The Lake District is so awesomely beautiful and has so much to keep families flocking here, that the secret is finding a hideaway from the crowds and still be close to all the highlights. Ta-da! The four-star, roses-round-the-door Ford Cottage fits the bill nicely!
Ford Cottage is tucked away in the rural Rusland Valley, between the South Lakes holiday honey-pots of Coniston and Windermere, with all their attractions both on and off their Lakes. Over the last 300 years, Ford Cottage has been a pub, a post office and home to the chauffeur of nearby Rusland Hall but now it’s a much loved holiday home that’s been luxuriously brought up to date and geared up for families.
Even if the Lakeland weather does its worse, families will be snug as bugs in the centrally heated Cottage, hunkering down by the wood burner to watch Freesat TV, or a family DVD, or stream the likes of Netflix through a clever Chromecast gizmo. Parents can also enjoy a little peace and quiet as children discover a treasure chest of toys and games in a separate snug which makes the perfect play room. The lounge leads into the dining area, so children can retreat to the sofas while parents linger at the table, and the spotless modern kitchen has all the mod cons families need. Upstairs, Ford Cottage has three tastefully appointed bedrooms which can all fit the travel cot provided, and there is a family bathroom, shower-room and a downstairs loo.
Ford Cottage overlooks a working hill farm and has a good sized garden for children to play at the side and rear of the house, with a gate, that can be bolted, to the parking area and country lane. Views over the fells provide a perfect backdrop to watch the sun go down and a Webber BBQ is provided for sizzling those famously fat and herby Cumberland sausages.
Ford Cottage comfortably sleeps 6 people plus a baby in a cot, with two double bedrooms and one twin bedroom. Both double bedrooms have space for a travel cot, which is provided, and there is just about space in the twin room. If required, there is also a sofa bed on the ground floor, in the snug. The cottage has a bathroom and separate shower room upstairs and a downstairs loo. The beamed living room and dining area is open plan, featuring a table for 6, comfy sofa and armchair, wood burning stove, flatscreen Freesat TV, DVD player, iPod dock and Chromecast device for streaming Netflix etc. The cottage has free Wi Fi and there are many children’s DVD’s to choose from in the snug. The modern kitchen has ‘spill resistant’ polished wood floor, gleaming cream tiling and is fully equipped with modern appliances, children’s crockery, plastic cutlery and a high chair. The cottage also has a washing machine and a heated clothes airer. There is a fenced garden to the side and rear, with a gate that can be bolted to a parking area.
Located in a quiet, rural corner of the South Lakes, Ford Cottage is almost smack between Lake Windermere and Coniston Water, in the unspoilt Rusland Valley. Staying here, families have the best of both worlds, being within easy reach of so many of the most popular highlights and attractions but just nicely off the well beaten tourist track.
The nearest pub is 2 miles away and there are several shops for essential provisions within a 5 mile radius. The bustling little Lakeland town of Hawkshead is 6 miles away, with a number of pubs and cafes serving good food as well as the tantalising Honeypot deli, interesting gift shops, a small Co-Op and the Hawkshead outdoor clothing shop. The road to Hawkshead also passes through Grizedale which has become a mecca for outdoors and adrenalin activities, with sculpture trails, hiking trails and mountain biking tracks through the forest as well as a Go Ape centre.
Up and over the hill from Hawkshead is the little town of Coniston at the head of the lake, with more shops, cafes and pubs to choose from, including the Coniston Brewery pub, the Black Bull Inn. From Coniston, families can hire boats to mess about on the water, or take a hop-on-hop-off boat trip down the Lake, perhaps visiting John Ruskin’s waterside home, Brantwood. This is also the home of Swallows and Amazons, (with the author actually buried in Rusland Church Yard near the cottage), and a special Coniston Cruise reveals places from the book, including the secret harbour on Wild Cat Island.
Over the fells to the East, England’s largest lake stretches for over 10 miles, from Newby Bridge right up to the popular tourist town of Ambleside, with some lovely lake beaches near Low Wray. Besides the boats that cruise up and down the lake, a mini car ferry runs across the middle from Sawrey near Hawkshead to Bowness, where a top attraction for children is the magical World of Beatrix Potter. Further up the hill from Bowness is the town of Windermere itself, with a high street of shops, cafes and an excellent Booths supermarket. On this side of Lake Windermere, Brockhole is another fab day out for the kids, with adventure playgrounds, treetop treks, pony rides, boat hire, mini golf and indoor soft play for under 5’s.
Besides all the highlights of the Lakes, Ford Cottage is also convenient for discovering the better kept secrets of the Furness Peninsula, including the ‘sticky pudding’ foody town of Cartmel, the superb South Lakes Safari Zoo, sandy beaches and even Thomas the Tank Engine’s Island of Sodor!
Nearest Medical Services: GP in Hawkshead and Ulverston (15 mins); A&E at Furness General Hospital, 15 miles.