Wallace Lane Farm
Wallace Lane Farm, Brocklebank, Wigton, Cumbria CA7 8DL
Plotted just outside the charming Cumbrian village of Caldbeck, Wallace Lane Farm is the Stanyer family's gorgeous 23 acre small holding. Besides your affable hosts (John and Janet), the farm is home to rare-breed sheep, free-range chickens and several ponies. From its enviably, elevated vantage point high in the north Cumbrian fells, the views are stunning, taking in Caldbeck High Peak and stretching to the Solway Firth and beyond to the Scottish Uplands.
The site is open to both tents and caravans, with five hardstandings for the former and six pitches for the latter (all bar one of which is fully-serviced). The real stars of the show here though are the three wooden camping cabins. Built by John's own fair hand, we're inclined to agree with Wallace Lane's audacious claim to "the most luxurious camping cabins in Cumbria". These roomy (4m x 5.25m) timber lodges are decked out with all the usual mod-cons, including a proper dining table and nifty little kitchenette. But these little touches of civility don't mean you're in for a watered-down version of 'the great outdoors' experience. With the breathtaking mountain views, and the warming crackle from the cast-iron wood-burning stove, these wooden cabins are redolent of a grizzly lumberjack's digs (albeit one with a penchant for crisp, white Egyptian-cotton sheets and flowery pillows). Whether visiting in the summer amidst the buttercup-dappled fields, or in the fresher, autumnal months, peace and quiet is guaranteed.
With the Lakes on your doorstep, not to mention Hadrian's Wall, Kielder Forest, and even the Yorkshire Dales all within easy reach, you'll not be stuck for places to visit. Oftentimes though, it's the lesser-known discoveries that really make a trip, so be sure to utilise John and Janet's expert local knowledge. Case in point; the St Kentigren churchyard in Caldbeck village hosts the grave of a certain John Peel (not that one), famous 18th century Cumbrian huntsman and all round raconteur immortalised in local ballad. No doubt you'll be leaving singing the praises of Caldbeck's other celebrated John after your fuss-free stay at Wallace Lane Farm.