Family Teeny Weeny House
Long Itchlington, may be no more than an unassuming Warwickshire village but it packs a pubby punch – boasting no fewer than seven watering holes. It’s part and parcel of the passing trade here, not only from the A423 that zips through the high street, but also the tranquil Grand Union Canal bringing cyclists along the towpath and wandering houseboaters onto shore. There’s something charmingly resourceful about these canal folk, with everything economically housed in the narrow innards of their boat. It’s an ingenious efficiency that’s echoed at Family Teeny Weeny House, an onshore hideaway with a surprisingly similar ethos.
12ft long by 10ft wide the Teeny Weeny House is truly teeny weeny. When you look at the raw measurements it doesn’t seem particularly appealing, but the reality is quite the contrary. This dwelling is a masterpiece of quirky design. Despite the odds it packs within its timber walls a kitchen, dining area, and three different sleeping spaces, with fold out bunk-beds downstairs and a king-sized bed tucked inside the roof. The stairs themselves, well, they’re not really stairs at all, but a pair of staggered kitchen cupboards that together form block-like stacks you ascend onto the table and up into the second floor.
Outside, the spacious decking has a bigger footprint than the actual house and boasts a wood-fired hot tub; a prime spot to enjoy some late night stargazing. A covered dining area is accompanied by a woodburner, modified so you can both cook on it and use as an open fire and the tall, shiny chimneys appropriately echo those old fashioned canal boats, releasing soft wisps of smoke as they quietly chug along.
Peculiar, the Family Teeny Weeny House certainly is, but in a dynamic and fun sort of way. If you’re looking for something different then the quirky, storybook charm of it is difficult to contend with. Like everything, the originality of glamping has to contend with the self-generating craze it has created and, while bell tents and yurts start to pop-up across the country, Family Teeny Weeny House can most definitely still claim to be something original and new. For kids, of course, it's a blast but even us bigger kids can't help but find it fascinatingly fun. Match that with the family-friendly pubs and you've got yourself a winning glamping getaway.
FacilitiesAt only 10ft by 12ft this house lives up to its name, but is packed with features. There is a hot tub, gazebo and wood fired BBQ. The ground floor features a fold down bunk bed (sleeping 2 adults) and a small kitchen area, including a sink with running cold water. A table that sits 4 people doubles as a landing, while kitchen units double as steps and seats! From this table/landing you access the sleeping loft featuring a king-sized bed. A sofa bed sleeps a further 2 people. The outside veranda hosts a wood fired BBQ which doubles up as an open wood burner and there is a hot tub. Located on a working arable farm, the 1-acre mown pasture is for the exclusive use of guests.
Suitable ForGlampers and dogs – yes. Tents, campervans and caravans – no.
NearbyThe site is set on the edge of a 100-acre arable field which guests are welcome to explore. The field links up to a small single track road that leads to the village of Long Itchington (of pub fame) as well as down to the Grand Union Canal. From here you can either cycle the towpath or join a disused railway track, now converted into a pleasant Greenway. Cycling west takes you to Royal Leamington Spa, with its pleasant colonnaded parade and the historic county town of Warwick, most noted for it's well preserved castle (08712 652000). Alternatively it's just a short drive and if you continue on then Stratford upon Avon, Shakespeare’s birthplace, is also close at hand.
Food & DrinkThere is a farm shop a mile and a half a way. It's a pleasant walk to reach it but a clue is in the name; Hill Top Farm Shop (01926 632978) is excellently stocked with a wealth of Warwickshire produce. For a pint or a meal you're not hard pressed for options here. There are 7 pubs in Long Itchlington alone: The Green Man (01926 812208), The Buck & Bell (01926 811177), Duck on the Pond (01926 815876), The Harvester (01926 812698), The Two Boats (01926 812640), The Cuttle Inn (01926 812314) and The Blue Lias Inn (01926 812249). Then after that there are locals like The Stag (01926 425801) in neighbouring Offchurch and The Red Lion (01926 632715) in Hunningham. For a full restaurant array, though, head to Leamington Spa where top picks include La Bistrot Pierre (01926 426261), Thai Elephant Restaurant (01926 886882) and La Coppola (01926 886882) – just three among the many.
All year round.
The Owner Says
Due to the sites rural location sat-navs will bring you to Snowford Hill, but not to the door. Once on Snowford Hill find the sign ‘Grange Cottages’ at the foot of the hill on the Long Itchington side. Pull into this driveway and follow it in and to the left. Once you have passed through the barn conversions you will see the Tiny Wooden House ahead of you. Aidan lives onsite (at 4 Grange Cottages) and someone will meet you upon arrival.
Chiltern Railways services run at frequent intervals (mostly half-hourly) between London and Birmingham Snow Hill, with further trains to Stratford-upon-Avon. Four long-distance trains an hour (operated by CrossCountry) also serve Leamington throughout most of the day, two northbound and two southbound. Typically, these alternate between services from Manchester to Reading and Bournemouth by way of Southampton Central.
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