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North Dorset District
North Dorset shown within Dorset
North Dorset shown within Dorset
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Constituent countryEngland
RegionSouth West England
Non-metropolitan countyDorset
Admin HQBlandford Forum
Incorporated1 April 1974 to 31 March 2019
 • TypeNon-metropolitan district council
 • BodyNorth Dorset District Council
 • LeadershipLeader and Cabinet (Conservative)
 • MPsSimon Hoare
 • Total235.2 sq mi (609.2 km2)
 • Rank(of 309)
 • Total71,100
 • Density300/sq mi (120/km2)
 • Ethnicity
98.6% White
Time zoneUTC0 (GMT)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+1 (BST)
ONS code19UE (ONS)
E07000050 (GSS)
OS grid referenceST8862706885

North Dorset was a local government district in Dorset, England. It was largely rural, but included the towns of Blandford Forum, Gillingham, Shaftesbury, Stalbridge and Sturminster Newton. Much of North Dorset was in the River Stour valley and is called the Blackmore Vale. The economy of North Dorset was largely dairy agriculture based.

The district was formed on 1 April 1974, under the Local Government Act 1972, from the municipal boroughs of Blandford Forum, Shaftesbury, Blandford Rural District, Shaftesbury Rural District and Sturminster Rural District. The district and its council were abolished on 1 April 2019 and, together with the other 4 districts outside the greater Bournemouth area, incorporated into a Dorset unitary authority.[1]

At the 2001 UK census North Dorset had a population of 61,905, a rise of 8,300 from 1991, with 25,248 households.

North Dorset is home to North Dorset Rugby Football Club.


Towns with a population over 2,500 are in bold.


Main article: List of churches in North Dorset


  1. ^ Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (25 May 2018). "The Bournemouth, Dorset and Poole (Structural Changes) Order 2018". Retrieved 28 May 2018.

Coordinates: 50°51′38.92″N 2°9′41.77″W / 50.8608111°N 2.1616028°W / 50.8608111; -2.1616028