Welcome to The Arts Society Dorset County website.

This society serves the Dorchester and Weymouth area in Dorset and our members are interested in and enjoy the arts in general. Our Society is affiliated to The Arts Society  (formerly National Association of Decorative and Fine Arts Societies (NADFAS)).

Our objective, through lectures and visits, is to bring people together through a shared appreciation and curiosity for all the arts. We meet in the Corn Exchange in Dorchester to attend illustrated lectures given by experts chosen for their knowledge and presentational skills to speak on a huge variety of topics: architecture, artists, china, glass, painting, sculpture, jewellery, furniture, music, dance and much more, covering every period when mankind has been creative.

The Visits may include museums, palaces, country houses, gardens, exhibitions and other places of interest. Our Special Interest Days provide the opportunity for members who want to study subjects in greater depth from a lecturer who has more time to speak at length. We also enjoy several social events each year. Our volunteers help at the Dorset County Museum and Church Trails in churches nearby. Our society also supports Young Arts with a variety of projects.

We are open to all age groups and hope you will find much to interest you in our very varied programme of events.

Guests of members and visitors wishing to attend on a "trial" basis are welcome to our lectures and, as a Registered Charity, we request a discretionary donation of £5 per person at the door.

Why not spend time to explore this website to discover more about our activities?


Tickets are now available from the Secretary. Please go to "Lectures" for more information and an application form.


The reading list for Mary Alexander's excellent Special Interest Day on 10 October 2017 may be accessed by going to "Our Society" then "Documents" or by clicking here.


Your Committee had taken the decision to follow the guidance of our governing body and together with the majority of member societies advised that we now adopt the new name for our Society. Members were asked to vote at an EGM held before our 21 September meeting and overwhelmingly endorsed the move to the new name. A copy of the Minutes of the EGM is available under  " Our Society" then "Documents"

Please see "News" for our latest communication. 

The website now reflects the new name and logo. 

A film about the rebranding can be linked to here.  


Our first visit in 2018 will be a three-day outing with an exciting programme taking in Blenheim Palace, a guided city tour of Oxford, Pitt-Rivers Museum, Ashmolean Museum and Hughenden Manor departing 22 April 2018. Please go to VISITS for details.This trip has proved to be very popular and is almost full already. Please contact David Norris asap if you wish to be included.


We would be very grateful if members would give us feedback on their opinion of the quality and interest level of the lectures via the website. This will help us greatly in preparing the future programmes.

All current members have been registered and should be able to give feedback on lectures.  If anyone finds problems in registering, please send a message and the registration will be done MANUALLY by the Website Manager.  Once an acknowledgement reply is received to say that registration is successful, please give your feedback again. This may take some time as the Website Manager may not be at his computer at that moment!