Hi, we're Philip and Lynn Gregory and we have two wonderful holiday cottages for hire in the idyllic country village of Bamburgh. We've created this blog to provide anyone who's thinking of visiting the region with some great ideas on how to make the most of your trip.

Our Cottages

Our Cottages
Our self catering family holiday cottages are located along one of the most breathtakingly picturesque coastal regions in the north east, with nearby Bamburgh castle towering 150 ft above the sea. If you're interested in finding out more and possibly making a booking, why not take a look at our website.

Friday, 9 December 2011

If you're feeling a little chilly in Northumberland this December and January. English Heritage has plenty to warm your spirit with seven stunning historic properties open every weekend in the county. Enjoy a season of festive events, blow away the cobwebs with bracing winter walks, stock up on Christmas gifts and goodies and marvel at gorgeous winter gardens.

Monday, 26 September 2011

According to travel writer Edoardo Albert, if hell is other people, then vast, empty Northumberland could be the entrance to the pearly gates. We think there’s plenty of exciting things to do in Northumberland, but if its tranquillity you crave – we can offer that too. Head for the Cheviot Hills – the least-visited part of the least-visited national park in England. But the Cheviots have more than just splendid isolation to recommend it. There’s geology (worn-down volcanoes and built-up silt), archaeological significance (hunters, gatherers, hill-forts), and history (the Romans came, looked around and went back behind the wall.) But mostly, says Edoardo, it’s a land of impressions, of cloud shapes cast upon hills of green and brown, the brief blaze of heather and the fleeting glory of hill meadows. Come stand on a cloud flecked hill and hear the voice of the wind – you’ll be the only one listening!

Tuesday, 30 August 2011

Things to do in September

Exciting things to do in September in Northumberland

Brass Band Sundays at Belsay Hall, Castle and Gardens
Every Sunday in September from 3pm
Adults £7.50 / Conc £6.80 / Child £4.50/ Family £19.50 / Members Free

Vintage Car Show at Belsay Hall, Castle and Gardens
On Sun 12 Sep from 11am
Adults £7.50 / Conc £6.80 / Child £4.50/ Family £19.50 / Members Free

Northumberland National Park's Heritage Open Days: Free visits to the special historic buildings of North Tyne and Redesdale on September 10 – 11

For 2011’s Heritage Open Days, Northumberland National Park Authority has organised a weekend of free guided visits to five historical sites that are difficult to find or not normally open to the public.

The five historical sites are:

Elsdon Tower

Bellingham Heritage Centre and the Stannersburn Forge

Otterburn Ranges - Bastles

Mitford Family Church, Horsley

Catcleugh Black House and Byrness Church

Alnwick Garden
2nd September 2011
Guided tour of The Alnwick Garden
Every week The Garden changes, join a member of the gardening team for a tour to share their love of the garden and all it…

2nd September 2011
Dance for Fun
This activity explores dance genres of the 20th century. The sessions are light-hearted and focus on the participants exploring their creativity and performance skills.

2nd September 2011
Garden Baby Boogie
Music and dancing, laughter and love. All part of Lynn Campbell’s wonderful Baby Boogie classes here in The Alnwick Garden. 11.15am in the Pavilion.

Tuesday, 2 August 2011

Its Summer Time in Northumberland

It’s summer time in Northumberland and we’re ready to welcome you to our beautiful county in the North East of England.

We have more than 150 attractions for you to visit, ranging from castles and historic sites including Hadrian's Wall, gardens and stately homes, museums, and plenty of places to visit along the coast and in the countryside.

Fans of the great outdoors will love our walking and cycling routes. If you love nature be sure to come birdwatching and wildlife watching with us. We also have plenty of adventure activities for the thrill-seekers among you.

Why not book a local tour guide? With their in-depth knowledge of what to see and where to go you’ll be sure to have an action-packed break.

With so many events and festivals taking place across the county during these summer months you’ll be sure to find something for the whole family.

Tuesday, 24 May 2011

Fun for all the family in Northumberland

Northumberland has some of the most iconic historic sites in England, including internationally famous sites such as Hadrian’s Wall and the Holy Island of Lindisfarne. Whilst you stay at one of our cottages in Bamburgh, English Heritage has some of the most beautiful and captivating historic sites here, as well as an action packed programme of living history events.

There’s something for everyone at English Heritage properties, from the tranquil settings of Lindisfarne Priory and sweeping views at Warkworth Castle and dramatic coastal views at Dunstanburgh Castle to a fantastic family day out exploring Belsay Hall, Castle and Gardens. Discover exciting Roman history at some of the best preserved sites on Hadrian’s Wall at Chesters Roman Fort, Housesteads Roman Fort and Corbridge Roman Town.

So whether you want to be king or queen of the castle, find a knight in shining armour or just simply enjoy a picnic in a secluded spot, there are enough historical happenings on tap at many English Heritage locations across the county. Remember to take a visit to Berwick-upon-Tweed Barracks and Main Guard which was one of the first in England to be purpose built.

Events run all year long, with trails for children, Roman soldier training, gallant gladiators and noble knights battling against each other, as well as dramatic open air theatre there’s never a dull moment!

Monday, 18 April 2011

Alnwick Castle and Garden

While staying at one of our Bamburgh Holiday Cottages why not visit the Alnwick Garden. Thanks to some lovely spring sunshine, the cherry blossom has arrivied early, and it’s almost MAD HATTER WEEK. From Monday 18th - Friday 22nd April, discover fancy hats, tiny cakes and family songs and games as The Garden becomes Wonderland. In a workshop to make a hat the Mad Hatter would be proud of, use buttons, feathers and your imagination. The Mad Hatter’s tea party wouldn’t be complete without cupcakes; everyone loves them. Decorate your own with icing and glitter.

Saturday 23rd April is ST GEORGE’S DAY. Come along to The Garden to meet bearded and frilled dragons, including a new baby! They'll also be St George’s Day crafts.

Then it’s on to EASTER, on Sunday 24th and Monday 25th April. Join Storytelling Laureate and world-renowned storyteller Taffy Thomas, as he gathers you round for heartwarming traditional Easter stories. After stories, decorate a pace egg and carry it to the top of Egg Hill to recreate the ancient art of egg-rolling.

OPEN EVERY DAY 10AM – 6PM Don’t miss new ranges of local produce in the Gift Shop, including delicious fudge in all kinds of wonderful flavours.

At Alnwick Castle, broomstick-riding lessons on the very spot where Harry and his friends took their first class. and workshops to make wands and charms, are followed by a whole weekend of fun inspired by George and the dragon. A combined ticket to Garden and Castle lasts two whole days, so you can enjoy it all.

Monday, 4 April 2011

The Farne Islands

Rocky islands once home to saints, soldiers and lighthouse keepers, now a sanctuary for seabirds and seals.

Our cotages in Bamburgh are the ideal place to stay to visit The Farne Islands. We would recommend going to The Farnes with Billy Shiel from Seahouses, only 3 miles away from Bamburgh and Bamburgh Holiday Cottages.

The Farne Islands are a haven for over 100,000 pairs of nesting seabirds such a sthe Puffin and Gulliemot. It also has one of Europe's largest grey seal colonies.

So there is no time to waste - we still have a few weeks left for the peak viewing period

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

Spring into action at Bamburgh

While staying in Bamburgh at one of our holiday homes in the village of Bamburgh, Spring is the perfect time to visist the gardens at Howick Hall, with their extensive grounds offering a stunning variety of plants throughout the year.

This variety was recognised by the BBC Gardener's World Magazine when it named Howick Hall & Gardens one of the top five coastal gardens in the country. The gardens were also rated by The Independent as one of the best ten gardens to visit during the Spring.

Howick Hall's year starts with Snowdrop Walks every February before the gardens are carpeted in vibrant yellow daffodils between March and May. Late spring also sees the woodland garden flourish with varieties including camellias, magnolias and rhododendrons.

The more formal borders and terraces are best seen in June and the bog garden, with its unusual herbaceous plants grown from seed collected in the wild, is at its best in July, August and September. Howick Hall & Gardens is also worth a visit in Autumn, when the fading leaves produce a spectacular display of colour across the estate.

There is also an Arboretum covering 65 acres of woodland walks and containing 1,800 different species of trees and shrubs , most of which are labelled.

Families can take the Howick Family Challenge, a nature trail through the woodland walks which gets you looking for red squirrels, ducks and even herons.

There's also The Earl Grey Tea Room which serves light lunches, snacks and afternoon teas. Howick was the Grey family seat and was home to Charles, Second Earl Grey, who introduced the Great Reform Bill of 1832, although he is perhaps better known today for having "invented" Earl Grey Tea.

Extensive grounds opening with 'Snowdrops Walks' in February, a spectacular display of daffodils in late March to May, the woodland garden (Silverwood) contains lovely azaleas, camellias, magnolias and rhododendrons which flourish from late March to end May. Eucryphias, hydrangeas and viburnums bloom in summer and the formal gardens, borders and terraces in front of Howick Hall come on from June - the agapanthus on the 2nd terrace are a special feature.

A pond and bog garden have been developed and planted with herbaceous material grown from seed collected in the wild on plant hunting expeditions abroad and is at its best in July, August and September.

The Arboretum opened in 2006 and covers about 65 acres of woodland walks and is planted with about 1,800 different species of trees and shrubs. The new 'Howick Family Challenge' opened in 2008 - a nature trail through the arboretum which poses about 12 questions - look out for red squirrels, swans, ducks and herons! Howick is well worth a visit in the late season when the autumn colour can be brilliant.

The gardens at Howick are deliberately aimed at garden lovers and we intend to keep them free from commercial exploitation. The Earl Grey Tea House is open to visitors to the Garden and serves light lunches, snacks and afternoon tea - Earl Grey of course since Howick was his home!

Monday, 31 January 2011

Calling all Love Birds

Surprise your loved one this Valentine’s Day with a romantic interlude in North East England, with its idyllic places to hide away, beautiful accommodation and fine restaurants.
Stay at one of our delightful seaside cottages in Bamburgh, with romantic walks on the beach and evening by the fire in a cosy pub, theer is no better way to spoil your loved one this Valentine's Day.
Set the scene with an enchanting walk along Durham’s tranquil riverside or stroll hand in hand along one of our peaceful golden beaches. Or why not pack a picnic and escape to the magical Holy Island to savour real quality time surrounded by the breathtaking views?

Wander the woodland paths of Gibside, Belsay or Howick Hall and Gardens and see the nodding white heads of the snowdrops announcing that spring is on its way. Indulge your love of the finer things in life at Rockcliffe House or Jesmopnd Dene House, or make a romantic gesture with a difference: a hot air balloon over Durham or star gazing at Keilder Forest and Country Park.