Thornthwaite, Keswick, Cumbria CA12 5RZ
There’s been a campsite in this little corner near Keswick since the 1960s, but it had rather fallen into decline when wonderfully amiable owners Gareth and Helen took it over a few years ago and injected it with new life (and some free-range chickens).
The result is a site that’s constantly on the up, with the sort of facilities you’d be happy to eat your dinner off and a collection of new glamping options for folks who call themselves ‘campers’ but are suspiciously lacking in a tent. Pods and shepherd’s huts, tucked beneath the trees, offer an affordable alternative – where you bring your own gear and sleeping bag, yet benefit from insulation, electricity and double glazed doors – while a vintage 1960’s caravan is a perfect luxury hideout for folks who love a touch of the old-school style.
For campers and glampers alike, though, the atmosphere here is one of laid-back, relaxation combined with a few necessary practicalities. There’s a little shop on site, chickens roaming free, and a friendly chatty atmosphere, while cyclists in particular are impeccably well catered for – the site is bang on the C2C route and there are mountain bike trails aplenty in the nearby Whinlatter Forest.
For most it is this proximity to all things outdoors that make for such a winning site. Arguably there are few such well-known spots in the Lake District National Park than this staggeringly beautiful landscape in its north west corner. Pub quiz devotees will also be excited to learn that nearby Bassenthwaite Lake is home to the vendace, Britain’s rarest fish. Next question please, landlord.
The Owner Says
Lanefoot Farm Campsite is a peaceful site in a picturesque setting, between Bassenthwaite Lake and Derwentwater, with panoramic views of the surrounding fells.
On Lanefoot Farm we offer a range of camping and glamping experiences to suit everyone. Stay on our campsite with your own tent or caravan, or try one of our many glamping accommodation options: The Pods, Shepherd's Hut, or our Vintage Caravan.
All options allow you to enjoy all the benefits of camping, without any hassle! With affordable camping accommodation already set up on site, you can leave the tent at home and avoid the adverse effects of driving rain, or the chore of drying out a wet tent when you get home. Just bring all your camping gear, but leave the tent behind!
Positive: easy access from other parts of the country because it's just off the A66. Negative: a fair bit of traffic noise from the A66, so it would be hard to convince yourself you were in the middle of a tranquil nowhere. However, the views from the site are fine. The main toilet/washing facilities are in part of the 16th century farmhouse, and the building needs some serious refurbishment. I can see it's particularly difficult to keep a higgledy-piggledy building like this looking clean, but they could definitely try harder. I can also imagine the facilities are overstretched in high season, and they're a long way from the top camping field (which isn't very level and has lots of damp sections). The area with electric hook-ups looked far more attractive. There are numerous chickens roaming in the field - cute at first, but they have developed a fine nose for any food that's being prepared, and are very difficult to chase off - became a real pest. It was OK for 2 nights (particularly because the weather was fabulous), but I won't be rushing back.
We stayed at Lanefoot Farm in August, so it was full, but it didn't feel overcrowded and we rarely had to queue to use the facilities which were clean and plentiful. It was useful to have the small shop on site, stocking logs, bread, ice creams etc and we have happy memories of sitting around the campfire overlooking Skiddaw. It was lovely to be on a working farm with sheep, hens and the sweetest little chicks wandering around the camping field. A big plus is that although Lanefoot feels like it's in the middle of nowhere, it's close to the main road. We didn't need to move our campervan once we'd parked up as we could get around by bus or on our bikes - it was an easy bike ride in to Keswick for all the family. Braithwaite is a short walk away where there were several pubs and an excellent village shop. In summary, a fantastic campsite in a wonderful location.
My husband and I took our vintage VW on her first camping trip (with us) to Lanefoot Farm for a long weekend. It was actually just about perfect in every way---the owners are delightful, the setting fabulous, and facilities very clean. The big extras are wonderful hill walking from the campsite, pubs with great food and Braithwaite village a short stroll up the lane, and finally, wonderful campfires in the evening.We will definately return.
Wet stay but still good.
Excellent campsite. Stunning scenery and a short walk to a wonderful pub. Open fires actively encouraged and very good facilities. An on site shop caters for basic needs and campfire wood is also sold. Good walks around about. Will definitely be staying again, hopefully soon.
We have just spent 3 nights at Lanefoot in the lovely shephards hut. The perfect camping spot...camp fires, heated floors in the shower room, dog friendly, a little shop, amazing views and a very friendly welcome. We even had some sunshine - We will definitely be coming back!
Nice Stay-Friendly Site
This is a well positioned site for walking/cycling set with Skiddaw and Grisedale Pike surrounding.Camp fires allowed and large bag of logs about a £5 but would last a few nights. Small shop for some basics, but Keswick 2.5 miles. Amenities are a bit basic as farm camp site but include showers, toilets and drying room, which is god send. I found staff very friendly and helpful.All in all a great little site I would re-visit again.
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Lanefoot Farm - Keswick
My husband and I stayed here in July 2013. It was our first proper camping trip and although the facilities were basic you couldn't fault them. We stayed in the main field which has a stunning view of the mountains. The showers were clean and hot if a little busy at times. The shop is well stocked in case you have forgotten any supplies but it is only a short drive into Keswick if you need anything more. This place is a great base for exploring the Lakes and campfires are allowed.
Lanefoot Farm: unspoilt countryside; spoilt, happy campers
Approaching my 40s, my ideal campsite will offer a perfect balance of nature and subtle pampering. On the nature front, Lanefoot Farm's open field gets full marks with its gently sloping field giving views beyond the hedge that hides the quiet access road and over the tranquil Bassenthwaite valley. My wife is less driven to the hills, let alone to staying in them overnight under canvass so once we'd pitched our tent above the slope in lovely soft, near-level ground, the sight of the owners' daughter approaching with a wheel-barrow twice her size, laden with the hub of an old tractor tyre and logs to burn, was a welcome and warming one. Even from 50 yards, we could sense an element of modest pride to her work so we didn't rush to help. . . . or maybe that was because we were a bit busy, slicing lemon for the G&T. The fire blazed, we ate well, and were kept good and warm this cold May evening. And in the morning, limbs stiffened by a slowly leaking air-bed, our short journey to the shower block brought the unexpected treat of underfloor heating to complement the powerful showers. Behind the block, I could see small pitches amid more cultivated, shaded gardens, whose idyllic grounds were being supervised by some haughty chickens. The owners run a busy farm but their attention to their guests is somehow still equal to this work. Ding a bell and the small but well-stocked shop will be attended. I had a craving for marmalade, they had some and the pampering continued.By coincidence, my wife got a job in Keswick a year later - a surprisingly quick and level stretch of cycle-path away. It being early April this time, we though we might try a few nights in the full luxury of Lanefoot farm and opt for their barn-converted studio flat at only £50/night. This was self-catering at such great value that you sort of want to keep it a secret. Mind your head on the beams, though and get to bed early or with super-strength ear-plugs in respect for the Cockerel who likes to give good advance warning of the approaching dawn. Next time we go, we'll try the third, in-between option of a shepherd's hut. With a second camping field of marked-out pitches, upping the capacity to cater for the summer throngs - allowing for that ever-more rare Lake District opportunity of a late booking - it's safe to say that Lanefoot Farm offers accommodation for all budgets and tastes. It's all done with quiet and friendly efficiency, attention to detail and high standards of upkeep. Go there! It's great!
Stayed in the Shepherd's Hut here last summer and couldn't fault it! The hut was gorgeous, we had our own private area so we didn't feel over looked by other campers. The fact you can have a camp fire is great - the only downside is the wood is quite expensive and you will burn through a bag a night.
The campsite is in a great location, only a 5 minute drive away from Keswick and the lovely Derwent Water (lovely to walk around, and also highly recommend the rowing boats and the evening boat cruise - with free wine!). It's also within walking distance of Whinlatter Forest which is huge, we could have spent days just walking around there. There are a number of pubs within easy walking distance, as well as a local shop.
The facilities on site are exactly as you'd expect - a small shop, lovely new washroom and luxury showers (unfortunately not enough so I did have to queue but they've done what they can with the existing space). The toilets could do with updating, but as they are in an old farm building they are perfectly sufficient.
Really great campsite and good value for money, highly recommend!
Great campsite, good facilities, friendly owners.
Great campsite. We were shown a few areas to choose from and chose pitches in the back garden area near the facilities.
Facilities were clean and good - hot water in the washing up area, strong & hot showers, toilets clean with toilet paper and soap (although no hot water so needed to go to the sink by the showers to get that). It would have been good to have a normal & recycling bin near the main house as we didn't see any except a food one in the washing up area and in the toilets and had to walk around to the barn. Only a short walk though.
The owners were friendly and happy to help with slightly less usual requests e.g. Chilling our wine! I think opening hours displayed at the shop would be helpful. The owners come when the bell rings but I would have felt better doing that if I had known that they were not right in the middle of dinner or something.
The location is good - pubs are walkable and it's close enough to the main road to be easily accessible without experiencing traffic noise. The area felt safe. It doesn't have a direct lake view (but that's hardly the site's fault!)
Our 2-year old loved the chickens! Overall we enjoyed our stay - thank you.
Pretty Perfect in everyway
My Fiancee and I along with our young Vizsla dog have just returned from the bank holiday camping trip to Keswick and to say we've loved every minute is a bit of an understatement. If you're lucky enough to come across Lanefoot Farm you need not look any further for a wonderful campsite. The owners are lovely, the site is very friendly and welcoming and the campfires are just the icing on the cake. Its also a working farm so the roaming hens with their chicks, the pony in the field and surrounding sheep just add to the amazing experience.
We didn't manage to get booked on a site prior to arrival but having called and begged the owners at Lanefoot several times over we were told to turn up on the Saturday morning to see if there would be space for us. When we arrived we were lucky enough to get a pitch (thanks to some that had cancelled the night before). The site was busy - but this was to be expected with every site in the lakes August bank holiday - during our trip into Keswick we couldn't get moved so you can imagine how ever site was the same this bank holiday. Despite the volume of people we still had plenty of space to pitch our rather large tent and the site is in a beautiful spot. The facilities are well maintained, always clean and although theres only 3 showers we never queued once. The site seems to attract like minded campers, families, sensible couples, and small groups - all mixing together and enjoying the site - it was fabulous. I can't stress enough how lovely this site is we will 100% be returning next year. Thank you Lanefoot for a wonderful weekend xx
Lovely site, too many people
We had a lovely stay at this campsite. It is in a beautiful spot and the facilities are great - the campfires are a very nice touch. The two small camping areas looked delightful.
However, the main field where we camped (due to arriving at 6pm on a Friday and not having much choice) was very very busy and it was hard to find a place to set up, let alone a spot with any privacy, despite the fact that we thought we had booked specific pitches. It seemed a shame to be so crammed in when the rest of the site looked so nice, and reminded me a bit of camping at a festival, though maybe I have just been spoilt by the campsites I have stayed at before. Perhaps this is just what I should have expected from a campsite during the summer holidays, but I had got the impression from the website that the owners would limit numbers.
Overall, a good experience, and I would stay here again, though not in July or August!
We stayed at Lanefoot farm for 4 nights in April and it was lovely. The roaming chickens provided us with entertainment and you could buy there eggs on the farm too, which were delicious! We had lovely surrounding views, and it was nicely sheltered.
There was excellent access to footpaths and bridleways from the farm, and it was a short drive from keswick, dodd wood, bassenthwaite lake, etc.
I have to say the underfloor heating in the shower area was a god-send too as it was pretty chilly at the time and I could nip into the cubicle with just a sink in the morning and it would warm me from the feet up!!!
A really fantastic family campsite. We stayed there at the begining of September 2011, for three nights camping with two small children.
Facilities were very clean and worked well (i.e. HOT showers with good pressure). The children loved the chickens and it was great to have a fire next to the tent.
Not really a down side, but we stayed in the large field which became quite difficult to navigate in a car after two days heavy rain and was also further away from the toilets etc. With younger children we may have been better off in the 'garden' field closer to the facilities.
But that said, we had a great time, the cost was very reasonable, and the owner very friendly.
Lovely lovely little campsite.
Perfectly placed, feels in the middle of nowhere, but only 5 minutes drive to civilisation. Close to gorgeous Keswick.
My children especially just loved the little shop.
Toilet, showers and dishwash area are immaculate and very quirky.
I loved the big map in the corridor.
A very sweet little cat roaming about.
Free range chicken pecking past the tent area real novelty.
Firewood delivered to your tent daily (sometimes with the girls singing in the back of the truck) is a massive bonus.
All in all, very sweet, quirky and clean campsite.
My only negative point would be.... if I were the owners, I would make the pitching more structured - tent / car / tent / car... round the outside of the field, leaving the middle of the field free for play. That was the only aspect my children missed. Plus, just making the pitches slightly more structured - even by putting the fires in permanent positions to pitch at? would mean there would be room to play, while not losing any pitching space, actually it would create room.
That said - we loved our visit, and will be visiting again soon.