Shaftesbury is a fantastic location to live and work

Shaftesbury is a town and civil parish in Dorset, England situated 20 miles west of Salisbury, near the border with Wiltshire. It is the only significant hilltop settlement in Dorset, being built about 215 metres above sea level on a greensand hill on the edge of Cranborne Chase.

Working in Shaftesbury means that when you close your laptops you are only a moment away from the beautiful North Dorset countryside. Pop into town and you can chose to explore the many interesting little shops stretching down the pretty street, venture down the famous cobbled road of Gold Hill, visit the Abbey, or simply wander along Park walk and take in the incredible views over the Blackmore Vale which forms the backdrop to our fabulous little market town.


Shaftesbury has a thriving High Street and is home to many successful businesses

Despite its small and rural nature Shaftesbury is home to a flourishing high street boasting a colourful mix of national chains and independently owned stores. The famous cobbles of Gold HIll never fail to attract a string of visitors each year which gives the town a bustling vibrant feel.

As well as the opportunity to refresh in one of a handful of pubs, charming coffee shops, delicatessens and tea rooms, the town has a lively creative community. Visit Swan’s Yard or The Arts Centre and you’ll see much of Shaftesbury’s charm.


Base your business in Shaftesbury

Why work in the city when you can enjoy all that life in this beautiful rural setting has to offer whilst maintaining the ability to connect your business to others around the world?

Shaftesbury has good and direct road and rail links to the major cities of London, Bristol, Exeter, and Southampton, all within 2 hours away, but if you’d rather not travel also has fibre speed broadband, so whether you wish to work from your own home or in our vibrant business centre, you’ll be fully connected and relaxed enough to focus on running your business.

There are excellent private and state schools for the family, plenty of great towns to visit and some amazing countryside along with the Jurassic coast to explore in your down time.


Business networking opportunities across North Dorset

For a start up or small business at any stage, networking gives an opportunity to connect with other businesses, can provide a lifetime of support, solutions to problems and lead to new business opportunities.

Local Area

Things to do in and around Shaftesbury

Gold Hill

Stand on the ancient cobbles of Gold Hill, a steep picturesque street made famous by the popular and nostaligic 1970's TV advert for Hovis Bread; beside the Grade 1 listed walls of the Abbey built by King Alfred the Great and you will soon see why it is often described as 'one of the most romantic sights in England'

Gold Hill Fair

Throughout history, it was a tradition to line Gold Hill with stalls and markets in the summer and so the fair gained its name. These days the high street is closed to traffic and the July celebrations take place at the top of the hill where colourful stalls decorate the street from end to end, complete with live music, drama displays, independent stalls and fun fair games.

Shaftesbury Market

As a Saxon Hill town, Shaftesbury has one of the most beautiful and commanding settings of any market town in England. Located on ancient trading routes it has a long history of markets and today, as well as a regular Thursday Charter Market, there are Farmers' markets, book fairs, flea markets, an annual Food Festival plus the occasional French Market, all of which add to the bustling atmosphere of this stunning little town.

Fringe Festival

This acclaimed and vibrant arts festival takes place in July and is a catalyst for creativity and fun. Included in the festival is an eclectic mix of music, comedy, dance, theatre and everything else in between, all housed in the many venues across the town including historic churches, cosy cafes, hairdressing salons and even a dentist surgery. Spread over a weekend, there's a packed schedule and plenty of opportunity to join the merrymaking.

Shaftesbury Heritage Trail

The trail includes some 12 blue plaques around the town, the ancient Abbey, historic Hospital and Park Walk which, originally in the grounds of the Abbey, was laid in the 1760's as a fashionable promenade with superb views stretching down to Love Lane which marks the southern boundary of the Saxon fortified town created by King Alfred the Great after his defeat of the Deans in 878AD. Alfred founded the Abbey ten years later , the ruins of which are also an enchanting place to visit.

Shaftesbury Arts Centre

Following the purchase of an old covered market, The Arts Centre was established in 1957 and is now widely recognised as one of the best volunteer/membership led arts centres in the South West. Offering a regular, varied and lively year round programme of amateur and professional plays, films, art, photography and craft exhibitions and workshops, it is a much loved and appreciated heart of the community.

Larmer Tree Gardens

Created by General Pitt Rivers in 1880, these beautiful 11 acre gardens are set in the heart of Cranborne Chase, an area of outstanding natural beauty on the Wiltshire/Dorset border. The gardens are an extraordinary example of Victorian extravagance and vision. With majestic trees and intimate arbours creating secrecy and surpise, along with vast open lawns perfect on which to lounge or enjoy a relaxing game of croquet, it's easy to see why this is an ideal and much loved wedding venue. In 1895 Thomas Hardy proclaimed that it was 'quite the prettiest sight I ever saw in my life'

Cranborne Chase

A 380 sq mile area of natural beauty overlapping the bounderies of Wilts, Dorset, Hampshire, and Somerset, Cranborne Chse has a diverse and rich landscape of rolling chalke grassland, ancient woodland, chalk escarpments, downland hillsides and chalk river valleys each with distinct and recognisable character. Offering such beautiful countryside and tranquil villages with welcoming pubs, it's an idyllic setting for summertime strolls, brisk winter walks and scenic cycle rides.


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