House prices in Dorset have risen by nearly £50,000 over the last year - but growth is slower than the national average.

Buyers paid an average of £360,661 in July for a property in Dorset - a marginal increase of 0.1% on the previous month,

House prices in the South West increased by 2.7% over the month with a 2% rise for the UK as a whole.

The figures, compiled by the ONS, showed that Dorset placed 12th out of the 29 local authorities in the south west when it comes to annual growth.

Over the last year, the average sale price of property in Dorset rose by £48,000.

Buyers in Dorset paid 9.2% more than the average price in the South West (£330,000) in July.

First-time buyers in Dorset spent an average of £281,000 on their property – £36,000 more than a year ago, and £59,000 more than in July 2017.

Across the South West, property prices are higher than those across the UK, where the average cost is £292,000.

Owners of semi-detached houses saw the biggest improvement in property prices in Dorset in July – they increased 0.3%, to £353,733 on average.

The boost contributes to the longer-term trend, which has seen property prices in the area achieve 15.5% annual growth.

Across the UK, the the average UK house price leapt by 15.5% in the year to July, marking the biggest increase in 19 years.

But the increase in annual inflation was mainly because of “a base effect” from the falls in prices seen this time last year, as a result of changes in the stamp duty holiday, the ONS said.

In Dorset, the average price of a detached property is £537,078; for a semi-detached house it's £353,733; a terraced property costs £283,098; whilst the average flat hits the market for £191,862.

The best annual growth in the south west was in South Hams, where property prices increased on average by 20.8%, to £427,000.

At the other end of the scale, properties in the Forest of Dean gained just 9.9% in value, giving an average price of £298,000.