It's time to pick up our stroll of Dorchester's high street once again.

We've made it to 13 High West Street, which, in 1895, was home to Edwin Pitfield, hairdressers until in 1955 it became the unisex Mills Hairdressers. In 1972, it became Ann Hatherwell dress shop and ladies fashions until 1989. It was empty until 1990 when the Duchy of Cornwall information centre moved here from No 15. Then from 1998 it was Clarke and Co Estate Agents until July 1999. David Lane hairdressers opened in March 2000 and closed June 2003. It's now Serendipity Nail and Beauty Shop.

Many of you will remember the large white horse which was outside J. Mills and Sons saddlers at 14 High West Street. Its last day of trading was on December 30, 1995. Since then, it has had various guises; the premises were empty until October 1996 when a conservatory shop selling cane furniture opened under the name Brewers Loft, which closed on June 26, 2000. A Touch of Sun opened on January 3, 2000 selling gifts. Cilla and Camilla moved here from No 48 in July 2002; the shop changed name to Ceri and closed in July 2012. Then another gift shop, Cresso, opened in December 2012.

Moving on to 15 High West Street, this was Sarah Hazel, general furnishings in 1895. In 1898, it became Hazel and Co Ironmongers. At one time, it was Virgins Restaurant and then Braggs Sports Shop, which closed on March 31 on 1989.

The Duchy of Cornwall opened an information shop for a short time regarding the building and selling of properties in the newly established Poundbury estate. The premises were then empty until March 1991 when Dorchester Music and Hifi opened. In April 1996, The Peal of Gongs gift/cafe shop moved in but closed in June 2004. Domvs Estate Agents opened in March 2005 and is still trading.

Next, of much interest, is 16 High West Street and The Old Ship Inn. There used to be information in the ‘porthole’ window near the main entrance claiming that this was the oldest public house in Dorchester - this may well be true.

Thomas Hardy wrote a poem Leipzig which is the story of “Old Norbert”, the German who was sat in the master-tradesman's parlour in this pub one evening. It tells the story, as recalled by Old Norbert from his mother, of the battle with Napoleon at Leipzig.

The Old Ship was where Ralph Wightman could be found most lunchtimes with a pie and a pint. He worked for the National Farmers Union whose offices were in Agricultural House opposite He was a well-known broadcaster in the 1950s and 60s with a very pronounced Dorset accent appearing on radio programmes such as Gardeners Question Time.

Strangely enough, there is no 17 High West Street. It seems to have been absorbed by 18 and 18A. Back in 1895 the occupier at 18 and 18A was Martin March, draper. Emery and Meech milliners, gown specialists and furriers were there until 1935. Then Humphreys cafe trading as The Spinning Wheel. They closed on June 23, 1973.

The Temperance Building Society moved in to be taken over shortly afterwards by Gateway Building Society which then became the Woolwich Building Society in 1988 but closed in 1997. The florist Dianes opened in March 1997 and closed in October 2005. From 2006, The Property Gallery opened and later became Dorset Lettings, which had originated from offices in Trinity Street. Dorset Lettings moved across the road and on March 18, 2011, Fusion Lighting, electrical goods started trading.

At number 19 was Leeds Cash Clothing outfitters in 1895. Fare’s Stores (Grocers) were long term occupiers until closure in 1974. It was vacant until February 1976 when Dorchester Radio traded until 1989. It was empty again until Hamwood opened, moving to Antelope Walk in March 1991. Steve Bain, fabrics curtains and haberdashery, opened in October 1991 and is still trading.

*Thanks as always to Derek Pride for his detailed research.