You can arrive empty handed: there’s a generous hamper to get you started in the morning – locally baked bread, milk, eggs, coffee, juice and homemade cake. Walk it all off: 15 minutes takes you to The Drake Stone, a mythical meeting place for Druids with views of the medieval ruins of Harbottle Castle. Carry on to Clennell Street, a truly ancient trackway and historic Drovers Road through the Cheviot Hills that crosses the border to Scotland, or visit the Lady’s Well in Holystone where St Ninian is reputed to have baptised early Christians.
Back at the cottage there’s a wood-burner to warm up in front of and a big TV with the full Sky package and books and games to keep everyone entertained. The country kitchen’s easy to work in, there’s room for six around the slate-topped table and another wood-burner keeps it all cosy. Take your nightcap out to the pavement bench to gaze at starry skies.
Pop next door to The Star Inn for a drink and bar snack – they also sell newspapers. For meals out, the pub in Alwinton (1.5 miles) is good and for places to eat and shops the towns of Thropton and Rothbury aren’t much further.