Dorset may be a relatively little county, but there are a large number of items of interest to shout about.

And these things with which to large up the county are packed into a new little book The delightful county of Dorset has featured in books, films, poems and on the TV.

And, say those who live here, no wonder. What’s not to like?

But did you know that Dorset is the place that has the highest number of conservation areas in England?

It’s where the world’s first underwater snapshot was taken – in Weymouth Bay in 1856.

And that the Guinness World Record for the highest number of people to gather in one room dressed as super-heroes was made right here in this county, at Bournemouth University?

The Little Book of Dorset, commissioned by Poundbury firm, Dorset Cereals, celebrates all these achievements, as well as a host of other amazing facts about the county. So, did you know… • Dorset has 20 towns, the largest of which is Bournemouth, the smallest, Stalbridge.

• Britain’s noose-rope capital was Bridport. The term “stabbed by a Bridport dagger” comes from this gruesome trade. More happily, the goal nets used in the 1966 World Cup were made in the town.

• 34 per cent of all Britain’s watercress comes from Dorset. Enough of the green stuff is produced each year to cover 23 football pitches.

• Dorset was the first place in England to grow cabbage – on the estate of Sir Anthony Ashley at Wimborne St Giles.

• It’s only 300 metres wide and 18 deep but the mouth of Poole harbour is the busiest stretch of water in the county. On bank holidays anything up to 1,000 different craft will use the entrance and the ferry crosses 12 times an hour.

• Poole lifeboat station is the busiest in the country.

• The tourist trade supports 13 per cent of the county’s jobs.

• The first beach hut ever was built in Bournemouth in 1908 – and you can still rent it.

• There are 14 species of orchid at ancient Badbury rings.

• The smallest pub in Britain is The Smith’s Arms in Godmanston.

* The Little Book of Dorset by Emma Mansfield (£5.99, Lovely Little Books).