The Purbeck Hills, also called the Purbeck Ridge, are a ridge of chalk downs in Dorset, England. The ridge extends from Lulworth Cove in the west to Old Harry Rocks in the east, where it meets the sea. The hills are part of a system of chalk downlands in southern England formed from the Chalk Group which also includes Salisbury Plain and the South Downs. For most of their length the chalk of the Purbeck Hills is protected from coastal erosion by a band of resistant Portland limestone. Where this band ends, at Durlston Head, the clay and chalk behind has been eroded, creating Poole Bay and the Solent. The ridge of steeply dipping chalk that forms the Purbeck Hills continues further east on the Isle of Wight.
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