As a new year begins we look back at Dorchester and its surrounding areas in times gone by.

While much has changes in the intervening decades some places remain reassuringly familiar.

Thomas Hardy's birthplace in Higher Bockhampton is still a focal point for devotees of the town's most illustrious son.

The Keep is now a popular museum and still standing guard over the town.

The Borough Gardens is still a great place to enjoy a leisurely stroll.

And even the streets have retained much of their old-world charm even if many of the names above the shop fronts have long disappeared.

We would also love to hear from you if you have any old pictures of Dorchester and nearby villages you would like to share with our readers.

Contact Meghan Hindley on 01305 830985 or email