PURBECK beauty spot the Blue Pool is attracting hundreds of visitors this winter.

For the first time ever, the attraction based at Wareham is hosting an special nighttime event which sees the reserve lit up.

The event is proving very popular but the site has drawn visitors for decades.

Here we look at what the Blue Pool is and why it's so popular.

What's at the Blue Pool?

The Blue Pool Nature Reserve is a Site of Special Scientific Interest.

The main attraction is a pool which is surrounded by 25 acres of protected heath, woodland and gorse and is also home to a cafe, gift shop and museum.

Animals, plants and insects thrive within the pool grounds and throughout the estate including Dartford Warblers and rare green sand lizards.

What's Blue Pool's history?

The nature reserve and tearooms form part of privately-owned Furzebrook Estate which traces its history back nearly 400 years.

The tearooms opened its doors to the public in 1935.

In 1985, the site was declared a site of special scientific interest.

The site closed in September 2020, following the death of proprietor Jennifer Barnard, aged 91.

Ms Barnard, whose father bought the former clay pit in 1935, had operated the nature reserve site for about 70 years.

In a statement posted at the time on Facebook, Blue Pool said: "Jennifer Barnard dedicated her life to The Blue Pool and surrounding Furzebrook Estate – she had a lifelong passion for this magical place."

It reopened at the end of March 2021 under the new ownership of Matthew and Julie Jones.

What makes Blue Pool so special?

The star attraction is the pool which is a former clay-pit, dug by hand and abandoned in the early 19th Century, which subsequently filled with rainwater.

The pool's waters can appear green or turquoise due to suspension of clay particles.

The colour phenomenon is caused by light diffracting from minuscule particles of clay suspended in the water.

Bournemouth Echo: ILLUMINATE at the Blue Pool. Credit: Cenk Albayrak-Touye  @photos_by_cenk

Photos by Cenk Albayrak-Touye 

What are the illuminations?

Illuminate is a trail through the woodland and around the lake which is also lit-up.

Visitors can enjoy 1km of professionally staged illuminations, lighting the meandering woodland trails.

The Blue Pool has teamed up with OT Event Technicians to create the event.

How long is it on for?

The spectacle launched on January 13 and runs until February 27.

It runs every Thursday to Sunday between 4pm and 8pm.

How much are tickets?

Tickets cost between £5 and £10 and parking is free onsite for all ticket holders.

They are available at www.bluepooltearooms.co.uk and Eventbrite.

Entry is free for annual members of The Blue Pool. Email info@thebluepool.co.uk to book in advance.