Jump into the hot tub. Maybe the horses will say hi over the fence. Harecroft Cottages sit on a working farm, sleeping 16 friends andfamily (plus dogs) in Shropshire’s Welsh border country. It is the perfect place for family celebrations of all ages with a downstairs bedroom and bathroom and specially designed quiet areas to retreat to. The two cottages connect for super-celebrations, and with nature, too, with meadows hugging the Severn. Fish or swim from the banks.
With a choice of outdoor seating, you get to move with the sunshine among the spacious lawns and wraparound patios. Stay out there for supper around the built-in barbecue with prime cuts from Churncote Farm Shop. Grab a throw and make a night of it around the firepit.
Socialise in the garden room with heat from the double-sided stove and fizz from the wine fridge. Get up only to win at table football. Let the kids take over the snug. Cook on the range or call in the pros from Goose on the Loose while you chill in the Royal Hill with a draught beer on the banks of the Severn.
You could live your whole life outdoors here. With spacious lawns, contemporary handmade lounge seating and a choice of spots in which to catch the morning sun with a coffee, the garden’s a whole other room. Jump into the six-seater hot tub and watch the horses in the field amble over.
The meadows here give way to the River Severn: fish from its banks or bring your cossie for a wild swim. Fire up the built-in coal barbecue and fill the evening air with the aroma of prime-cut meat from Churncote Farm Shop. Save a sausage for the dog. Stay out under the stars with a cardie or a throw and yakkety-yak around the firepit.
You’ll find some famous names dotted around the two buildings at Harecroft Cottages: Farrow and Ball, Voyage, Laura Ashley, Sanderson and Christian Lacroix to namedrop just a few. They’re there as the cornerstones of a stylish renovation to make your stay as comfortable as possible.
In two cottages, pick from two sitting rooms in which to catch up on Netflix and Amazon Prime Video, streamed over BT Infinity Wi-Fi. Bring your passwords for the smart TVs. Let the kids snuggle up in the snug. Socialise in the garden room with the double-sided logburner and the table footie.
Maybe you want to show off your prowess. Great. The two range ovens and electric hobs in state-of-the-art kitchens will be glad to help. Or maybe you’d prefer to potter the gardens or take a tipple in the Royal Hill while the lamb gently slow-cooks. Call up our chef friends from Goose on the Loose.
Shop for goodies at Churncote Farm Shop or at Shrewsbury Market Hall, winner of Britain’s Best independent Market, with street food and seafood booths, plus delis. Sit in the chalet and enjoy a bite and a glass of chilled white. Wander over to lovely Wyle Cop to buy wines from Tanner’s.
You’ll get 16 around the dining table indoors and the same outside (with room for snacking around the bistro table and by the hot tub). Sit out in the sunshine with takeaways from Saffron Cottage, Blue Jade Chinese and Castle Thai. Or pop out to the riverside Royal Hill for a pizza, burger or carvery.
Pub it at the child- and dog-friendly Three Pigeons opposite Nesscliffe Country Park with its walks and highwayman’s cave. Try multicultural House of the Rising Sun, Shrewsbury’s first street-food restaurant. Or sit out on the river terrace at The Boathouse for gold-battered haddock and charcoal-cooked steaks.
An acre of securely fenced gardens for dogs surrounds the cottages leading out onto a meadow that envelops the cottages on all sides, the only sounds to disturb your dreams might be from the barn owls and the call of the peacocks on the farm. Add Egyptian cotton and memory foam mattress toppers and early rising might be out of the question. Several of the rooms will fit a cot.
In Hare Cottage, bedroom one is a downstairs room with a kingsize bed and private bathroom, while bedroom two is a double, also with private bathroom. Bedroom three offers two bunks and a single bed, and the master bedroom is a kingsize with en-suite and a large shower.
In Fox Cottage, bedroom five offers a double bed, while bedroom six is another bunks room sleeping three. Bedroom seven is the master, a lovely kingsize en-suite with bath.