Brooks Farm, Bleasdale, Garstang, Lancashire PR3 1UY
Bleasdale is a perfect case in point. It’s a good half-mile of private driveway that leads you away from the backwater B-road you took from the M6. The vast country estate is fronted by old workmen’s cottages, perched at the entrance to the grounds that date back several centuries. In the background flanks of dark, crowded trees give way to gently rising ridges, climbing up to Fair Snape Fell – one of the largest hills in the Forest of Bowland – before curling round a crescent-shaped valley to Parlick Pike. It’s British beauty that’s difficult to beat, no matter where you go.
The site itself is of the high-end glamping kind. This is a place where, regardless of how muddy you get stalking wildlife or splashing in the river, you can return to the utmost of canvas comforts. Five spacious, well-furnished safari tents are pitched with their backs to a strip of den-friendly woodland and overlooking a private section of the languid River Brock. Inside they’re divided into three separate bedrooms and a large open plan living area with a kitchen in the corner. A central woodburner adds to the cosy feel, accompanied by furnishings that wouldn’t look out of place in the elegant outhouses of the estate. Attached to the back is a private bathroom and toilet with a piping gas-powered shower and thoughtfully provided toiletries in cute minature bottles.
While inside campers can positively hideaway from all the clamours of daily life, outside the tranquil surroundings provide just the same dose of calm and relaxation. The campsite has immediate access to several fantastic local trails and if you head from the river banks in the direction of Parlick Pike – a heather-topped cone of a hill – there’s a Stone Age circle around ten minutes away. Most days you’ll be the only one here, so you can stand around holding hands and pray to the ancient fire gods. When you get back to camp check if it’s worked by laying out the campfire, then pray to the god of marshmallows… or just buy them from Bleasdale's honesty shop.