The Piggeries may not be the most charming name for a
holiday cottage but it’s somehow spot on for the playful, chilled out
atmosphere of this funky, brand new barn conversion in delicious Dorset.
At the risk of being a bit corny, BFB would even suggest
that families will be as happy as pigs in muck here, but without the muck of
course, because The Piggeries is gleaming in its newness, flooded with natural
daylight from floor to ceiling windows and finished in a fresh, contemporary
style. Being a big single-storey barn makes things a whole lot easier for luggage-laden
parents and little ones can toddle in and out, through the 7 metre sliding
glass doors, to play safely in the enclosed, 1.5 acre garden. A Wendy house,
sandpit, paddling pool, pop up play tent and garden games will keep children
amused day in day out, then a sunset sing song around the fire-pit (fireguard
provided), with bangers sizzling on the barbecue, should round things off
The owners have furnished and finished the Piggeries to
really high standards throughout, with flair and lovely quirky features like
the lime green washing basket lampshades in the kitchen. The hub of the home is
the airy open-plan living area and kitchen, with high raftered ceiling, a
chunky dining table for 8-10 people, comfy leather sofas around a wood-burning
stove and spectacular views through the panoramic sliding doors. With the
cheerful kitchen at one end, grown-ups can still be part of the party while
rustling up snacks and meals in a Masterchef style, with state of the art
appliances including ceramic range cooker, 5 burner hob and microwave. To dip
out on the cooking altogether, local caterer Scarlett Watts produces a range of
delicious one night wonders or dinner party menus for celebration occasions.
Besides the flat-screen TV and DVD player, the owners have
provided plenty of toys and books for all ages, plus The Piggeries has Wi Fi
throughout and iPod dock. The four bedrooms at The Piggeries are in line with a
luxury boutique hotel, with funky lamps, coloured bedspreads, 400 thread
Egyptian cotton linen and memory foam mattresses for a good night’s sleep. The
two ensuites, family bathroom and shower room are also cool and sleek, with
ceramics and tiling to designer standards.
Sleeping up to 8 people, The Piggeries is perfect for
extended families and friends. Two double bedrooms have an ensuite with a
shower, basin and WC. One bedroom has twin beds and the fourth has bunk beds. The
doubles and twin room have space for a cot and 1 wooden cot and 1 travel cot is
available. The house has a family bathroom with bath, shower, basin and wc plus
a separate shower room with basin and wc.
The Piggeries looks out across the quintessential Dorset
countryside of Blackmore Vale, close to the ancient hilltop market town of Shaftesbury,
where parents of a certain age will recognize the steep, cobbled Gold Hill from
the iconic Hovis adverts.
The whole county is renowned for its delicious local produce
and there are markets almost every day of the week in one town or village
nearby, besides superb farm shops and a wealth of fab places to eat out. The
Udder Farm Shop at Gillingham won best farm shop at the Taste of the West
Awards and offers a wide range of local produce, plus the on-site coffee shop
is a family favourite for its hearty Sunday roasts. Riverford and Goldhill organics will deliver
food boxes to The Piggeries as well as Waitrose and Asda from their stores in
Gillingham or Tesco in Shaftesbury. The local villages of Fontmell Magna and
Iwerne Minster also have village shops to pick up various essentials.
The owner of The Piggeries prides herself on having
thoroughly researched many of the local inns and restaurants and has a long
list of recommendations for families to try. The Fontmell at Fontmell Magna was
crowned South West Dining Pub of the year 2013 and is sure to be a hit with
children thanks to its new outdoor wood fired pizza ovens. Turnbulls in
Shaftesbury claims to be ‘the West Country’s finest cheesemonger, coffee shop
and bistro’ with its ‘Lazy Susan’s’ of English tapas a particular speciality.
Also in Shaftesbury, The Beggar’s Banquet cafe is a hip hang out that serves vegetarian
and vegan food to the soundtrack of eclectic live music.
Dorset is crammed with fun family things to see and do, with
a wide variety less than half an hour’s drive from The Piggeries, including
Farmer Palmers Farm Park, Bush Farm Bison Centre, Honeybrook activity farm and
Stourhead. The bigger attractions of Longleat, Monkey World, Corfe Castle,
Swanage Steam Railway and Stonehenge are also within an hour’s drive, as well
as the fossil strewn Jurassic Coast and soft sand, blue-flag beaches like Sandbanks
which boasts that it’s the best beach in the UK.
Nearest Medical Services (GP & A&E): Abbet
View Medical centre & Shaftesbury hospital with A&E