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Shitterton called worst-named British town

Aug. 16, 2012 at 1:45 AM

LONDON, Aug. 16 (UPI) -- Shitterton, a hamlet in Dorset, has been voted the most unfortunate name in Britain, findmypast.co.uk announced Wednesday.

In fact, Dorset -- a county better known for its beautiful coast, the old city of Dorchester and the countryside described by novelist Thomas Hardy -- had three places in the top 10, making it the loser among counties, the Dorset Echo reported. Scratchy Bottom was in the No. 2 spot, while Happy Bottom just scraped into the top 10.

Brokenwind in Aberdeenshire, Scotland, placed third, followed by Crapstone in Devon and Golden Balls near Oxford, the Daily Mirror said. Other place names selected by a survey of 1,700 people included Crackpot in North Yorkshire; Ugley, Essex; Backside in Aberdeenshire; and Great Snoring, Norfolk.

Findmypast is a genealogical Web site. Debra Chatfield, a family historian, said people looking for their ancestors are sometimes disconcerted to discover they lived in places with "unlikely, unfortunate or downright embarrassing names."

"Dorset is definitely the top county for unfortunate place names, with three in the top 10," she said.

A Wikipedia entry says the Shitterton sign was continually being replaced after being stolen by thieves -- until the Purbeck District Council decided against replacing it anymore. Shitterton residents installed a sign in 2010 made of Purbeck marble and weighing 1.5 tons -- which is still in place.

"The name doesn't bother us in the slightest," Ian Ventham, head of the Shitterton Parish Council, told the Mirror. "Shitterton also lies in the Piddle Valley, but so what?"

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