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Did you attend the Wessex Foundation School? We'd love you to share your experience.

 

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Dorchester is a small but busy hospital...

Dorchester is a small but busy hospital. It is largely out the way from most other places and most people who started FY1 with me did not have Dorchester high up on their choices. However because of this Dorchester has a small supportive f1 and f2 community, everybody gets to know everybody. Additional to this core trainees surgical, medical and other trainees as well as registrars quickly become part of the community. The hospital is so small that in no time do you become familiar with all members of staff. My f1 rotations were largely well supportive and those that weren't have now improved. This means that hopefully most days will have some element of teaching. My F1 year at Dorchester was on a whole a good experience largely because it's such a small hospital you get to know everyone and everyone is really supportive from your fellow f1s through to random registrars who find you stuck on something on another ward.

 

Dorchester itself is small and in terms of places to eat and shop etc it's limited in comparison to bigger towns. However if you're a foody like me there are some awesome places to eat but I would save the shopping for your weekends out of town. The bonus of living in Dorchester is you are 15-20 mins from the coastline and even if you're not a water baby you eventually get sucked in at giving paddle boarding, windsurfing etc a try. Dorchester is sleepy in the winter but in the summer a lot more lively with loads of local food markets and festivals, great places to walk and obviously the beaches. In terms of living hospital accommodation is a rip off £400pm (now 450) bills included in a two/three bed house for a single room on site, it's great to get to know everyone quickly but most people move out and rent a flat or house with a pal which is cheaper or at the least you get a lot more for your money and leaving doctors are often a great source of cheap furniture.

 

You are close to Weymouth and Bournemouth. Southampton and Poole are not too far away but I can't say I have been to the latter two during my foundation years.

 

All in all most people who get placed in Dorchester are not keen on the idea of the place and think they will have to just survive by travelling home or London or wherever each weekend (I was one of these people). But you quickly love the place and the people especially in the summer and most people would say they are sad to leave in the end. If not the link into London is pretty good.

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