An ancient stone cottage whose traditional exterior and rural setting belie its bold design and artistic pedigree.
Expect the unexpected in this eclectic rural cottage
As anybody familiar with Walltown Byre, the sister property to Lowtown Cottage, will know, its owner Sabina Forwood is the queen of vibrant colours and playful interiors. Like her larger sibling, the two-bedroom Lowtown Cottage is packed with Sabina’s signature design touches: eye-popping colours, rich textures, eclectic artworks and big views of the surrounding Northumberland countryside. An avid art collector and accomplished artist herself, Sabina encourages her guests to seek creative inspiration in the rugged countryside that envelops her homes as well as in the artworks they find within them.
First impressions of Lowtown Cottage are misleading. A narrow track brings you through acres of rolling countryside right down to an unassuming stone cottage on the edge of the Vallum. Only the dainty yellow and green sheep statue, perched on a stone at the front of the property, hints at the surprises to come.
As you approach the front door, you can glimpse a modern timber and glass extension on the west wall of the house before stepping into the converted farm cottage to discover - yellow. The entire ground floor of the cottage, comprising an open-plan kitchen, dining and sitting room and the new rear garden room, is resplendent in bright daffodil yellow. Tucked in one corner, a compact lapis blue kitchen contains everything required to rustle up delicious meals to serve at the dining table or nibbles to enjoy in the comfort of the cowhide armchairs by the inglenook fireplace.
The garden room features floor-to-ceiling windows and French doors leading out to the garden, delivering both southerly and westerly views and making it the ideal spot from which to contemplate the untouched beauty of the surrounding countryside. The peace here is complete, broken only by the calls of curlews and plovers, and the occasional passing deer.
Two vaulted en-suite bedrooms await discovery upstairs. Channel your inner Dutch master in one, where a vibrant floral print is daubed onto black wallpaper and continued in fabric adorning the blind and window seat cushions, before leading into a striking black painted bathroom. The second bedroom, dressed in striped apple green wallpaper complemented by a pink silk window seat, features a vast velvet bed flanked by bespoke Susi Bellamy lampshades and cushions.
Sabina Forwood’s interiors are not for the faint-hearted. Thought-provoking, inspiring and surprisingly restful, they invite the brave to explore colour and art in a rustic setting. Whether you envelop yourself in the romance and tranquillity of this intimate cottage with a loved one or see it as a bolthole from a larger group gathering when taken together with Walltown Byre, it will richly reward those bold enough to sleep amidst the tulips!
Access into open plan kitchen, dining area and kitchen.
Sitting room area with four armchairs set around an electric stove. Dining area with seating for four. Smart TV.
Kitchen with integrated units. Large fridge/freezer, separate grill and oven, induction hob, ¾ dishwasher, no coffee maker but includes a cafetiere. Island unit with two stools.
Utility room with separate washing machine and dryer, sink. Leads into ground floor WC.
Sunroom with large double sofa, single sofa, doors leading out to the patio area.
Bedroom one with zip and link beds which can be configured to a 6' super king bed or 3' twin beds, side table, dressing table, window seat. Hanging space and storage can be found in the in-built cupboard on the first floor landing.
En suite shower room with large shower, heated towel rail, basin and WC.
Bedroom two with king size bed, side tables, dressing table, armchair, window seat, in-built cupboard with hanging space.
En suite bathroom with bath with shower over, heated towel rail, basin and WC.
There is a patio area to the front of the property with outdoor furniture for relaxation.
There is private parking for up to three cars to the side of the property.
Babies & Children
A travel cot and highchair are available on request.
One dog is welcome at a charge of £25. A second dog will be considered on request. Dogs must be kept strictly downstairs and are not allowed on the furniture.
The property is surrounded by a stone wall to the rear with wire fencing to the front of the property, however cannot be considered to be fully enclosed or dog-proofed. The area around Lowtown is farmland therefore dogs will require full supervision and should be kept on leads when walking in the immediate vicinity due to livestock
Bed linen, towels and bath robes are provided.
Wi-Fi & Mobile Coverage
Wi-Fi is available with good speeds of up to 20MB. Mobile coverage is reasonable.
There is underfloor heating throughout the ground floor. There are thermostatically controlled radiators upstairs. There is an electric stove in the open plan living/kitchen area.
The property is secluded, detached and not overlooked. The area sits in Hadrian’s Wall Country and as a result there are likely to be walkers passing through to the rear of the property on Walltown Crags. The front facing aspect looks over rolling Northumberland countryside with plentiful wildlife.
For guests looking to holiday together, Walltown Byre sits around a quarter of a mile away and is owned by the same owner. Walltown Byre sleeps up to 6 guests.
The property manager, Lucy lives 2 minutes walk away and is an excellent chef who can provide a wide range of catering options for a very spoiling stay. Please contact her on firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to discuss catering options with her (full service dinner, pre-prepared dinners, packed lunches, canapes, breakfast or anything else!). She can also arrange a Tesco or Sainsbury’s delivery for your arrival.
For eating out, the Mile Castle pub sits 2.25 miles east along the Military Road and is within walking distance down the farm track from the property within 45 minutes or so. You will also find good pub food at the Greenhead Hotel 1.25 miles west.
Alternatively the Samson Inn, Gilsland or the Blekinsopp Castle Inn and Bistro are 2.75 and 2.9 miles respectively and both come recommended.
The Twice Brewed pub sits 4.5 miles east along the Military Road is popular choice with walkers and has its own micro-brewery, or for a stunning dining experience with a difference, head to Hjem which boasts a stunning open kitchen inspired by Scandinavian cuisine with a Tyne valley twist (21 miles).
A little further afield sits the pretty market town of Hexham (21 miles) characterised by cobbled streets and historic architecture which offers quirky coffee shops, award winning restaurants and excellent independent shops. Hexham offers more extensive shopping and amenities. 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 25 miles and offers a variety of shops, a delicatessen, and one or two restaurants and cafes, while Matfen Hall (26 miles) offers excellent spa and leisure facilities.
In the other direction, the pretty market town of Brampton,with Lanercost Priory close by, is 10 miles away and the historic city of Carlisle is 21 miles away. There is a wealth of things to see and do in Carlisle including the award winning Tullie House Museum and Gallery, Carlisle Cathedral, Carlisle Castle. Walby Park Farm is a family favourite where you can meet farmyard favourites and rare breeds with plenty of opportunity for the younger ones to burn off some steam. Carlisle offers extensive shopping, a cinema, railway station and various bars and restaurants.
If you or your guests are coming by plane or train, the new Carlisle Airport, with flights from Southend, Belfast and Dublin, is 16 miles away. Car hire is available at the airport.
Newcastle and Carlisle have main line train services with direct trains to London and Edinburgh/Glasgow, and there is a local train between Newcastle and Carlisle which stops at Haltwhistle which is 2.5 miles away.
There is a bus (the AD122) linking the major Roman sites, together with Hexham and Haltwhistle which has a stop at the Roman Army Museum which is ¾ mile from the Byre or a 15 minute walk. This runs between Easter and the 1st October.
Surrounded by footpaths and bridleways, big skies and wonderful views, the area has plenty to offer those seeking dramatic ridges and panoramic views.
For walking, the Hadrian’s Wall National Trail is a designated World Heritage site with an unbroken 84 mile signposted trail stretching from coast-to-coast, passing through stunning countryside and rugged moorland. The Byre is some three miles from the intersection of the Hadrian's Wall trail and the Pennine Way making it a walkers' paradise.
Notable visitor attractions include the English Heritage site of Walltown Crags Wall and Turret, one of the finest places to view Hadrian's Wall, as well as the Roman Army Museum which sit less than a mile away from the property. The Sill, Vindolanda, and Housesteads are all within a ten minute drive.
Hadrian's cycleway runs from coast-to-coast and is part of the National Cycle Network boasting incredible scenery which takes in various forts, milecastles and settlements along the line of the wall. As well as off-road options, it boasts 100 miles of purpose-built trails for the peddle-hungry looking to soak up mile after mile of never-ending trails.
For history buffs, this is a perfect base from which to explore 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, and discover latest artefacts, including the world famous Vindolanda writing tablets.
For some later history, visit Hermitage Castle (60 minutes), a Norman Castle built in 1240AD and famous for a visit there by Mary Queen of Scots to the wounded 4th Earl of Bothwell. She later married Bothwell, despite the fact that he was implicated in her husband's murder.
Lanercost Priory, founded in 1169AD is only 18 minutes drive away. It is partly built from stones from Hadrian’s wall and was visited a number of times by Edward I. In August 1311, Robert Bruce, King of Scotland, came with his army and made it his headquarters for three days.
You can enjoy plenty of outdoor adventures in over 13,000 acres at Wallington Hall (45 minutes) 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. For less active pursuits, head to the Clocktower Cafe for a coffee and cake stop, or take a tour of the main house for a fascinating insight into the rich history and artefacts of this 300 year old home.
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.
A 45 minute drive will take you to the Kielder Water and Forest Park, 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.
Golf enthusiasts are well catered for at Matfen Hall, or take a drive to the championship courses of Close House and Slaley Hall.
The stunning beaches of the Northumberland coast are an easy day trip, including the iconic Alnwick Gardens and Alnwick Castle, home to the Duke of Northumberland. 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.
To the West, the coast of the Solway is 50 minutes away and the North of the Lake District is well within reach, with Ullswater, for example, being a 60 minute drive
Finally a trip to the city of Newcastle with its amazing Millennium revolving eye bridge and the fantastic glass Sage building for music. Admire the wonderful architecture of the north-east’s most eminent architect John Dobson or perhaps enjoy an evening of arts at the wonderful Theatre Royal.
Cooks and chefs
Make your stay hassle-free with your own personal cookFind Out More
Award yourself a real break and let us provide a pair (or more) of helping hands.Find Out More
Babysitting and nannies
Relax, explore the local area, enjoy a long lunch or a romantic evening out by hiring one of our fully qualified registered and experienced nannies or babysitters to come to your house.Find Out More
Our experienced dog sitters will look after your furry friends whilst you are out exploring.Find Out More
Crabtree & Crabtree have teamed up with Corney & Barrow one of the longest established independent Wine Merchants in the UK to offer a bespoke service.Find Out More
Fresh cut flowers delivered to your holiday home.Find Out More
Family holidays, reunions and honeymoons kindle priceless moments that deserve preserving.Find Out More
Beauty and spa treatments
Everyone needs some pampering, whatever the occasion.Find Out More
- One dog is welcome with a charge of £25. A second dog will be considered on request.
- Typical arrival day: Friday during high season. Flexible out of high season.
- Arrival time: 4pm
- Departure time: 10am
"Watching the deer warm themselves in the morning sun from the comfort of your bedroom window seat."Sabina, owner of Lowtown Cottage