15% launch discount on 7 night stays and 10% discount on 3-4 night stays throughout September and October 2023.
A classic country-house cottage in the midst of Northumberland’s National Park.
An elegant cottage that places everything from stargazing and fishing to dog walks and bike rides on your doorstep
For those seeking a peaceful rural escape, Birks Stable Cottage is hard to beat with its tranquil setting within the Northumberland National Park, between Hadrian’s Wall and the Scottish border. For all its blissful isolation in the rugged upland hill farming Tarset valley, the property is a mere twenty-minute drive east of Kielder Water and ten minutes’ drive west of the historical market town of Bellingham, with its pretty ivy-clad stone cottages, charming pubs and 11th-century St Cuthbert's Church.
Birks Stable Cottage used to serve as the kitchen and laundry for the main house at The Birks, but has emerged from a recent renovation as an elegant three-bedroom home. Built from soft golden sandstone punctured by tall sash windows, the cottage benefits from underfloor heating throughout the ground floor and a walled patio garden, which makes a sun-drenched spot for morning coffee or pre-dinner drinks.
Stepping into the hallway, you’ll find the kitchen to your right and dining area to your left, flanked on two sides by large windows. The sitting room, which also boasts dual-aspect windows, leads off from the dining area and is warmed by a large fireplace with an ornately carved mantlepiece. Decorated with carefully selected antique furnishings and overlooking the patio garden, the sitting room is an idyllic place in which to relax, read and catch up with loved ones. The kitchen features a range cooker and standalone fridge/freezer, with additional appliances found in a separate utility room.
The ground floor further houses a separate WC and a double bedroom, which features a large ensuite walk-in shower room that’s perfect for guests with restricted mobility.
The cottage offers another two bedrooms, a double and a twin, and a bathroom on the freshly refurbished first-floor, where sloping ceilings are dotted with skylights on both sides to enable light to flood in. Continuing the natural colour palette of the ground floor, the bedrooms are decorated in mossy green, dusky heather, and earthy tones with framed botanical prints and antique furniture completing the classic country house feel.
Walkers, runners and cyclists alike will find countless trails and routes to explore in the larger Tarset valley and on the shores of Kielder Water & Forest Park, England’s largest forest and Northern Europe’s biggest man-made lake. For those seeking a challenge, Kielder also hosts a well-attended annual mountain bike race and marathon.
For more gentle pursuits, Birks Stable Cottage is ideally placed for anglers, who can enjoy boat and bank fishing on Kielder Water as well as trout and salmon fishing on the nearby North Tyne and Rede rivers. Golfers meanwhile have the 18-hole Bellingham golf course on their doorstep. Dating to 1893 and known as Northumberland’s friendliest 18-hole golf club, the par 70 Bellingham course delivers changes of direction and elevation, pretty streams, towering specimen trees, deep ravines and sweeping views across the North Tyne valley.
Finally, Birks Stable Cottage sits within Europe’s largest International Dark Sky Park, making it a prime spot from which to enjoy unparalleled stargazing. With only two streetlamps in the entire Tarset valley, you’ll be able to soak up views of thousands of stars, the Milky Way and Andromeda Galaxy from the comfort of the cottage garden. Alternatively, get more technical with your stargazing by visiting the Kielder Observatory or dropping into the Battlesteads pub in Wark, which boasts a Dark Sky Observatory and is just under 7 miles away.
Access door into a hallway with the kitchen to the right and dining room to the left.
Small kitchen with electric oven and hob, dishwasher, free-standing fridge/freezer (2 drawer), console table with two stools. Directly off the kitchen is a utility room with sink, washing machine, microwave, and a drying pulley.
Separate cloakroom with WC and basin off the kitchen and utility room. Small rear hall with hanging space for outdoor wear.
Dining room with table and seating for up to six guests.
Sitting room with large sofa, two armchairs, Smart TV, large selection of books, open fire.
Bedroom one with king size bed, side tables, large wardrobe with drawers.
En suite bathroom with large walk-in shower (rainforest head and separate mixer), heated towel rail, basin and WC.
Bedroom two with super king bed with zip and link option which can be configured a twin on request, side tables, large wardrobe with drawers, chair, bookshelf with a selection of books. This room has four velux windows with blackout blinds.
Bathroom with bath with shower mixer tap, radiator, basin and WC.
Bedroom three with twin beds, side tables, chest of drawers. This room has two velux windows with blackout blinds.
Garden to the side and front of the property comprising a patio area with herbaceous borders to the side with bench seating and a bistro cafe table and chairs. A barbecue is not available.
There is ample private parking for 3-4 cars on the gravelled courtyard to the front of the cottage.
ELECTRIC VEHICLE CHARGING
For safety reasons, we do not permit electric vehicle or hybrid car charging at this property. If you’re travelling by EV, discover your nearest electric vehicle charging point here.
BABIES & CHILDREN
Babies and children are welcome and a travel cot and high chair can be provided on request.
One well-behaved dog is welcome at a charge of £25 but it must be clean and dry before access into the property and then kept to the kitchen and utility room only. It is not permitted on the furniture or upstairs in the bedrooms. It is important to note that the cottage is set within the curtilage of a private house and surrounded by farmland with livestock and horses. Dogs must therefore, be closely supervised at all times and kept onleads when out and about. The garden is not fully enclosed.
All bed linens and towels are included. Duvets and pillows are hypoallergenic. Hand soaps and shower/bath wash is provided. A hairdryer is available in the two main bedrooms on the ground floor and first floor.
WI-FI & MOBILE COVERAGE
Wi-Fi is available. Mobile reception is reasonable across most networks.
Oil-fired heating with underfloor heating throughout the ground floor and radiators upstairs. Open fire in the sitting room with a generous initial supply of logs provided.
Birks Stable Cottage is a detached property with the main house directly adjacent. There are a number of farm cottages a few hundred yards away.
The North Tyne Hunt kennels sit approximately 0.5km from Birks Stable Cottage. Outdoors, guests may hear the hounds for short periods, particularly around feeding time in the morning or evening. Please contact us should you have any concerns.
Nearby Bellingham sits 5 miles from Birks Stable Cottage, often known as the gateway to Kielder Water & Forest Park (14.4 miles). Bellingham supports two cafes, a butchers shop, a small Co-op store, and a handful of independent shops as well as a couple of pubs and a brewery.
The Pheasant Inn at Stannersburn (5 miles) is a traditional Northumbrian pub serving hearty home-cooked food, and the Holly Bush Inn at Greenhaugh is another great option for breakfasts, lunches or evening dining using fresh, locally sourced produce.
A little further afield sits the pretty market town of Hexham (20 miles) characterised by cobbled streets and historic architecture which offers quirky coffee shops, excellent local shopping and award-winning restaurants, including Michelin-starred Restaurant Hjem. It also boasts its own racecourse, theatre, cinema, golf course and leisure centre, including a pool and a tenpin bowling alley.
The popular tourist village of Corbridge is 22.5 miles away and offers a variety of shops, a delicatessen, and one or two restaurants and cafes, while nearby Matfen Hall (22 miles) offers excellent spa and leisure facilities.
Sitting in the heart of the Northumberland countryside, Birks Stable Cottage is the perfect base to explore the wider area, located deep in Roman Wall country, surrounded by footpaths and bridleways, beautiful views, big skies and wonderful wildlife.
A short twenty-minute drive will take you to the Kielder Water and Forest Park, the largest man-made lake in northern Europe with something for everyone including water sports enthusiasts, cyclists, walkers, naturalists, artists, families and photographers. A highlight is the star gazing treat at the Kielder Observatory where you can view the outstanding dark skies of the Northumberland National Park using powerful telescopes and may even be lucky enough to see a passing comet or stunning meteor shower.
For history buffs, this is a perfect base from which to explore Hadrian’s Wall, Chesters and Vindolanda which are steeped in Roman history and offer a fascinating insight into Roman life on the edge of the empire 2000 years ago. Here you can see in incredible 3D detail what life was like on the wall in the life of a Roman soldier, discover latest artefacts, including the world-famous Vindolanda writing tablets.
You can enjoy plenty of outdoor adventures in over 13,000 acres at Wallington Hall (22 miles), with gentle woodland strolls to more extensive hikes, or take your bike and explore the Dragon Cycling Trail, a safe family-friendly route where you may be lucky enough to spot one of the resident red squirrels in the woods.
Avid anglers can spend their day fishing on the nearby River North Tyne, known for its superb wild trout fishing; or golf fans can perfect their swing at nearby Bellingham.
Vallum Farm and Restaurant (8 miles) is an incredibly popular spot with a fantastic patisserie and deli, or why not try your hand at something new with Vallum artisans (booking required), such as craft beer and pie tasting, ice-cream making, cheese making, or cooking experiences. For children, there’s an outdoor play paddock and wildlife walks with other seasonal events.
Cragside House and Gardens offer a captivating day out for the family where you can discover the first house in the world to be lit by hydroelectricity. Crammed full of gadgets developed by Victorian inventor, innovator and landscape genius, Lord Armstrong, Cragside is truly a wonder of its age. The adventure playground with its network of paths and tunnels will be a huge hit with children, and the gardens here are an absolute delight.
For a spot of shopping, visit some of the delightful market towns such as Morpeth, Alnwick, and Hexham with their open air markets, great selection of shops and many art galleries showcasing the work of local artists.
Also within easy reach are the award-winning Alnwick Gardens and Alnwick Castle, home to the Duke of Northumberland and one of Britain’s most iconic castles. With its rich history, exquisite art, beautiful gardens, and film location for Harry Potter, there is plenty of wizardly magic and mayhem to keep all ages entertained.
- One dog is welcome with a charge of £25.
- Typical arrival day: Friday during high season with the addition of Monday out of high season.
- Arrival time: 4pm
- Departure time: 10am
"The Cottage’s tranquil setting within the National Park and International Dark Sky Park make it the ideal spot from which to soak up Northumberland’s natural beauty."Emma, owner of Birks Stable Cottage