PEOPLE

Holly Neil

‘My family’s all Dorset born and bred, I’ve lived here in this house all my life, and my Mum and Dad come from round here too. Mum works at Beaminster School as a teaching assistant for SEN children, and my Dad has his own business providing hoof care for cattle. I have two younger brothers, one working in a hospital in Southampton and the other living in London. Growing up round here my first school was at Evershot, which was tiny with about 10 of us in a class, and then ...

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Ian Scott

‘I came to work in Dorset in April 1974, on a community development project funded by the Department of the Environment. I was working in London and quite keen to get out; I had failed three interviews already for related projects, so perhaps the practice helped and they offered me a contract. The scheme was called ‘Community Initiatives in the Countryside’, and really set the tone for all my time in Dorset. For the first couple of months I lived in a caravan in a slightly out of season campsite at ...

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Kate Fowler

‘I was born in Bridport in 1970. My Mum had Asian flu early in her pregnancy, which was diagnosed as the reason I was born deaf, and that was confirmed when I was 6 months old. From then on for the next two years a peripatetic teacher for the deaf would visit me and my Mum once a week. Growing up in Chideock, as a young child I had two or three good friends, but integrating with other hearing children was difficult. When I was 2 years of age I ...

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Peter Bartlett

Julia Mear met Peter Bartlett in Beer, Devon. ‘I was born in one of the Fisherman’s cottages on Sea View Road, the fifth one down, in 1932. The locals know me as ‘Chunky’. My grandfather, Joseph, was one of the first tenants of these cottages. He and my father, Herman, both fished. My grandfather died aged 38 years and left eight children behind. My mother, Isabelle Tuck, was from Bournemouth. She was one of a twin and her aunts brought her up. Their family ran a café in Swanage. My mother ...

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Bella Blanchard

‘My childhood was spent in rural Wiltshire, where my sister, two brothers and I had a very happy and carefree upbringing. My mother took us riding around the countryside and we played in the fields and woods. My father was a bit eccentric. He strongly believed that we should learn to stand on our own two feet, and with that in mind, used to drive us into the middle of nowhere, equipped only with compasses, the plan being that we should find our own way home. As contrary individuals we ...

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