What’s The Cottage like?
This detached 19th Century cottage is one of the village’s last remaining links to the coal mining industry. It previously served as an office for the former Cross Pit and was also a doctor’s surgery before it was converted into a three-bedroom holiday home. The cottage, which is located on the A628, is approximately 10 minutes from Barnsley.
How dog-friendly is The Cottage?
Excellent. Dog beds, blankets, treats and poo bags are provided and there’s also a crate of toys for pets to play with. Stan loved rummaging through it every day to pick out a new ball! There is plenty of outdoor space for dogs to enjoy, too. The cottage has a large enclosed patio area that wraps around the back of the house and is completely secure as long as the gate is shut. Up to three dogs can stay at a time for no additional fee. The only rule is that they stay off the beds.
Tell me more about The Cottage
From the moment you walk through the door of this three-bedroom detached cottage, you know you’re in for a treat. Flagstones line the floor of the entrance corridor and from there, it’s a couple of steps down into the spacious lounge, complete with two comfy sofas and an armchair. There are lots of cushions and cosy throws to snuggle up under and a giant feature fireplace with wood-burning stove, which all of us loved.
The quirky dining room is located off the lounge, as well as the beautiful kitchen with duck-egg blue cabinets. This is truly the heart of the house and is incredibly well-equipped. A set of double doors lead from the kitchen to the secure patio area, which has garden furniture and a fire pit, as well as the Silkstone Beck burbling along behind it.
Upstairs, you’ll find three light and airy bedrooms leading off the main corridor – two doubles and a twin. They are all decorated in neutral shades with pops of green and all have lots of storage, as well as blackout blinds and curtains. Both of the doubles have smart TVs as well. You’ll also find the compact bathroom on the first floor, which has a lovely double-width shower and water that is hot and powerful. Bliss!
Owners Liz and Neil have clearly put a lot of time and effort into the cottage and thought of everything guests could possibly need. We visited just before Christmas and there were lots of decorations and trinkets dotted around, which was really sweet. Even the toilet paper had the Snowman and Snowdog on it! There were books and board games for guest to enjoy and plenty to look at on the walls too, from quirky dog and cow prints to decorative plates.
The cottage has such a homely feel and everything – from the kitchen to the bedding, blackout blinds and curtains – has been finished to a really high standard. The black window frames look great too and the glass has tinted film for extra privacy. There is parking for one car in front of the cottage and off-street parking to the side. The front door is accessed via a gate, which opens in to the patio area.
As the cottage is located on a main road, you will inevitably hear a bit of traffic noise but we didn’t find this a problem. There is also a Co-op petrol station and shop right next-door which the house is well shielded from – but it might be an issue in the summer if you have windows open and want to spend more time outside. We actually found it really handy but it’s something to be aware of, in case you’re expecting a rural village location.
What’s the food like at The Cottage?
This is a self-catering property, but we had a lovely little welcome pack waiting for us when we arrived. Not only was there complimentary tea and coffee, but the owners had also left us a card, a bottle of Irish cream liqueur and some handmade Christmas cupcakes. There was also a tray of Quality Street chocolates for us to enjoy, which didn’t last long! The kitchen had every gadget you could possibly think of and the range cooker was a dream to use. There was also a dishwasher – and washing machine – tucked away in the dining room.
If you fancy eating out though, you’re spoilt for choice. There are two traditional dog-friendly pubs within easy walking distance of the cottage – The Red Lion and The Bells Bar & Kitchen, which welcomes pets in its bar area. The nearby Pot House Hamlet shopping village, in an old mill and glassworks, is also well worth visiting. There’s a dog-friendly area in The Potting Shed Cafe and pooches are always guaranteed a warm welcome – and treat – at Rupert’s pet shop. We can also recommend The Chilli Lodge, if you fancy an Indian takeaway.
Are there resident dogs at The Cottage?
No, but Liz and Neil have cocker spaniels, Chuck and Hattie, so you may well bump into them when you’re out and about.
Where are the best dog walks near The Cottage?
For a quick stroll, simply follow the Silkstone Beck that runs behind the cottage. Within a couple of minutes, you’ll find yourself in a peaceful wooded area, pictured above, with the stream running through the middle. You can cross the water via cute wooden bridges and it takes around 15 minutes to do a full loop. If you prefer to walk somewhere more open, you’ll also find steps leading up to a recreation ground, which is a great place to throw a ball around with your dog.
The Silkstone Waggonway, which follows the route of an old horse-drawn railway used to transport coal, is well worth checking out too. The bridleway runs through the village and the surrounding valley and showcases the area’s mining heritage. A five-mile circular walk will show you the main highlights but if you’d prefer something longer – or shorter – be sure to check out the local maps and walking guides at the cottage to plan your route.
You’ll also find lots of leaflets for local attractions at the cottage. Wentworth Castle Gardens is a beautiful place to enjoy a walk – although dogs must be kept on a short lead at all times due to roaming deer. Entry costs £5 per adult, or is free for National Trust members. Cannon Hall also has more than 500 acres to explore and is hugely popular with dog walkers. It’s free to visit the country park but you do have to pay for parking. When we visited, it was £1 for up to two hours. Don’t confuse the park with nearby Cannon Hall Farm, where dogs are not allowed.
What Ernie and Stan loved about The Cottage
Snoozing in front of the fire, all the toys and treats, having so many great walks nearby
What I loved about The Cottage
The homely feel, the great location, all the thoughtful little touches
How to book The Cottage
Three-night stays start from £220. You can also book special two-night stays for pamper packages and cookery courses that start from £186.50 per person. For more information or to book, call 07552 128054 or visit The Cottage Silkstone website.