Kent self catering cottage, Stone in Oxney
Coldharbour Cottage won the National Silver Award for the best Self Catering Cottage in 2010. The cottage itself has been renovated to a high standard whilst retaining many original features. The original oak beams, inglenook fireplace, old bakers oven and the garden room make this an ideal place to relax, enjoy the view and explore the countryside. Set in 60 acres of farmland with fantastic views over the Rother Valley towards the sea. Just 5 miles from Rye, 8 miles from Tenterden and 15 minutes drive from Ashford.
Walk across the fields to the old windmill in the village along the same path as those Victorian farmers went. Experience the walk across the field to the Church in Stone and discover the houses used in the area for the smugglers in the last century. Your host will help you to arrange your visits to these interesting local sites off the tourist track. See our website for exciting Country Tours including bushcraft, history trails and childrens quiz.
The town of Rye is just 5 miles away and a great place to explore, there is the old cobbled streets, many independent shops, lots of tea shops and small cafes often located in very old quirky buildings on street corners. Stroll around the town, visit on Thursday for the famous market and the Rye Town Model gives the fascinating story of the Town. Tenterden is a slightly bigger market town which is great with many really different gifty shops and lovely restaurants. Here you can get the steam train and look out for the old Central Garage building because apparently thats where my great granddad used to work.! There is a small market in the town on Fridays. Around the area are some really good national trust properties particularly Sissinghurst Castle, Bodiam castle and we really like the Smallhythe Place which is just 3 miles from the cottage. A very old house with some nice gardens and a small church nearby.
Rooms, food and facilities
The Living room is dominated by the large inglenook fireplace, with its original brick floor and timber structure. . Leading from this room you enter the old parlour which has a sofa bed for additional guests.
The flagstone floored kitchen is well equipped with a traditional AGA oven and features a real working baker’s oven set in the wall. It has a fridge freezer, dishwasher lots of pots and pans !
Downstairs leading from the kitchen is the Garden Room looking out across the Rother Valley. The bathroom is adjacent to this room.
Upstairs, the master bedroom has a queen size homestead bed with en suite shower. The second bedroom has two single beds available. This room has an en-suite toilet. The cottage sleeps six people.
Outside there is a childrens play area with slides, trampolines and a Games Room. There is ample space for car parking and grocery orders can be delivered the next day or on arrival. For those staying for a week we offer a special hamper full of local food and drink all for free.
The cottage has all the usual facilities associated with a 4 star rating. Modern amenities include freeview TV, CD, DVD and video player with wireless broadband connection. A washing machine is provided, cots and highchairs are available on request. Linen is included in the price.
Some special mentions , a pig bench, 100 year old tumblers, an old bakers oven, a mystery smoking cavity, a wine rack made out of old clay pipes, old rusty keys, parma ham, dried herbs and lavender and a very old bath!
How to find us
Directions from Rye
From the Railway Station, follow the directions for A268. Over the railway bridge turn immediately right into Military Road and drive for about 4 miles.
Soon after a Farm building on the left which looks like an aircraft hanger turn LEFT over a small bridge. This goes up a narrow lane to the top of the hill where you will see the entrance to Coldharbour Farm on the LEFT.
Directions from Tenterden A262
Travel on the B2082 towards Wittersham. About a mile further on you will see the Windmill on your right as you approach a junction. The road continues on a sharp bend to the right but go STRAIGHT on here passed the Water Tower on your left.
About a mile further turn right at the signpost to Royal Military Canal. Another mile along this narrow lane you will come to the entrance to Coldharbour Farm on your right.
How this holiday makes a difference
We adopt a reduce, recycle and reuse policy on all waste produced in the cottage. We reuse Flour Sacks for all waste keeping the different components separate. All heating and services are on timers to avoid unnecessary energy waste. The Aga oven has been converted to electric which runs off cheaper fuel stored overnight. We have a fruit and vegetable patch where we grow our own produce. We do have occasional opportunities for guests to spend some time working on the Farm, be that as simple as feeding the animals, general farm work and even fencing. All these activities help support the farmstead and bring benefits to the participants in both learning about Farm life and just getting out in the fresh air !
Join us on one of our Country Tours and see the beautiful landscape which surrounds the farm. Learn about trees, birdlife and some of the fascinating history of the site. Guests are encouraged to look for wildlife and note the sightings within just 2 miles of the cottage. This may mean a walk down to the Stone Cliff searching for Buzzards circling the jet streams high up in the sky or spotting the odd stout racing around the quarry. Maybe you will find more !
Its not on that, we look after our land too. The Farm has 60 acres which we have divided up into good size fields for Sheep Grazing yes, the famous Romney Marsh lamb is found here ! We are part of a government backed scheme which endeavours to enhance the landscape through special measures, like controlling grassland, weed cover and encouraging the development of the native wildflowers. This has been a great success and the Farm is now on the Higher Level Stewardship Scheme. We have our own sheep - up to 250 of them as well as a few pigs. A few months ago our Farm was selected from many
others in the local area as being idea for the re introduction of the extinct UK short-haired bumblebee. This bee was last recorded in Dungeness Kent in 1988 and was officially declared extinct in 2000. However about 120 years ago this bee species along with 3 other bumblebee species was deliberately introduced to New Zealand to pollinate red clover used for cattle fodder (as NZ have no native bumblebee species).
The aim of this project is to reintroduce this bee species back to the UK by collecting queens from New Zealand. Another aim is to recreate the 'ideal' habitat not only for this bumblebee but all bumblebee species. Over the last 70 years over 98% of our wild flower meadows have disappeared. Recreating this habitat will not only be important for bumblebee but for barn owls, yellow hammers, water voles, marsh mallow moth and plant. This work is on going and very exciting too.
We recommend local restaurants and pubs where you can taste lovely local food and drink. The local pubs are exception with some great examples in Appledore (2 miles) and Stone (1 mile) from the cottage - you can walk, cycle or we can arrange transport.
We can advise on anything from local playgrounds for children to the best supermarkets in the area. There are some local coffee shops and supermarkets within the area called Jempsons – which is a family business which has operated in the area for over 75 years. Coffee Shops selling homemade bread and cakes in Battle, Bexhill, Rye, Hastings and St Leonards are recommended as is the award winning superstore in Peasmarsh, just 6 miles from the cottage and opened from Monday to Saturday 7am to 8pm. (www.jempsons.com) This store is re knowned for its local produce offering, so different than the major supermarkets. It has forged links with a number of really good local food producers who are often exhibiting their wares in the food store. Some of the fabulous local products are Honey from Headcorn which is absolutely delicious, local beer and wine from Sandhurst, local icecream from Ashford, local apples, vegetables and even Christmas trees from the village itself. It even runs a local bus service to local villages for those wishing a break from travelling by car. A fabulous restaurant and don't forget to visit the Bakery - join in on one of the Bakery Workshops and learn the art of making real bread.
In the cottage library we have a section advertising local business' offering a wide range of goods and services. We try to help our guests visit local attractions rather than travel long distances - there is so much to see within a 10 mile radius of the cottage !
Our visits to the local farms and historical places of interest as part of the Country Tours showcase local business and cottage industries which form a vital part of the community. We have links with the Kent Wildlife Trust and encourage guests to participate in nature walks and local footpaths across the surrounding countryside.
Thats is part of the Coldharbour experience - its more than a place to stay. The surrounding undulating farmland is an uplifting and refreshing welcome from some of the more urban bustling towns and cities of southern england. It is steeped in history too, from the story of the smugglers on the look out for the local police to the construction of the Military Road and its WWII bunkers lined along the route. I can direct you along some fantastic public footpaths, off the beaten track which will pass by old Romney Marsh Lookers Huts, old churches and waterways which are very interesting for young and old. We have created a Local History Walking Tour which takes you across the farm and around the local village showing you all the points of interest - with a little bit of fun too. There are little clues to a quiz along the walk and when you have finished you not only win some unique knowledge of the local area but also a small prize !
You will come home not only having had a good rest but will understand the history, the beautiful landscape and learn a little about the local wildlife and what life used to be like on a typical farm in the Victorian era. The Farm was bought in 2005 as a run down, overgrown and neglected site, the cottage was empty and derelict. The Wagon Shed was in a heap on the floor. Our vision was to recreate the site as it used to be. The cottage tells a story, the wagon lodge has been brought back to life, the old barn will be converted soon. There are animals on the farm once again and that's how it should be.