- See & Do: For Couples
- See & Do: For Families
- See & Do: Free to Visit
- See & Do: Parks & Play Areas
- See & Do: Places to Visit in Dorchester
- Visitor Information
Borough Gardens was opened in 1896 and retains much of its Victorian grandeur and feel.
The Gardens are located within a few minutes walk of the town centre and are wheelchair accessible from all entrances which are located on the corner between Albert Road and Princes Street, Cornwall Road, Bowling Alley Walk and West Walks.
The centrally located bandstand was donated by Col. W.E. Brymer MP as a permanent memorial of Her Majesty Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee, and in acknowledgement of kindness received by him from Dorchester townspeople. It was designed by G.J. Hunt, the Borough Surveyor, and built by Messrs. T. MacFarlane and Co. of Glasgow for £200. The bandstand is still the focal point for live music and other events which take place in the Gardens over most weekends during the summer.
Close to the bandstand is an elaborate cast-iron clocktower painted in red, green and gold. There is an inscription recording the gift of the clock to the town by Charles Hansford in 1905.
There is a fountain in the north-east area of the Gardens. It is 16ft high with four seated lions backed by fern leaves supporting a 7’6″ diameter basin, a column of three carved birds below a 4′ diameter basin above, and an inverted scalloped basin with cherub and cornucopia on a flowered column at the top. It was donated by Charles Hansford in memory of G.J. Gregory JP, his brother-in-law and five times Mayor of Dorchester, and was officially named the Gregory Memorial Fountain.
There is a fully enclosed play area which has facilities for all age groups. The play equipment includes baby and standard swings, rockers, mini spinner, two different types of slide, multi play structure and seesaw. For the warmer days there is also a splash area that shoots water from the ground (cooling for the kids, but they will get wet!).
Kiosk on the Green
The ‘Kiosk on the Green’ located at the northern end of the Gardens sells a range of light snacks and drinks at a very competitive price. It is open every day in the summer and at weekends during the winter. The kiosk is run by the operators of Cafe on the Green at Poundbury, both facilities have an ethos of helping train young adults with learning difficulties by giving them the opportunity to achieve valuable work experience at the venues.
The public toilets are located adjacent to the refreshment kiosk building and are open all year round during the Gardens opening times.
The Gardens are open every day from dawn until dusk in the winter and 9.00pm in the summer.