The Square and Compass

Worth Matravers Swanage BH10 3LF

The Square and Compass is a Dorset institution. Built as a pair of cottages in the 18th century, the bar itself is simply a hatch in one wall and the interior a couple of rooms, warmed in winter by log fires and a mass of people and dogs. Nevertheless, the pub puts on frequent live music, crams in its own museum of local fossils and marine life and hosts a number of annual festivals, including a stone carving festival (July–Aug), a September Jazz Festival and an autumn competition for the biggest local pumpkin. The garden, too, is a fascinating hotchpotch of stone stools and carved chairs overlooking superb countryside, while the pub’s ales, ciders and famous pies really hit the spot.

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