Tennyson Down

Tennyson Down

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Tennyson Down

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Description:
Tennyson Down is a hill at the west end of the Isle of Wight just south of Totland. Tennyson Down is a grassy, whale-backed ridge of chalk which rises to 482 ft/147m above sea level. Tennyson Down is named after the poet Lord Tennyson who lived at nearby Farringdon House for nearly 40 years. The poet used to walk on the down almost every day, saying that the air was worth 'sixpence a pint'.

Overview

It is part of the chalk ridge that forms the backbone of the Isle of Wight, this ridge extends to the west for where it ends with The Needles. To the east the hill descends gently down to Freshwater Bay where the sea has cut through the ridge. To the south is Highdown Cliffs, a near vertical chalk cliff drop of over 100 metres to the sea below.

The top of the Down is fairly flat and is predominately grass downland which provides a wide area for walking. There is some scrubland and small trees mainly on the northern side which is away from the prevailing wind.

The Down is owned and managed by the National Trust and is grazed by cattle and rabbits which ensures that its grass surface is closely cropped. It is open to the public.

At the top of the Down at a height of 147m stands a huge granite cross commemorating the life of Alfred Lord Tennyson. From here on a clear day it is possible to see Old Harry Rocks and the Isle of Purbeck to the west, Yarmouth and Lymington to the north, and to the east, much of the Solent, Fawley Oil Refinery, a large part of the western...
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