What’s The Reading Room like?
Fans of quirky design will love this converted Wesleyan chapel, which sleeps two. Owner Cressida has sympathetically transformed the building – which dates back to 1850 – into a beautiful holiday home with nods to its religious past throughout. The market town of King’s Lynn is approximately 10 minutes away by car.
How dog-friendly is The Reading Room?
Very good. You’ll need to bring your own beds, bowls and food but there are no rules about where dogs cannot go in the property. The garden is also absolutely huge – and entirely secure as long as the main gates are closed. Up to two dogs are welcome to stay at The Reading Room for no additional charge.
Tell me more about The Reading Room
This beautifully converted chapel is a luxurious hideaway for two, with the downstairs living area mostly open plan. On one side, you’ll find a huge velvet sofa in front of an open fire, adorned with snuggly cushions and throws. And on the other side, you’ll find a large wooden dining table. An industrial-style kitchen runs along the back of the property (keep reading to find out more) and just off of this lies the gorgeous shower room, which is flooded with light.
From the main living space, a set of stairs leads up to a mezzanine level, which houses an incredibly comfy kingsize bed and standalone bath. These are set against a faux panelled wall, which gives it a real sense of grandeur. Reminders of the building’s religious past form part of the decor – think busts of monks, decorative wooden features and giant statues above the imposing front door, which was salvaged from a church in Scotland.
There is underfloor heating throughout – a real treat if you visit during the winter months, like we did. And lots of books and games are provided for guests to enjoy on rainy days. If the weather is good when you visit though, there is plenty of outdoor space to enjoy. As well as a huge grassy lawn framed by willow trees, there is a gravelled area big enough to park at least three cars and some raised decking complete with garden furniture. Amazing!
What’s the food like at The Reading Room?
This is a self-catering property so you’ll need to bring your own, but the fantastically well-stocked kitchen makes cooking a joy. The metal units look like they’ve come straight out of a professional kitchen and house almost every every utensil, pan and gadget you can think of. The colourful cups, plates and bowls are also lovely and there’s a great selection of herbs, oils and condiments available for guest use.
If you don’t fancy cooking, there are plenty of dog-friendly places to eat nearby. The village pub – The Crown & Anchor – is in the process of being bought and run by the community. And foodies will be thrilled to learn that The Angel in Watlington, which has 2 AA Rosettes and has won countless awards, is just down the road. The Warehouse Taproom, in nearby Setchey, is also well worth a visit – and it’s next-door to one of the biggest beer shops in Britain.
Are there resident dogs at The Reading Room?
No, but you may well hear some of the neighbours’ dogs during your stay.
Where are the best dog walks near The Reading Room?
The Reading Room is just a short walk from the imposing River Great Ouse, where you can stroll for miles in either direction. But be sure to check out St Peter at Wiggenhall, pictured above – one of more than 100 ruined churches in Norfolk, and surely one of the most impressive. It takes around 25 minutes to walk from The Reading Room to the roofless church, which was abandoned in the 1950s when a relief channel was dug for the river.
Dogs will also love visiting Bawsey Country Park, just outside King’s Lynn. This peaceful haven, which was originally created by sand quarrying, spans more than 180 acres and has several walking trails around lakes and woodland. There is even a lovely sandy beach. Click here to see the recommended routes. The park also has a great pet-friendly cafe – remember to pre-order your dog a sausage before you set off on a walk so it’s ready for when you get back.
What Ernie and Stan loved about The Reading Room
Having such an enormous garden to explore, the cosy underfloor heating
What I loved about The Reading Room
The quirky property, the peaceful location, the fabulous outdoor space
How to book The Reading Room
Overnight stays start from £90 a night, plus a cleaning and booking fee. A two-night minimum applies. For more information or to book, visit The Reading Room’s Airbnb listing.