Old Harry Rocks

3 April 2021 By ian

Old Harry Rocks mark the eastern end of the 95 miles of the Jurassic Coast. They started forming around 100 million years ago when plankton skeletons started to settle on the sea bed. 35 million years later, these chalk rocks were the result. It’s absolutely incredible what nature can do.

Originally there was a continuous chalk ridge connecting this part of the coast to the Needles on the Isle of Wight but over time the connecting sections were washed away. The sea eroded weak points in the ridge to form caves, which eventually became arches before the tops of the arches fell away to leave these columns.

The origin of the name Old Harry is subject to some debate. According to Wikipedia the rocks may be named after the devil, who was said to sleep on them, or after a drowned Viking raider, Earl Harold, or perhaps after a famous Tudor Poole pirate called Henry Paye.

My minimalist drawing of Old Harry Rocks, as seen from Studland, is available at a very special price until this Saturday. It’s A3, graphite pencil on paper.