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 Opening hours

Opening times for the Dorset History Centre
DayOpening hours
Monday Closed
Tuesday 9am to 5pm 
Wednesday 9am to 5pm
Thursday 9am to 5pm
Friday 9am to 5pm
Saturday (every first and third Saturday of the month) 9am to 4:30pm
Sunday Closed

Requests to view original documents from the repository can be made, and retrieval usually takes around 10-15 minutes. Documents are not produced after 4.30pm on weekdays.

Saturday opening dates in 2018

Dorset History Centre Saturday opening dates 2018
MonthDates we are open
May 5 and 19
June 2 and 16
July 7 and 21
August 4 and 18
September 1 and 15
October 6 and 20
November 3 and 17
December 1 and 15

Saturday visits

Contact us to pre-order any original documents you would like to view 48 hours in advance of your visit. Further documents may be ordered on the day but retrieval times may vary. Document production will cease between 12:30 and 2pm. Last requests for documents will be taken at 3:45pm.

Where to find us

Dorset History Centre
Bridport Road

Getting to us


There are bus services to Dorchester from many parts of the county and Dorchester can be reached via the national coach network.
Search for a bus stop, timetables and departures for Dorset History Centre


Dorchester has two railway stations which run frequent services to Bristol, London, Poole and Bournemouth. Both stations are within 10-15 minutes walking distance of Dorset History Centre. Get more journey options and travel information


Dorset History Centre has a secure and dry bicycle storage facility at the front of the building. Please ask at reception for a key.

Car parking

Limited car parking is available on the paved area at the rear of Dorset History Centre. This includes three disabled bays. All money raised is used to support services provided by the History Centre.

Pay and display car park charges for the Dorset History Centre
 Time Charge
 up to 1 hour  70p
 up to 2 hours  £1
 up to 3 hours  £2
 up to 4 hours (no return)  £3

Please speak to a member of staff if you are using Dorset History Centre for longer than 4 hours. Charges apply Monday to Saturday from 8am until 6pm.
West Dorset Shoppers permits can't be used in our car park, as these are only valid in car parks run by West Dorset District Council.

The nearest public car park at Top O' Town has both long and short stay parking. The market car park (not available on Wednesdays) is a 10 minute walk from the History Centre. On Saturdays there are plenty of parking spaces available in the car park behind the centre.
See other car parks in Dorchester

Viewing Hutchins in the searchroom

Planning your visit

A guide to what you will need for your visit and what you can expect when you arrive.

William Bankes Egypt drawing ref D-BKL H J 6 11 A 17

Enhanced access

We are working hard to make sure everyone can benefit from our services.

East Dorset Heritage Trust visit to Dorset History Centre

Community group visits

We offer introduction sessions to Dorset History Centre and our resources.


#CycleToWorkDay And here's Eddie Sloper outside his shop in Shillingstone looking to hire and repair you a bicycle……