The Square and Compass Pub Dorset

Worth Matravers BH19 3LF (Google Map)

The Square and Compass is the perfect finish for many coastal walks in the Worth Matravers region and also a popular stopping off point for walkers on the South West Coast Path.

In 2014 it won the Good Pub Guide’s award for Unspoilt Pub of the Year and is just one of nine pubs to have featured in every edition of CAMRA’s Good Beer Guide.

Square and Compass pub at Worth Matravers Dorset
The Square and Compass pub, Worth Matravers. 09 March 2021

The pub is a quirky, no fuss no frills place but is always friendly with a great atmosphere. The interior looks as if it hasn’t changed for centuries with low ceilings, flagstone floors and drinkers packed into tiny rooms. Drinks and homemade pies are ordered and served through two hatches, there’s no bar counter! After a few pints you might be forgiven for thinking you’ve been transported back into a Thomas Hardy novel.

Square and Compass public house near Swanage

A good variety of craft beers are served as well as home-brewed, hand-pressed scrumpy that gives me a headache just thinking about it. You can also get a cup of tea or coffee if you prefer.

If you are hungry there are delicious homemade pies and pasties, including a vegan option, soup, apple cake and ice cream

The pub includes a small museum which displays an interesting collection of fossils and local artefacts.

The Square and Compass is a Grade II listed public house built in the 18th century, originally a pair of cottages before becoming an alehouse in 1776. Due to its location it was a popular haunt for smugglers. In 1830 the landlord, Charles Bower, changed its name to the Square and Compass as he had been a stonemason. In 1907 the pub was bought by Charlie Newman, great-grandfather of the current owner of the same name.

Square and Compass Fossil Museum
Just starting out on a walk to St. Aldhelm’s Head very early in the morning. As you come out of the car park and turn right the Square and Compass pub is just a few metres down the road on your left. Great sea views from the outdoor seating at the front. For more photos in this series see Worth Matravers to Winspit and St. Aldhelm’s Head Walk.

Nearby walks include:

The Best Worth Matravers Walks
The Best Worth Matravers Walks
Worth Matravers to Seacombe & Winspit
Worth Matravers to Winspit and St. Aldhelm’s Head