From a press report of the time - Burton Bradstock and much of West Dorset’s coast suffered an earthquake at 3:35am on the first Tuesday of October in 1863.

“The rumbling sound was accompanied by a violent shaking of beds, like the passing of a heavy wagon at a short distance, that lasted about two seconds. Some thought that thieves had broken in; others awoke dizzy. The main oscillation was from east to west with a secondary motion of a whirling nature, producing feelings of dazed terror.

Strong doors jumped open from their catches. The shock was most violent at Burton Bradstock, Bridport Harbour, Chideock, Charmouth and Lyme Regis. The fright was considerable though a violent shock in the early hours of the morning comes upon a populace deeply removed from the cares of this world. Even a great noise then is only comparable to a horse rearing in the afternoon, it being impossible to gauge the magnitude of the disaster. Inland the effects were less perceptible, but along the coast most awoke in the middle of that night with a vivid impression of shock”.

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