterior lines, Portuguese-bridge bow seating and yes, for that, they'll even bung in the custom interior.

Crimson velour that's a tough but tactile textile with a nice, that's right, red nap.

That's a joke, of course. No seriously, that's a joke. Seriously.