12 March 2018

A weekend in a 400 year old cottage in Longsleddale

It has been tradition for Mark and I over the past few years to have a little February Cumbrian holiday, tucked away in a remote cottage somewhere in the lakes. You can see previous years here and here. This year's cottage is perhaps THE best yet...

Bridge End is a 400 year old cottage, believed to have been built around 1616! Set in the un-spoilt, peaceful and picturesque valley of Longsleddale in the southern lake district.

Bridge End is on a working farm and along a long country track. There is a dilapidated barn next door and another barn, converted into a further cottage, just down the track. Aside from these couple of buildings Bridge End stands alone with nothing but rolling hills as far as the eye can see.

We booked our long weekend through Sally's Cottages which is a local Cumbrian business, they have SO many amazing places to choose from. I love browsing all the different beautiful cottages and daydreaming about future holidays!

We love a remote cottage and this one certainly ticks all the boxes. Absolutely zero phone signal for miles and not a chance of wifi. It had electricity and running water but was not mains water so we had to boil it to drink it.

We did however have a TV, which flickered and cut out quite a lot, and the best thing was the TV had an accompanying VHS player, yup, like tapes! We, er, didn't bring any tapes with us, so that was a lot of good.

But what the cottage lacked in modern conveniences certainly made up for with views. What do you need wifi for when this is what is outside your front door.

I walked a little way up the farm track and spotted this little guy. All the other sheep were across the river and he was all on his own! It's a bit odd for a sheep to be on his own. He stopped and posed for a couple of photos for me and then he yelled at me a bit and proceeded to follow me back up the path. I didn't like the look of those large horns on his head so broke out into a light jog back to the cottage, haha!

I'm not entirely sure what I was going for here, just playing around with the macro settings on my camera, but I do love the textures on this old dry stone wall in the garden of the cottage.

This is the bridge that crosses the small river just out of the front door. This bridge could literally be as old as the cottage and I was more than a little reluctant to cross it, but cross it we did a few times and we survived to tell the tale! haha.

So I am assuming you would like to see inside the cottage then???

Through the front door the cottage is open plan, to the right a large living room with massive fireplace taking up one wall, as beautifully presented here by Mark!  To the left a dinning area and kitchen.

But the best bit and my very fave spot was the jigsaw nook! A perfect little well lit, cosy dining area with window seats. Perfection.

So of course we HAD to do a jigsaw in the jigsaw nook! I went out and purchased a jigsaw in advance of our stay for this very purpose. I was pretty certain there would be jigsaws in the cottage, especially in a cottage with a 'jigsaw nook'. But I wasn't going to risk it, for of course if I hadn't had brought one there wouldn't have been one there, sod's law and all. But we know from experience of Sally's Cottages they are all so well stocked and have everything you need, so there were already some jigsaws here. We added our jigsaw to the cottage's collection when we left.

I don't think I have done a jigsaw since I was little. Either we are utterly rubbish at jigsaws or this one was fiendishly hard, but it us HOURS! and I'm not sure if it was more of a stress and frustration than it was pleasurable. However it was a challenge and we had to complete it.   There of course was that one stubborn piece we could just NOT find, convincing ourselves all evening we must have got a whole section wrong, or pondering whether the manufacturers had missed a piece from the box... only to 'hilariously' find it on the floor...

But ta da!!! A job well done and a few beers consumed in the process!

We also enjoyed some reading, crochet and a spot of sketching. I could get used to this no internet malarkey (maybe for only a little while longer).

The jigsaw nook was my favourite spot in the whole house. I ate my breakfast here each morning and chose this little window seat as the ideal place to read the cottage's visitor's books, I adore reading and adding our own comments to these!

Every now and again glancing up from my book to take in the ludicrously perfect view from the window. Sigh....

The dining area of the cottage had a lovely table with bench seating and a further window seat, I love a window seat!

The kitchen was a modern addition and had everything we could possibly need.

The stairs at Bridge End are epic! Held up by one leg through an ancient door in the corner these ancient wooden stairs must be as old as the house! I couldn't help but think of the many many people over the past 400 years who's footsteps will have fallen on the same place as mine as I climbed.

Upstairs is a small newly carpeted landing and 4 doors to the bedrooms. The bathroom is downstairs and just off the kitchen.

The cottage has 4 bedrooms and sleeps 7, so really not a tiny cottage by any means! The bedrooms were comfortable and basic with quite 70's furnishings.

We were super super lucky with the weather during our long weekend, I didn't see one rain drop. It was very cold, but bright and sunny and crisp.

Until next time Longsleddale...


  1. Oh my goodness Jo what a beautiful beautiful beautiful place to stay! I want to move in right now!!
    Peta x

  2. Oh you know how jealous I was of you *already* of living near the lakes and now I am even more so! xx

    Lynsey || One More Slice


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