Learn More About Us

Our History

Bishops cottage started life as three separate fishermen's cottages in the 16th century. The gardens where all vegtables plots until all the houses and the hill behind was bought by the Bishop of Salisbury in the 1880. His name was Wordsworth and he was the son of the poet William Wordsworth. A man , who had 10 children. Which was the norm in Victorian times he went about re-modelling the cottages into the house that we see today giving each of his children their own room and nursery. Bishops cottage as a building became, almost overnight, a great big busking " Hogwarts " and to this day comes alive with children in it.

In the late 1890's Bishop Wordsworth became friends with his neighbours next door to Bishops Cottage, Sir Fredrick Trevers who was surgeon to King Edward V11. However he was more famous as the discoverer of "The Elephant Man." The great writer James Barrie was a regular visitor to Lulworth and Bishops. It is said that he drew inspiration for never land from the coves and coasts of Lulworth, but more importantly from the hoards of children in Bishop s who passed their idilic summers in Lulworth.

After the First World War bishops was opened up as a small restaurant and coffee shop by one of Bishop Wordsworth s children. Some of the original menu signs are still in the games room. They offered Lobster teas with watercress for a shillin . During the Second World War bishops was taken over by the American s who along with the home guard operated an anti aircraft gun from the garden and also on a pontoon mores in the Center of Lulworth Cove.

The Rudd family bought Bishops Cottage in 1960 and ran it as a guest house and home . The present owner Philip was born in the Bar Room in 1964. His father Peter, built the gardens and swimming pool in 1977. While his mother Elizabeth ran the hotel and

was the chef . When Peter Rudd died in 1991 the property was sold and became a private house . Philip who was 27 at the time was working in London and ran the beach cafe on the beach at Lulworth which obtained legendary status. In July bought Bishops Cottage black into the Rudd family in 2004 . Since then it has developed into what it always was. A family home with lovely large letting rooms in the outbuildings such as the boathouse and the pool rooms.

Margaret (Our Ghost)

For many years, even before our family moved in it was acknowledged that at night, on the very top floor, you could hear someone playing marbles. This was accompanied by, on very rare occasions, a little girl trying to wake you up to play in the wee small hours of the night. This was never threating or nasty in most cases just an annoying little girl. However it happened on so many different occasions that we had to do some research to find out what was afoot. On one occasion an army office who was staying with us and based at the Lulworth Army camp even had a protracted conversation with the little girl trying to get her to go back to bed and where where her parents room. He knocked on a few doors to the great irritation of the other guest who had no little girls staying or even children. When the young lieutenant returned to the landing to find the girl she was gone. Next morning he was very embarrassed at breakfast and apologised. To us who live here she is a constant presence but only on the top floor. We keep a picture of her in the games room and bar. The picture was here when the property was purchased in 1960 and to the best of our knowledge she is one of the daughters of Bishop Wordsworth. We call her Margaret.