This pretty 4-bedroom barn conversion on the Isle of Wight boasts lovely interiors, a long list of baby and toddler friendly gear and the added bonuses of award-winning cream teas and a handy all-weather pottery painting studio on the doorstep, plus chef-made family meals on request, and all at very reasonable rates - ideal!
The Old Stables is part of Chessell Pottery
Barns and guests are given a voucher to make and paint unique keepsakes, such
as prints of baby’s feet and hands, or an exclusive Emma Bridgewater pot. Guests
also get a discount in the Gift Barn, which is full of lovely things for grown-ups and
children, including the biggest range of Emma Bridgewater pottery on the
island, the pottery’s own Chessell Ware, Jellycat cuddly toys and home-made
There’s a licensed cafe at Chessell Pottery Barns too which has
won the coveted Best Island Cream Tea award for three years running and is really
family friendly, including a ‘Dragon’s Den’ area where parents can feed and
play with little ones. The staff will happily warm up baby bottles and the
home-made dishes are available in half portions, plus the chef can provide
afternoon tea, family meals and picnics with a bit of notice.
The Old Stables itself is a beautiful, spacious barn
conversion which has everything families could wish for and need, from travel
cots and baby gear to Emma Bridgwater melamine crockery. The owners have also
provided lots of toys, books and cars for children to play with and a wheelie
bug for toddlers to zoom around the underfloor-heated wood floors.
At one end of the open plan living area there are comfy
leather sofas, armchairs and a wood burning stove, but the 42” wall mounted
plasma TV is in a separate ‘snug’, so parents can enjoy some peace and quiet or
plug in the iPod, while children watch their favourites programmes or a family
At the other end of the living area is the Italian style
kitchen diner, including built in dishwasher, family size fridge freezer,
microwave, washing machine and dryer. From the kitchen, doors lead to private, enclosed
patios, with outdoor furniture, and children can also play on a large grassy
area or in the pottery’s pretty lawned garden, with outdoor games like a giant
Three of the bedrooms at The Old Stables are on the first
floor and an additional double bedroom is tucked up a spiral staircase is a
separate ‘wing’ of the house – so grandparents or friends can sleep in,
The Old Stables sleeps up to seven people plus babies and two
travel cots can be provided for any of the bedrooms. There is one room with a
king size bed, one twin room and one single room on the first floor and another
double bedroom in a separate ‘wing’, accessed via a spiral staircase. The main
bathroom is in the first floor, with a bath, over head shower and bundles of fluffy
towels. The house also has a downstairs WC with a walk in power shower, close
to the spiral staircase to the double bedroom.
The Isle of Wight is one of the gems of England’s South
Coast, less than 2 hours from London and a short ferry hop across from
Portsmouth across the Solent. The Old Stables is in the South West of the
Island, 4 miles from Yarmouth and not far from the jagged white Needles rocks,
but as the island is just 23 miles long and 13 miles wide, its many family attractions
are never far away.
Yarmouth is the nearest town
to The Old Stables with a bustling, historic harbour that’s
popular with the yachting fraternity, which means plenty of cafes, pubs and
restaurants, plus interesting little shops and stores for essential provisions.
Yarmouth also has a castle to explore and there are boat trips from the pier
and tours around the island on a paddle steamer.
Over half The Isle of Wight has been designated an Area of
Outstanding Natural Beauty including the countryside surrounding Chessell so
there are plenty of great walks from the doorstep to head off with a picnic. Everyone
can be a Chris Packham or Kate Humble too, keeping eyes peeled for special
birds and wildlife including super cute red squirrels, long eared owls,
woodpeckers and kingfishers – a red squirrel and kingfisher have even been
spotted at Chessell’s own pond. Serious bird watchers can also stake out the
RSPB bird hut at Newtown, (10 minutes drive) where a ranger is often on hand to
point out species such as Shelduck, Oystercatcher and Black-headed Gull.
Circling the Isle of Wight are 13 award-winning beaches plus
lots more coves and bays to discover. Compton Bay is the closest stretch of
sweeping sandy bay to The Old Stables (2 miles) and Brook Beach is one of the
islands popular spots for fossil hunting. As The Isle of Wight is also known as
‘Dinosaur Island’, anyone could stumble across a strange footprint in the rocks
at low tide or even discover prehistoric remains of an entirely new species!
Dinosaurs are also one of the attractions at the world’s first
family theme park, Blackgang Chine, which opened 170 years ago and still
delights children with its eccentric mix of rides, goblins, fairies, nursery
rhyme characters, cowboys and Indians. Other highlights for families around the
island include the classic seaside attractions on Shanklin Seafront, the
spectacular chairlifts at Needles Park, the rides and play areas at Robin Hill
Adventure Park, Godshill Model Village and Carisbrooke Castle.
Nearest Medical Services:
Doctors at Brookside Health Centre, Freshwater, 2.8miles. St Mary’s Hospital
A&E, approximately 9 miles away.