Fleet, Dorset

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Moonfleet Manor Hotel - geograph.org.uk - 421787.jpg
Moonfleet Manor Hotel
Fleet is located in Dorset
Fleet shown within Dorset
Population60 [1]
OS grid referenceSY634805
Shire county
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
FireDorset and Wiltshire
AmbulanceSouth Western
EU ParliamentSouth West England
UK Parliament
  • West Dorset
List of places
50°37′21″N 2°31′09″W / 50.6224°N 2.5191°W / 50.6224; -2.5191Coordinates: 50°37′21″N 2°31′09″W / 50.6224°N 2.5191°W / 50.6224; -2.5191

Fleet is a small, scattered village and civil parish in south Dorset, England, situated in the West Dorset administrative district approximately 2.5 miles (4.0 km) west of Weymouth. It consists of the small settlements of East Fleet, West Fleet, Fleet House, and Fleet Common, all of which are close to the shore of The Fleet, a brackish lagoon behind Chesil Beach. The name "Fleet" is derived from fleot, Old English for an inlet or estuary.[2] Dorset County Council estimate that the population of the civil parish was 60 in 2013.[1]

The Great Storm of 1824 caused waves to breach Chesil Beach, and many of the buildings in the village were destroyed.[3] An eye-witness described the event:

At six o'-clock on the morning of the 23rd I was standing with other boys by the gate near the cattle pound when I saw, rushing up the valley, the tidal wave, driven by a hurricane and bearing upon its crest a whole haystack and other debris from the fields below. We ran for our lives to Chickerell, and when we returned found that five houses had been swept away and the church was in ruins.[2]

A new church, Holy Trinity, was built a short distance inland and only the chancel of the old one stands today.[2]

J. Meade Falkner's smuggling novel Moonfleet is set in the village. There is a brass memorial to Falkner in the old church, together with brass plate memorials to members of the Mohun family whose name was used in the novel.[2] Moonfleet Manor Hotel is a Georgian building[2] in the west of the parish on the shore of The Fleet, previously called Fleet House.

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  1. ^ a b "Parish Population Data". Dorset County Council. 20 January 2015. Retrieved 28 February 2015.
  2. ^ a b c d e Roland Gant (1980). Dorset Villages. Robert Hale Ltd. pp. 168–70. ISBN 0 7091 8135 3.
  3. ^ "Fleet". weymouth-dorset.co.uk. Retrieved 27 January 2014.

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