Old Post Office Swanage

Spacious and comfortable self-catering apartment in Swanage – just a stone’s throw from the clifftops overlooking the enduring beauty of Swanage Bay.

Billet Doux Garden



The Old Post Office in Swanage offers a luxurious self-catering annexe for two, with a sofa bed in the lounge for occasional use. It is available by the week (Saturday to Saturday) or for shorter breaks by arrangement.

The accommodation, The Billet Doux (French for ‘love letter’), comprises a well-equipped kitchen (fridge, freezer, microwave, dishwasher, washing machine etc) with dining area. Hallway leading to a large shower room, double bedroom with king-size bed, and spacious sitting room with freeview TV/DVD and plenty of books, games etc. 

Patio doors open on to a peaceful garden with furniture and there is also an off-road parking space.

The property is centrally heated with underfloor heating in kitchen and bathroom and has Wifi connection.

 The Billet Doux is ideal for couples wanting homely, relaxing and comfortable accomodation in order to spend the week exploring and enjoying Swanage and Purbeck.

Billet Doux Dresser
Old Post Office exterior

The Billet Doux

The Billet Doux is a self-catering cottage annexe to the Old Post Office; the main building still has the original post box set into the front wall. Your host, Jude Tucker, is often in residence next door, where she can be found stone carving in her studio. The Old Post Office also hosts a series of residential stone carving courses: visit the SeaSculpt website for more information.

Romantics who love the sea need look no further. Situated in a peaceful location on the Ballard Estate, a unique private cliff-top estate, the Billet Doux is within 200 yards of Swanage’s North Beach on the South West Coast Path. There is easy access to Ballard Down, with Old Harry Rocks and the rest of the Jurassic Coast World Heritage Site right on the doorstep.

A 15 minute stroll along the award-winning beachfront takes you to the town centre with its pier, stone quay and steam railway, as well as many galleries, restaurants, bars and pubs.

The emphasis at The Old Post Office is on relaxation and tranquillity, and The Billet Doux offers an intimate and private location with everything right on your doorstep: rolling countryside, sandy beaches, breathtaking scenery, castle ruins, a steam railway, long hikes into the hills, short walks to quayside bars and slow meanders home again.

The Ballard Estate

THE BALLARD ESTATE began life as a tented military encampment in about 1907 and evolved into barracks during the First World War. Canadian lumber was used for building the huts and it was of such good quality that many of the old wooden huts remain. Most have been much modernised over the years and others have been demolished and new buildings erected on the sites but, because planning consent is restricted to single storey dwellings, the basic character has been maintained.

The Ballard Estate Company administers the land today and mutually agreed rules and covenants maintain the unique character of a unique collection of bungalows by the sea that has largely resisted the march of time. The Estate even has its own ‘chine’, with a flight of steps connecting it to the beach at Shep’s Hollow. 

Ballard Estate
“The Billet Doux is very well equipped and extremely comfortable, a pleasure to return to after a day out. We did not want to leave!” Guest feedback, Alastair Sawday’s


Prices for booking the Billet Doux self-catering annexe at The Old Post Office range from £395 per week in low season to £610 per week during July and August.

Changeover day for weekly bookings is generally Saturday. The Billet Doux is available for shorter periods such as weekends between October and March or for last minute bookings; contact us to enquire.

There are no hidden extras; prices include electricity, heating, hot water, clean linen, towels, WiFi and television.  There is a sofa bed for occasional use. There is parking for one vehicle and there is a private and secluded patio area with access from the lounge. The Billet Doux is ideally suited for two people but can accommodate extra members of the family. Unfortunately we cannot accommodate pets.

We do not take online bookings but please use the Contact Form to enquire about availablity, prices or any other queries you may have.

Please note that the Old Post Office self-catering annex is currently fully booked throughout July, August and September 2016. For enquiries about bookings after this date – or for any other information – please send a message using the Contact Form below.

“From the welcoming wine, biscuits and flowers to Jude checking we had everything we needed it was a perfect base for walks & exploring Purbeck/Dorset. Trip Advisor

Out & About

THE OLD POST OFFICE is the ideal base from which to explore the beautiful Isle of Purbeck and the surrounding areas. Ninety five miles of spectacular Jurassic Coastline start here, awarded Natural World Heritage status by UNESCO for its outstanding beauty and geological interest.

Much of Purbeck lies within an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and includes heathland and forests, rolling farmland, cliffs and bays, sandy beaches, dunes and rockpools. There are delightful villages, ancient castles, historic houses and gardens. Take a stroll on Swanage’s Victorian Pier or ride the steam train to Corfe Castle. Brownsea Island, Monkey World, Bovington Tank Museum, Lulworth Cove and Durdle Dor are all within easy reach, and there are many activities to be enjoyed such as golf, horseriding, cycling, diving and climbing.

Swanage Carnival (August) is a hugely popular action-packed week with firework displays and a breathtaking performance by the Red Arrows. We also have a very successful Jazz Festival (July), two Blues Festivals (March and October), two Folk Festivals (August and September), a Reggae Festival (July), a Fish Festival (June) and a Walking Festival (September) taking place during the year.

Purbeck is home to many artists who actively take part in the Dorset and Purbeck Arts Weeks and the stone carving festival which takes place at the Square and Compass in Langton Matravers at the end of July. There are plenty of opportunities to try stone carving: SeaSculpt hold residential stone carving courses at the Old Post Office and there are also courses at the Burngate Stone Carving Centre.


Along with the many pubs that serve food, Swanage also boasts several restaurants, any of which can book for you in advance. The closest pub is the recently refurbished and family-friendly Crow’s Nest, just a five minute stroll from your accommodation. The Bull and Boat is just a few minutes further along the beach with fantastic views over the bay. A ten-minute stroll along the seafront brings you into the centre of Swanage where you will be spoilt for choice. Tawny’s is the local wine bar: great food, good atmosphere; The Old Brick Pizza Company offers a taste of Italy. The list goes on: The Cauldron, The Canteen, two Indian restaurants, a Chinese, a sit down fish and chip restaurant (as well as the usual takeaways), an Italian Trattoria, a pizza house and many more. Gee Whites on the old stone quay is perfect for a seafood lunch or an early dinner on a balmy evening (outside seating only).


Contact us

Please use the Contact Form to enquire about availability; an email address will be enough for us to get back to you.

NB: This is not a booking form. Please enquire about available dates but we will contact you to confirm bookings. If you need a more immediate response, please call 07971 489449.

We are easy to find in North Swanage (see map). You will be supplied with a map and directions to your accommodation with confirmation of your booking.