Hagg Hill Tea Rooms – A Coffee with a Difference

Set in admist stunning scenery surrounded by open fields and woodland, Hagg Hill enjoys fantastic views and access to the Derwent Valley Nature Park, where there is plenty of wildlife to be found and some good walking trails for all abilities.

   

The newly opened Hagg Hill Tea Rooms, which is conveniently located just off Spa Well Roadin Winlaton Mill, is the perfect place to catch up with a friend over a coffee and cake or after a walk with family or friends to pop in for some well deserved light refreshments.  There’s a great selection of refreshments and sweet treats to tempt you.

   

What’s more while you’re enjoying your coffee you can look at some stunning creations from the glass artist Rena Holford, who along with running a successful livery yard with her family, also runs Hagg Hill Glass Studio. There is a selection of her works on display around the tea rooms and you can purchase any of the items on display. They make a great gift for someone special and are certainly a unique gift idea. Of course, you may also be tempted to pick up a treat for yourself – I can guarantee you may not be able to resist!

Also during your visit to Hagg Hill you have the wonderful opportunity to see a ceramic artist and carpenter at work. A selection of their creations is also available for you to have a look at and should you wish to you can also pick up a special gift.

 

 

For more information, on opening times and location, please visit: www.hagghillridingcentre.co.uk or call 0191 414 2069.

Northumberlandia – The Lady of the North

Set in 19 Hectares of public park this is the world’s largest human form sculptured into the landscape.

Northumberlandia was created by a world renowned artist called Charles Jencks. The sculpture was created to transform the old Shotton surface coal mine and was filled with 1.5 million tones of rock, clay and soil. The sculpture stands 100 feet high and is ¼ mile long with 4 miles of pathways around this magnificent ‘lady’ sculpture.

The inspiration for the landform comes from the Cheviot Hills which can be seen in the distance, the natural shapes and curves of the Cheviot Hills have been brought forward into the foreground to make the ‘Lady of the North’.

One of our guests staying in the area, recently visited Northumberlandia and this is what they had to say about their trip:

“The” Lady of the North” is well worth a visit, easy to find & free parking.  It’s about 4 miles if you go all round & stand on every bit of her but even a non walker like me made it & enjoyed it. Lunch at the pub just up the road is a good place to go too. Well recommended.”

Want to know more?

More information about Northumberlandia, can be found on the website www.northumberlandia.com.

How to find us

Northumberlandia is next to the town of Cramlington in Northumberland, just North of Newcastle and is only a few minutes from the A1.

By car – if you have a satnav please use postcode NE23 8AU or directions can be easily found through Google maps.

By train – the nearest station is Cramlington approximately 2.5 miles away.

By bus – the following buses pass the bus stops adjacent to the roundabout near the pedestrian entrance to Northumberlandia.

Want to tell us about a great place you have visited?

If you have visited somewhere special in the Northumberland area recently and would like to share it with us, get in touch with me at: amanda@cottagesinnorthumberland.co.uk and I’ll be to post it on our blog along with any photos you are happy to share.

 

A step back in time at a Georgian Country Fair at Beamish Museum

Thursday 30th May to Sunday 2nd June 2013

On Saturday 1st June we decided to make a trip to the award winning Beamish Museum visitor attraction in County Durham. Every year they hold a Georgian Country Fair, giving visitors a real experience of Georgian life.

On arriving at Beamish you are warmly greeted by Beamish hosts who are dressed in period clothing giving you a real sense of stepping back in time.

 

 

The Georgian Country Fair was held at the Pockerley Waggonway which is literally just a 5 minute walk along a path from the main entrance. The walk to the Pockerley Wagonway is very scenic with lots of open fields and woodland areas.

The fair was full of the hussle and bustle with lots of entertainment for all the family to enjoy including a display by the The Durham Light Infantry 68th Regiment, lavender brooch making, a Punch and Judy Show, a fire dancer and traditional regional music from the Northumbrian Piper. 

 

There were lots of traditional Georgian games for the children (and big children!) to enjoy such as a swing boat ride, coconut shy and guess the weight of the pig (who I must say was rather large!) My little boy was even lucky enough to win a coconut after knocking one down, he was very proud of his win!

 

The children could also apply to become a new servant of the Squire of Pockerley. My daughter and her friend decided they would like to apply for this job so they carefully filled in the form including details of which post they were applying for (in their case it was to be a house maid). They then had to say how many days holiday they would need and how much money they wanted to be paid (much consideration and thought went into answering these important questions!) and the reason why you thought you would be good for this job. My daughter answered with ‘I am good at tidying’, which later proved to be a winning statement.

The Squire then made an announcement that everyone who wanted to apply for a job with them should gather round for an interview (or grilling!!). If you were lucky enough to be employed by the stern Squire of Pockerley, you were given a gold coin (of the chocolate variety!). Needless to say, the gold coin didn’t last long.

There was also an opportunity to dress up in traditional costumes, stroke a ferret, say hello to the lamas, have your silhouette portrait cut and buy a selection of local produce including fruit, vegetables and bakery goods.

There was also a selection of market stalls to browse selling a range of traditional goods including, games, trinkets and scented goods. I did purchase a couple of lavender bags for my two children thinking these would be great next to their beds at bed time to help them sleep better. However I had no need to worry. After a fun day out at Beamish they were both fast asleep in no time, likewise so were we!

A Family day out in the Simonside Hills

My family and I decided to have a day out in Northumberland during the May half term holidays. It was a lovely warm sunny day so we enjoyed a picnic in the woodland area before setting off on our walk (or adventure as I describe it to my two children, who don’t like the word ‘walk’)!

Following the red arrows, we embarked on our 4 mile adventure to climb the Simonside Hills. The woodland path is very scenic and there were two large magnificent craggy rocks that you can see from the path.

 

 

After about ½ a mile, you pass through a gated entrance where you start to ascend up a rocky pathway (ensure you have good footwear as this part of the walk can be quite muddy in places!)

 

 

At the top of this path, you can see the towering craggy Simonside Hills.

Approaching the foot of the hills, there is a very rocky path which leads straight up to the hills plateau. This path can be quite precarious in places, but it is well worth the effort!

When we arrived at the top, the views were amazing and it goes without saying there is a real sense of personal achievement. We stopped at the top for a well earned breather and drink. The children loved the mound of rocks at the top and scrambled up the top to place their stones on the top.

 

 

 

 

The walk across the top of the hills was great and there were another couple of huge interesting rocks protruding from the hillside.

 

 

 

Word of advice, stick to the path as there are a few muddly bogs as our dog found out!


I loved seeing the cotton grass on the marsh land – it is not often that you find it on walks unless you are very high up.

 

 

 

The walk back, is always good as you are on the descent. However it all proved too much for my little boy who fell asleep on his Dad’s shoulders whilst getting a piggy back.

The walk through the woodland is magical, especially with the sunlight dappling on the woodland stream. Our dog had a bit of clean up in the stream before we finished of the last ¼ mile walk back to the car.

 

 

 

 

 

Needless to say, a great day out and we certainly all slept well that night!

My top 10 pubs in Northumberland

From harbour views to the rolling Cheviot Hills, Northumberland offers family friendly, welcoming pubs and holiday cottages. As an owner myself, of a lovely static caravan in Beadnell, I’ve been able to experience Northumberland’s glorious views and friendly local pubs. Here are a few of my favourites:

1. The Craster Arms – Beadnell

Situated in the heart of the little town Beadnell, The Craster Arms offers a range of traditional meals, made with fresh local produce and a selection of local and continental beers and ales, as well as a comprehensive wine list.

Fancy a drink and maybe something to eat to top off a great day, the Craster Arms friendly, has excellent food and refreshing drinks. From watching your kids safely run around in the beer garden to watching a range of local bands inside the pub, The Craster Arms has much to offer.

The Craster offers events for the young and the old, from the famous Crastonbury, to the Olympic Games and the beer festival!

Bit of history

“The Craster Arms Hotel 15th – 18th Century. Purchased from John Swinburn in 1563 by Thomas Forster of Adderstone, who’s son Thomas Forster the younger, left Beadnell Tower by will in 1587 to his eldest son Matthew. Successions of John Forsters followed and were the owners when the 18th century opened. The Old Tower by 1818 had come to serve as back premises of a public house once called The Bull Inn and now known as The Craster Arms Hotel.”

Ranked 3.5/5 by customers Trip Adviser.

“The best burgers in all of Northumberland!” – My own opinion.

“The best hospitality in Northumberland – All round” – Nick from Harogate.

“Fantastic location” – Afer from sterling.

“Fantastic weekend away” – Happy wanderer from Liversege.

“Amazing Country Pub, friendly staff, great atmosphere”  – Travel8955 from Newcastle, Upon Tyne.

2. The Astley Arms – Seaton Sluice   

Located on the seafront, in the coastal town of Seaton Sluice, the Astley Arms is famous for its three meat carvery. This family friendly pub and restaurant offers a wide range of beers and ales and a selection of fine wine. With great value food that won’t break the bank and even ice cream for the kids or a cheeky chocolate brownie or cake for the chocolate lovers. 

Bit of history

The poignant tale told on one wall is of the party of submariners who popped in for a drink on Christmas Eve, 1939, and bought raffle tickets. Petty Officer ‘Tug’ Wilson won a bottle of whisky and asked the landlady to keep it for him because he was due aboard HMS Sealion in the morning. He never returned. HMS Sealion hit a mine and was lost with all hands. The whisky, kept for 30 years, is now in the Royal Navy Submarine Museum in Gosport, Hampshire. On a day like today, looking out at the grey sea and sky, you are inclined to raise your glass to the brave men who set sail from nearby Blyth so we can enjoy pleasures like Sunday dinner in a nice place like this.

Rated 3.5/5 by the customers on Trip adviser.

“Good value for money, nice location!” – Stephen from Newcastle Upon Tyne.

“Cheap and delicious”Gemma from Northumberland.

“Good Value for Money – lovely day out!”Caroline from Newcastle Upon Tyne.

“GOOD SUNDAY DINNER!” Woodnut1962 from Gateshead.

3. The Bamburgh Castle Inn – Seahouses

Above the old lime kilns on the harbour, in the popular seaside resort Seahouses,   The Bamburgh Castle Inn offers unbelievable views and superb food. From real ales and a selection of wines, to a large spacious beer garden, The Bamburgh Castle Inn caters for all.

Ranked 3 stars by the AA.

“We could not believe the views from the hotel – they have to be the best in England.”

– B Wright

“What a lovely place! Cracking views and smashing staff.”

– The Haywoods

“What a stay. We’ll be back next year but we’ve told so many of our friends what good value you are that we had better book early!

– N Cunningham

“Also a big thank you to everyone for making our stay great. The food, the place, the views – everything smashing – missing the views already. So nice to feel at home and welcome which all the staff made us feel.”

–  Libby and Tony Johnson

4.     The Ship Inn – Low Newton

Located in a unique coastal village square, the Ship Inn offers a great selection of food, including fresh seafood and a good range of beers from its own micro brewery, with an excellent outside seating area from which you can enjoy beautiful coastal scenery and plan your healthy walk to dunstanburgh castle. Great for dogs too. 

Look on their website for an upcoming list of bands and events.

Bit of History

I first came to Low Newton and The Ship Inn in May 1999. I wanted to move away from Hertfordshire where I had lived for the last thirty years. I needed to earn a living and I had heard that there was a pub for sale in a village by the sea. I had done various jobs in my life and run my own business, but the one business I knew I didn’t want to run was a pub! However – I came, I saw and Low Newton conquered!!

“Lovely setting at the end of a walk along the most beautiful bay.” – Lois M from Northumberland.

 5.     Meadow House – Berwick Upon-Tweed

This is an unusual pub, known as ‘The First and last pub in England’, because it is situated only a mile away from the Scottish border, in the lively town of Berwick.  The Meadow house offers classic English cuisine, made with fresh local produce, such as; prawn cocktail and fish and chips, how could you get better than that?

It’s famous for its homemade ice-cream made by Edith Hearn the chef, which tickles the taste buds of all who enjoy this tasty pudding. With its unique English décor and traditional menu, some may say it’s an English gem.

Rated 4.5/5 by the customers on Trip adviser and ranked #2 out of 43 pubs and restaurants in Berwick.

“outstanding food yet again!” – Mark R from Bognor Regis.

“enjoyable food and faultless” - Stevenge.

“A really enjoyable meal as always.” – Sus09.

“Excellent food, good value too.” – Frank from Wishaw.

6.     The Salmon Inn – Berwick Upon-Tweed

Situated 2 miles south of Berwick, this traditional English pub offers a selection of local and continental lagers and ales and various fine wines. If you’re feeling peckish, why not have a bar snack or try a pub meal? How about sitting down to a hot bowl of freshly made soup or digging into a Sunday roast, either way your sure to enjoy the food at the Salmon.

Rated 4.5/10 by the customers on Trip adviser and #7 out of 43 pubs and restaurants in Berwick.

“Lovely Sunday lunch” – Harveysangel from Newcastle Upon-Tyne

“Superb food at a very reasonable price.” – Layces from Sussex

“Brilliant meal every time” – Martin Cold from Northumberland

“Fantastic small restaurant”Master of ninga from Edinburgh

 

7.     The Schooner – Alnmouth

This unique 17th century coaching Inn, rich in history and set in the heart of the coastal town Alnmouth, offers friendly staff and a cold pint or glass of wine at the end of a busy day exploring Northumberland.

Anyone that wants high quality food, at a reasonable price, will enjoy a meal at the Schooner. The Schooner is famous for its haunting’s and famous figures such as Charles Dickens, John Wesley, Basil Rathbone and King George III all said to have stayed. If you’re a ghost lover, you will love the ghost hunt with resident medium Ray Boker, its not for the faint hearted.

Bit of history 

Having been around for the past 300 years, the Schooner, which has been listed as a coaching inn, is steeped in history and has over 3,000 reported sightings of ghosts.  The name Schooner derives from a character of sailing ship (using fore and aft sails on more than one mast), first used by the Dutch in the 16th and 17th centuries and then developed in the Americas from the 18th century onwards.

Schooners were cargo vessels, capable of both ocean and coastal travel. As well as a legitimate trading port, the village of Alnmouth was also a haven for smugglers and vagabonds. Such was the reputation of Alnmouth that John Wesley, the founder of The Methodist Church, commented that it was “a small seaport town famous for its wickedness”.

There has been many tales of murders, suicides and even massacres. The corridors have said to be roaming with over 60 individual spirits, people have even said to have seen a women standing in the windows of several of the top bedrooms, as they’ve been walking by, but do you believe it? Why don’t you come explore the inn for yourself? 

Rated 3.5/10 by the customers on Trip adviser and #7 out of 10 pubs and restaurants in Alnmouth.

“The high light of both our nights had to be the ghost hunt with Ray Bokor, we seen & heard things we couldn’t have ever hoped for.” – Lisa W from Lynemouth

“hidden gem not to be missed”- Christine Clerey from Newcastle upon-Tyne

“Wonderful Staff”- Expatindoha from Northumberland

“GREAT NIGHT”- Fiona S from Ashington

“excellent meal” – Erica E from Newcastle upon-Tyne

8.     The Red Lion Inn – Alnmouth

A traditional country Inn set in the heart of the coastal village of Alnmouth. With its magnificent views from the garden, of the Aln Estuary and opposite an old medieval church, you will be able to experience the beauty of the coastline and the adventures of Alnwick castle.

Why don’t you sample their excellent food or maybe just pop in for a quiet drink from the selection of beers, ales and fine wines.

Rated 4.5/5 by the customers and Trip adviser, and #2 out of 10 pubs and restaurants in Alnmouth.

“Good pub food, good beer and hospitality” Kahjm from Wilmslow

“relaxed and friendly”ProfH_55 from Newcastle upon-Tyne

“Amazing find!!!!”Anne H from Bolton.

“Great place to stay, eat and drink”ferretts_sheffield from Sheffield

“A lovely spot”Annebl from Leamington Spa

9.     The Lindisfarne Inn – Beal

Right in the heart of the beautiful country side of Northumberland, but yet only a 5 minute drive from Holy Island, Lindisfarne offers a refreshing drink, excellent food and a warm open fire, at the end of a busy day.A warm welcoming awaits you in a real Northumberland pub, with hot and cold drinks available and locally brewed ales, house wine or even a bottle of Champaign. 

For all you rock and roll lovers, or even comedian lovers, the star of iconic rock band Lindisfarne and world-famous music director, actor and stand-up comedian Brendan Healy will be appearing at The Lindisfarne Inn on Saturday December 8th 2012.  

Ranked 4.5/5 by the customers on Trip adviser and #24 of 51pubs and inns in Berwick-upon-Tweed.

Good end to the day”Bentley8 from Milton Keynes

“Fantastic!”Pamela G from Grimsby

“The manager and staff could have been more welcoming and throughout our stay
nothing was to much for them.”
– Reg W from Leeds.

“Excellence and quality” – Kev17 from Aberdeen.

10.  The Hope and Anchor – Alnmouth

If you looking for small, friendly and welcoming, The Hope and Anchor is the place to go, set in the beautiful town of Alnmouth, its one of the most historical buildings in Alnmouth, with beaches and historic castles near by, it’s rich in history and great to keep the kids entertained. Why don’t you enjoy a pint and a light lunch in the bar while you plan your day exploring the miles of coastline? There’s always things happening in this small busy town, so plenty to keep the kids entertained.

Ranked 4/5 by customers on Trip adviser.

“Very Good Food, Welcoming Atmosphere” – Rarvblue from Yorkshire

“Full of character and friendly staff”  - John G from York

“Top Village Pub” – Harveydog22 from the North

“Excellent beach” – Barbara from Newcastle upon-Tyne

Even though these are just a few of my personal favorites, they are not the only friendly pubs Northumberland has to offer. Have a personal favorite that I haven’t talked about and feel it should be mentioned? Blog back to me and I will be sure to give it credit.

My Top 10 pubs in Northumberland

From harbour views to the rolling Cheviot Hills, Northumberland offers family friendly, welcoming pubs and holiday cottages. As an owner myself, of a lovely static caravan in Beadnell, I’ve been able to experience Northumberland’s glorious views and friendly local pubs. Here are a few of my favourites:

1. The Craster Arms – Beadnell

Situated in the heart of the little town Beadnell, The Craster Arms offers a range of traditional meals, made with fresh local produce and a selection of local and continental beers and ales, as well as a comprehensive wine list. Fancy a drink and maybe something to eat to top off a great day, the Craster Arms friendly, has excellent food and refreshing drinks. From watching your kids safely run around in the beer garden to watching a range of local bands inside the pub, The Craster Arms has much to offer.

The Craster offers events for the young and the old, from the famous Crastonbury, to the Olympic Games and the beer festival!

Bit of history

“The Craster Arms Hotel 15th – 18th Century. Purchased from John Swinburn in 1563 by Thomas Forster of Adderstone, who’s son Thomas Forster the younger, left Beadnell Tower by will in 1587 to his eldest son Matthew. Successions of John Forsters followed and were the owners when the 18th century opened. The Old Tower by 1818 had come to serve as back premises of a public house once called The Bull Inn and now known as The Craster Arms Hotel.”

Ranked 3.5/5 by customers Trip Adviser.

“The best burgers in all of Northumberland!” – My own opinion.

“The best hospitality in Northumberland – All round” – Nick from Harogate.

“Fantastic location” – Afer from sterling.

“Fantastic weekend away” – Happy wanderer from Liversege.

“Amazing Country Pub, friendly staff, great atmosphere”  – Travel8955 from Newcastle, Upon Tyne

2. The Astley Arms – Seaton Sluice   

Located on the seafront, in the coastal town of Seaton Sluice, the Astley Arms is famous for its three meat carvery. This family friendly pub and restaurant offers a wide range of beers and ales and a selection of fine wine. With great value food that won’t break the bank and even ice cream for the kids or a cheeky chocolate brownie or cake for the chocolate lovers. 

Bit of history

The poignant tale told on one wall is of the party of submariners who popped in for a drink on Christmas Eve, 1939, and bought raffle tickets. Petty Officer ‘Tug’ Wilson won a bottle of whisky and asked the landlady to keep it for him because he was due aboard HMS Sealion in the morning. He never returned. HMS Sealion hit a mine and was lost with all hands. The whisky, kept for 30 years, is now in the Royal Navy Submarine Museum in Gosport, Hampshire. On a day like today, looking out at the grey sea and sky, you are inclined to raise your glass to the brave men who set sail from nearby Blyth so we can enjoy pleasures like Sunday dinner in a nice place like this.

Rated 3.5/5 by the customers on Trip adviser.

“Good value for money, nice location!” – Stephen from Newcastle Upon Tyne.

“Cheap and delicious”Gemma from Northumberland.

“Good Value for Money – lovely day out!”Caroline from Newcastle Upon Tyne.

“GOOD SUNDAY DINNER!” Woodnut1962 from Gateshead.

3. The Bamburgh Castle Inn – Seahouses

Above the old lime kilns on the harbour, in the popular seaside resort Seahouses,   The Bamburgh Castle Inn offers unbelievable views and superb food. From real ales and a selection of wines, to a large spacious beer garden, The Bamburgh Castle Inn caters for all.

Ranked 3 stars by the AA.

“We could not believe the views from the hotel – they have to be the best in England.”

– B Wright

 

“What a lovely place! Cracking views and smashing staff.”

– The Haywoods

“What a stay. We’ll be back next year but we’ve told so many of our friends what good value you are that we had better book early!

– N Cunningham

“Also a big thank you to everyone for making our stay great. The food, the place, the views – everything smashing – missing the views already. So nice to feel at home and welcome which all the staff made us feel.”

–  Libby and Tony Johnson

4.     The Ship Inn – Low Newton

Located in a unique coastal village square, the Ship Inn offers a great selection of food, including fresh seafood and a good range of beers from its own micro brewery, with an excellent outside seating area from which you can enjoy beautiful coastal scenery and plan your healthy walk to dunstanburgh castle. Great for dogs too. Look on their website for an upcoming list of bands and events.

Bit of History

I first came to Low Newton and The Ship Inn in May 1999. I wanted to move away from Hertfordshire where I had lived for the last thirty years. I needed to earn a living and I had heard that there was a pub for sale in a village by the sea. I had done various jobs in my life and run my own business, but the one business I knew I didn’t want to run was a pub! However – I came, I saw and Low Newton conquered!!

“Lovely setting at the end of a walk along the most beautiful bay.” – Lois M from Northumberland.

5.     Meadow House – Berwick Upon-Tweed

This is an unusual pub, known as ‘The First and last pub in England’, because it is situated only a mile away from the Scottish border, in the lively town of Berwick.  The Meadow house offers classic English cuisine, made with fresh local produce, such as; prawn cocktail and fish and chips, how could you get better than that?

It’s famous for its homemade ice-cream made by Edith Hearn the chef, which tickles the taste buds of all who enjoy this tasty pudding. With its unique English décor and traditional menu, some may say it’s an English gem.

Rated 4.5/5 by the customers on Trip adviser and ranked #2 out of 43 pubs and restaurants in Berwick.

“outstanding food yet again!” – Mark R from Bognor Regis.

“enjoyable food and faultless” - Stevenge.

“A really enjoyable meal as always.” – Sus09.

“Excellent food, good value too.” – Frank from Wishaw.

6.    The Salmon Inn – Berwick Upon-Tweed

Situated 2 miles south of Berwick, this traditional English pub offers a selection of local and continental lagers and ales and various fine wines. If you’re feeling peckish, why not have a bar snack or try a pub meal? How about sitting down to a hot bowl of freshly made soup or digging into a Sunday roast, either way your sure to enjoy the food at the Salmon.

Rated 4.5/10 by the customers on Trip adviser and #7 out of 43 pubs and restaurants in Berwick.

“Lovely Sunday lunch” – Harveysangel from Newcastle Upon-Tyne

“Superb food at a very reasonable price.” – Layces from Sussex

“Brilliant meal every time” – Martin Cold from Northumberland

“Fantastic small restaurant”Master of ninga from Edinburgh

 

7.     The Schooner – Alnmouth

This unique 17th century coaching Inn, rich in history and set in the heart of the coastal town Alnmouth, offers friendly staff and a cold pint or glass of wine at the end of a busy day exploring Northumberland. Anyone that wants high quality food, at a reasonable price, will enjoy a meal at the Schooner. The Schooner is famous for its haunting’s and famous figures such as Charles Dickens, John Wesley, Basil Rathbone and King George III all said to have stayed. If you’re a ghost lover, you will love the ghost hunt with resident medium Ray Boker, its not for the faint hearted.

Bit of history 

Having been around for the past 300 years, the Schooner, which has been listed as a coaching inn, is steeped in history and has over 3,000 reported sightings of ghosts.  The name Schooner derives from a character of sailing ship (using fore and aft sails on more than one mast), first used by the Dutch in the 16th and 17th centuries and then developed in the Americas from the 18th century onwards.

Schooners were cargo vessels, capable of both ocean and coastal travel. As well as a legitimate trading port, the village of Alnmouth was also a haven for smugglers and vagabonds. Such was the reputation of Alnmouth that John Wesley, the founder of The Methodist Church, commented that it was “a small seaport town famous for its wickedness”.

There has been many tales of murders, suicides and even massacres. The corridors have said to be roaming with over 60 individual spirits, people have even said to have seen a women standing in the windows of several of the top bedrooms, as they’ve been walking by, but do you believe it? Why don’t you come explore the inn for yourself? 

Rated 3.5/10 by the customers on Trip adviser and #7 out of 10 pubs and restaurants in Alnmouth.

“The high light of both our nights had to be the ghost hunt with Ray Bokor, we seen & heard things we couldn’t have ever hoped for.” – Lisa W from Lynemouth

“hidden gem not to be missed”- Christine Clerey from Newcastle upon-Tyne

 “Wonderful Staff”- Expatindoha from Northumberland

“GREAT NIGHT”- Fiona S from Ashington

 “excellent meal” – Erica E from Newcastle upon-Tyne

8.     The Red Lion Inn – Alnmouth

A traditional country Inn set in the heart of the coastal village of Alnmouth. With its magnificent views from the garden, of the Aln Estuary and opposite an old medieval church, you will be able to experience the beauty of the coastline and the adventures of Alnwick castle. Why don’t you sample their excellent food or maybe just pop in for a quiet drink from the selection of beers, ales and fine wines.

Rated 4.5/5 by the customers and Trip adviser, and #2 out of 10 pubs and restaurants in Alnmouth.

“Good pub food, good beer and hospitality” Kahjm from Wilmslow

“relaxed and friendly”ProfH_55 from Newcastle upon-Tyne

“Amazing find!!!!”Anne H from Bolton.

“Great place to stay, eat and drink”ferretts_sheffield from Sheffield

“A lovely spot”Annebl from Leamington Spa

9.     The Lindisfarne Inn – Beal

Right in the heart of the beautiful country side of Northumberland, but yet only a 5 minute drive from Holy Island, Lindisfarne offers a refreshing drink, excellent food and a warm open fire, at the end of a busy day.A warm welcoming awaits you in a real Northumberland pub, with hot and cold drinks available and locally brewed ales, house wine or even a bottle of Champaign. 

For all you rock and roll lovers, or even comedian lovers, the star of iconic rock band Lindisfarne and world-famous music director, actor and stand-up comedian Brendan Healy will be appearing at The Lindisfarne Inn on Saturday December 8th 2012.  

Ranked 4.5/5 by the customers on Trip adviser and #24 of 51pubs and inns in Berwick-upon-Tweed.

“Good end to the day”Bentley8 from Milton Keynes

“Fantastic!”Pamela G from Grimsby

“The manager and staff could have been more welcoming and throughout our stay
nothing was to much for them.”
– Reg W from Leeds.

“Excellence and quality” – Kev17 from Aberdeen.

10.  The Hope and Anchor

If you looking for small, friendly and welcoming, The Hope and Anchor is the place to go, set in the beautiful town of Alnmouth, its one of the most historical buildings in Alnmouth, with beaches and historic castles near by, it’s rich in history and great to keep the kids entertained. Why don’t you enjoy a pint and a light lunch in the bar while you plan your day exploring the miles of coastline? There’s always things happening in this small busy town, so plenty to keep the kids entertained.

Ranked 4/5 by customers on Trip adviser.

“Very Good Food, Welcoming Atmosphere” – Rarvblue from Yorkshire

“Full of character and friendly staff”  - John G from York

“Top Village Pub” – Harveydog22 from the North

“Excellent beach” – Barbara from Newcastle upon-Tyne

Even though these are just a few of my personal favorites, they are not the only friendly pubs Northumberland has to offer. Have a personal favorite that I haven’t talked about and feel it should be mentioned? Blog back to me and I will be sure to give it credit.

A holiday with a difference!

Apple Tree and Lime Tree Lodge’s are both set within the tranquil grounds of Old Swarland Hall, a 16th Century, Grade 2 listed Georgian building which also hosts a working farm with famous pedigree ‘Limousin’ Cattle and ‘Texel’ Sheep.

They are bespoke designed properties built to the highest specifications using solid logs from Finland and have been awarded the four star Gold Award by Visit Britain. Sleeping 6, Apple Tree and Lime Tree Lodge’s are fully equipped and furnished to the highest standards.

Situated on a family run working farm breeding commercial livestock as well as pedigree, award winning cattle and sheep. Guests can enjoy a guided tour of the farm allowing children and adults the opportunity to learn first-hand how a modern farm is run.

For families with young children, there is plenty to do with a safe, enclosed play area within the landscaped grounds of the lodges. There are swings, slides and a climbing frame. They may also be lucky enough to see the cattle and sheep close up and new born lambs in spring time in the adjoining fields.

Ideally located for exploring Northumberland’s coastline, castles and scenery, Lime Tree and Apple Tree lodges offer you the opportunity to relax, unwind and explore the region.

Just over a mile to the west of the village, by the Swarland Burn, is the ruin of the Overgrass Tower, a medieval tower house dating from the 14th or 15th century.

Out and about in the Swarland area

In the village of Swarland, you will find a post office and village shop. For those with an interest in sports There is lots to choose from in the village including an astro turf bowling green, 3 tennis courts, a 5 aside court, football field, equestrian centre and the Percy Wood Golf Course. There is also a Working Men’s Club in the village and every year there is a Quoits competition which is affectionately claimed by locals to be the ‘Quoits World Championships’.

You are only 10 minutes from Alnwick by car (N.B we offer our guests discounted entry to Alnwick Castle and Gardens) and Rothbury is only 15 minutes away. There are a local butchers and a delicatessen in nearby Longframlington. You can also buy bread, fruit and vegetable from here. A couple of miles away in Felton, you will find an artisan bakery, a local shop open until 8pm as well as a post office and coffee shop,

There are plenty of good restaurants to choose from in the area including the renowned Cook & Barker in Newton on the Moor (a couple of miles), The Granby in Longframlington, The Anglers Arms etc.

 

 

 

Find out More…..

For more information about these lodges please visit us online at:

http://www.cottagesinnorthumberland.co.uk/property-details.aspx?id=137

you can call us on: 0191 231 3020

or email: enquiries@cottagesinnorthumberland.co.uk

Up on Yeavering Bell

Kirknewton is a small village settlement way up on the northern edge of the Cheviot Hills, it has a lovely old church, a village hall and the houses look like they belong in the rugged landscape, sparkling in the Spring sunshine. We had arranged a linear walk for our customers today; a taxi would take us back to the village of Kirknewton from our finishing point in the delightful market town of Wooler.

This area of Northumberland Ad Gefrin has a remarkable history, which can be explored on the internet at www.gefrin.com the website will give you an insight into the historic landscape and the different peoples who occupied this land over many centuries.

The walk begins gently and winds its way around West Hill, which like many of the hills in the Cheviots has its own prehistoric settlement, in this case a small Iron or Bronze Age hill fort. We paused by a derelict barn, which seemed to me be a perfect place for owls to live or roost in, sure enough, a scattering of owl pellets on the floor confirmed this, no owls there today though, but definitely one to watch in the future. We heard a cuckoo at this point too and it wasn’t long before we saw this reclusive bird, swooping across the valley where it found a new perch and continued to call to potential mates.

We joined St. Cuthbert’s Way www.stcuthbertsway.info that marvellous long distance path linking Melrose to the Holy Island of Lindisfarne. Some 60 miles in length, it crosses the Border, winds its way over hills, through woodlands and down to the Heritage Coast. Either the tarmac Causeway or the Pilgrim’s Way across the sand takes you to the finishing point at Lindisfarne Priory, www.holy-island.info for more information.

The high point of our walk today was the summit of Yeavering Bell, which at 361 metres or about 1000ft above sea level sounds a bit daunting, but in the end a steady pace took us all to the top, where we stopped for lunch and a well-earned break. The views from up here are very good indeed; we could see a long way into Scotland and all the way out to the coast and it was well worth the effort to get here. Yeavering Bell has of course got its own Iron Age Hill Fort, said to be the second largest by area in England. You walk through the remnants of the stone built ramparts on the way to the top of the hill, still clearly visible after thousands of years, a monument to the men and women who built it. One final point on Yeavering Bell, we had hoped to see some of the wild Cheviot goats somewhere on the hill, we weren’t disappointed. In the gully at the foot of the hill were several nanny goats and much to the delight of everyone, lots of kids as well, photographs were duly taken.

After descending Yeavering Bell, our path took us along the edge of White Law, before we turned towards a feature called Tom Tallon’s Crag, who was he I wonder? Briefly, the term Law, means hill, from the Anglo-Saxon Hlaw of Hlw. There are lots ‘Laws’ in the Border regions, none of which have anything to do with the legal term.

Then it was back onto St. Cuthbert’s Way, over moor, through pasture and woodland, eventually arriving at Wooler Common, almost the end of the journey. It had been a hot and sunny day, so the thought of a pint in one of Wooler’s many pubs spurred us on and we soon arrived in the town, the end of our walk along the northern edge of the Cheviot Hills.

If you like the sound of this walk, it’s one of many that we do, then please visit our website at www.footsteps-in-northumberland.co.uk and get in touch to book your own adventure with Footsteps – walking the beauty of Northumberland.

A Walk by Patrick Norris of Footsteps – walking the beauty of Northumberland.

The perfect cottage holiday in Northumberland

Northumberland coastline

Northumberland truly is something special with miles of stunning coastline, beautiful sandy beaches historic castles and the vast unspoilt Northumberland National Park.
As a region, Northumberland has become an increasingly popular holiday destination for those wanting to find some peace and quiet, but still want plenty to do. There are lots of picturesque coastal villages along the Northumberland coast including Seahouses and Beadnell , which provide an ideal base from which to explore the Northumberland coast and countryside.

All our coastal cottages are within walking distance to beaches. There is one hundred miles of unspoiled coastline providing plenty of great walks, especially for dog owners. For the more adventurous, there is a great range of water sporting activities and for golf lovers, you could take part in the Three Castles Golf Tournament happening this July at some of Northumberland’s top golf courses.

For those looking for a more relaxing place to retreat, as one of our guests, you could visit Doxford Hall’s prestigious Leisure club and indulge in either a discounted spa package or a relaxing swim in the pool. One thing is for sure, you will never be short of great days out as we have negotiated some superb offers and discounts with some of Northumberland’s top attractions such as Alnwick Gardens and Bamburgh Castle.

We have a selection of cottages on the Northumberland coast ranging from traditional fisherman’s cottages to state of the art luxury modern apartments. We also have a good selection of dog friendly cottages. One of our more traditional cottages, The Fisherman’s Cottage can be found in the old part of Seahouses. The cottage has been recently renovated but still retains a lot of its original charm. With its cosy log burning stove and its ideal location being only a few steps from the harbour and village, this cottage provides a cosy retreat for any couple looking to escape the stresses of modern living or simply wanting a change of scenery.

Further inland, we have a great selection of cottages surrounded by valleys and hills, notably the popular Simonside and Cheviot Hills which are popular destinations for walkers and for those interested in stately home’s, the National Trust’s Cragside Estate, once owned by Lord Armstrong is just a short drive away and is the perfect place to indulge in an afternoon cream tea!

In a small hamlet called Netherton (near Rothbury), we have a selection of 6 luxury holiday cottages, which were converted from a grand 19th Century stone built farm steading, once part of the Cragside Estate. Guests staying here are free to enjoy the plentiful open spaces around the cottages including the private tennis courts and the nearby stream. There is also lots of wildlife to be seen from these cottages including, otters, deer and kingfishers.

Wherever you choose to stay in Northumberland you will never be far from great places to explore, superb restaurants, stunning scenery and breath taking views. Take a look at our website: www.cottagesinnorthumberland.co.uk and choose from over 80 properties.

We look forward to welcoming you to Northumberland soon.

A very happy guest at Lindisfarne View

Lindisfarne View was very comfortable as well as being very well situated. Everything that was (or could have been) needed was there.

The cottage was very clean and tidy and it was very nice that cleaning products and equipment were available.

Considering the excellent location, the price was fair.

The service from Cottages in Northumberland was excellent. Very prompt and helpful and I would not hesitate to use you again, or recommend you to others.

We were very grateful for the discount arranged for entry into Bamburgh Castle.

It was all there in one sweeping panorama, all the more enjoyable when curled up on the sofa with a hot drink. The immediate view of the harbour and all associated activity – the boats and ducks coming to and fro – plus the close proximity to the shops, cannot be surpassed.

Sliding back the balcony door, we could hear the Cuddy’s pleasant “Oooh, oooh” call as they chattered to each other. And the sunset behind Bamburgh Castle was to die for.

A trip to the Farne Islands is an absolute must, especially when the puffins are home for their breeding season (approximately May to July). We took a boat ride to Inner Farne where there were puffins in abundance, plus nesting birds complete with their chicks perched on the very edge of the cliff. The boat took us around the shoreline of a few of the islands where we also saw seals bobbing around almost beside us and to the Longstone Island, famous as the one time home of Grace Darling.

During our stay in Seahouses, we also visited Bamburgh and Alnwick Castles (the children had broomstick lessons at the latter) and drove over to Lindisfarne. All in all, a fabulous four days away.