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Nicodemus Heights: a captive audience

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Nicodemus Heights: a captive audience

Nicodmes Heights is a site of special scientific interest set in the north eastern corner of Portland, the high end hence the 'heights' in its name. It is set between the Young Offenders Institution and the formidable Portland prison. I say this to give you orientation, not to discourage you from visiting! It is worth a visit to see the wonderful views of the south Dorset coast stretching right the way to the distant St Aldhelm's Head.

From a nature point of view this is a place for flowers and butterflies. Portland is in some ways an austere place and its also scruffy and untidy but all of that is part of its charm and the flora tends to reflect this with a range of flowers associated with thin soils and waste places. The relatively scarce hawkweed oxtongue being a good example as, too, the viper's bugloss which is as prolific here as I have ever seen it and tall, striking plants too.

Part of Nicodemus Heights is abandoned quarry workings but the ground is flat and easy walking despite this and there are no real hazards to be concerned about. There is a well made path that one can follow towards the prison and nearby view point (with a seat) or one can follow one of the several paths across the grassy areas where the best of the flowers are.

This seems to be a rather forgotten and neglected part of Portland but well worth a visit, what is other loss will be your gain!




This is just my nature note: for lots more information including distribution maps, status charts, identification guidance and more photographs go to the species home page by clicking/tapping the icon