Access Statement

Introduction

Manor Holding is a Grade II Listed, small half-timbered cottage farmhouse, in the heart of the ancient forest of Wyre.  It stands half a kilometre from the nearest tarmac paved public road (itself a winding country lane, slippery in winter, steep in places and with numerous blind corners.  NB. Avoid the southern approach from the A4117, Far Forest in icy weather).  The cottage is set in 2ha (5.5 acres) of wild flower meadows and ancient orchards (Site of Special Scientific Interest), and reached by a 2.7m (8’10”) minimum width, rough forest track with passing places, named Kingswood Lane  (classified as a bridleway), leading to a narrow (2.4m / 7’10”) grassy drive between overhanging hedges (classified as a public footpath and part of the “Abberley and Malvern Hills Geopark Way” long distance footpath).

Information

For further general information about the holiday accommodation at Manor Holding or about the surrounding area please see our website at www.wyreforestcottage.com .  For more detailed information including availability please contact us by:

Email:

relax@wyreforestcottage.com

Mobile:

+44(0) 797 026 0010

Telephone:

+44(0) 165 288 3609

Post:

Nigel and Penny Dobson-Smyth
32 Church Street
Hagley
Stourbridge
Worcestershire
DY9 0NA
UK

Information is normally emailed or posted in the form of a black and white leaflet.  This can be provided in large format if requested.  Photographs in addition to those on various websites advertising Manor Holding, both of the inside and exterior of the cottage, are available by email on request.

More detailed information, including directions to the cottage, is provided with the receipts for each of your payments, building up a mass of useful information likely to assist you in preparing for your stay.

A small well organised library of information about local attractions and wildlife etc, is kept in the cottage.  Essential information is available in larger format.

Booking

A hyperlink to the booking form can be found on the Booking Page of the Wyre Forest Cottage web site.  This form can be completed and submitted on line or printed and submitted by post.  Alternatively all information including the booking form is available by surface post on request.

Provided Manor Holding Cottage or Manor Holding Byre is still available for the relevant dates, bookings can be secured up to 8 weeks before arrival, by submitting a completed booking form, and payment of £100 deposit for each week or part week to be booked.

The balance of the cost for your stay should be forwarded to arrive not later than 6 weeks before your arrival.  Failing which your booking will lapse.  (A lapsed booking may be reinstated on payment of the outstanding balance up to 1 week before your arrival, provided no-one else has booked the cottage in the meantime)

If the relevant holiday accommodation unit is still available booking may be made within 8 weeks of arrival by submitting a completed booking form together with full payment for the period to be booked.  This is termed a “Full Payment Booking”.

Payment

Payment may be made by a variety of means for deposit, balance or full payment bookings, including:

  • Cheque (Personal, Business, or Traveller’s) made out in Pounds Sterling (GBP) to NW & PAG Dobson-Smyth and posted to 32 Church Street, Hagley, Stourbridge, DY9 0NA, UK; or
  • Bank Transfer from overseas to IBAN: GB91 BUKB 208270 83 058 158, SwiftBIC: BUK BGB 22;
  • Bank Transfer from UK to Barclays Bank Sort Code: 208270, Account No: 83 058 158

 

  • PayPal using the PayPal Single Week Deposit Button on the Wyre Forest Cottage website Booking Page (£100 including VAT per click); or
  • Emailed PayPal invoice for balance and full payment booking payments; or
  • Cash in Pounds Sterling (GBP) or Euros.

 

Both PayPal accept a wide variety of cards or other payment methods.

 

We do not refund payments in case of cancellation, unless the cancellation is occasioned by ourselves or alternative paying guests are found to take the relevant period.  Guests are therefore advised to take out holiday insurance. (Provided by others)

Travel

The nearest (10ml by road) mainline railway station is Kidderminster, but the Severn Valley Railway operates a regular, volunteer run, train service from there to Bewdley and Arley, both closer (5&4ml) to Manor Holding accessed through the forest via Sustrans’ Mercian Way (National Cycle Route 45). (Forest route map supplied with balance receipt)

For mainline train times contact National Rail Enquiries on 44 (0) 8457 48 49 50 or online at www.nationalrail.co.uk.

For Severn Valley Rail train times check online at http://www.svr.co.uk/CalendarTimetable.aspx

There is a taxi rank at Kidderminster Station.  To prebook a taxi or for longer distances including airports:

Abbey Taxis: 44(0) 1299 403 393

Bewdley Private Hire: 44(0) 1299 400 000 or 44(0) 796 217 9657

Detailed directions to Manor Holding and a simplified location map will be issued with the receipt for your booking payment.  Please ask if you want directions via Sustrans’ National Cycle Route 45 as well.

Arrival by bus is not recommended for those with a lot of luggage, as it is a long walk to the cottage from the nearest bus stops at Button Bridge (2ml /3km) and Far Forest (2.5ml/4km).

Bus services from Far Forest west to Cleobury Mortimer and Ludlow or east to Bewdley and Kidderminster (town centre bus station) include Service Number 292.

Bus services from Button Bridge north to Highley and Bridgnorth or east to Bewdley, Kidderminster (town centre bus station) and Stourbridge Town station include the 125.

For bus timetable information contact Traveline West Midlands on 44(0) 871 200 22 33.

Arrival

Together the two units at Manor Holding have private parking for 6 cars or more in a central yard, but the drive at 2.4m (7’10”) is rather narrow for larger motorhomes or horse boxes. Once the hay is cut these can be accommodated by prior arrangement in the field off the bottom of the drive.

The parking yard is paved with water bound macadam, topped with loose pea gravel.  (Not so loose adjacent the Byre entrance to facilitate wheelchair access to the Byre)

The yard has movement sensitive automatic lighting; and is sheltered somewhat from wind by the Byre on the north, the Cottage on the south, a high bank and hedge to the east and ruined stone outhouse to the west.

Main Cottage Entrance

The principal entrance is via the west door at the lower end of the house, and is visible from the bottom of the yard.  There is a movement sensitive exterior light overhead.

The door is 3m (10’) from the nearest parking space and reached via a 1.2m (4’) wide brick path flush with the yard.  To prevent ingress of water, the carved stone threshold rises 5cm (2”) above foot path level in two 2.5cm (1”) steps 20cm (8”) apart.  The door opens inward towards the right to give a 65cm (26”) width clear opening.  The key hole is on the left of the door, at a height of 107cm (43”) above the threshold.

Inside the west door a large doormat is recessed into the wax polished hand-made terracotta floor tiles.  These large tiles are by nature shallowly domed and variable giving a slightly uneven surface.  Their warm colouring contrasts with the off white walls and honey coloured oak doors and skirting.

Yard Door

A new inward opening utility doorway (80cm width clear opening x 189cm height) accessing the boiler / laundry room and and downstairs toilet from the top of the yard will be made available for guest use, by prior arrangement only, from summer 2019.  Key hole and separate handle on left of door at 93cm (3′) height.  Threshold matches those of other external doors, but external pea gravel surface and internal sunken door mat may make it less convenient for wheelchairs. The laundry and toilet have a brick paved floor.

Kitchen / Laundry Door

The laundry also connects internally to the kitchen through a fire door opening into the kitchen.  Locked on left hand of door at 92cm (3′) height on laundry side.

Downstairs Toilet Door

The outward opening toilet door provides 61cm (2′) clear opening x 196cm (77″) height enabling access by narrow wheelchairs.  The toilet itself is too narrow for wheelchairs to turn, so requires 180 degree transfers.  But has a deep ‘Belfast’ style handwash sink at 76cm (30″) height with lever handle mixer tap and waste.

Sitting Room / Garden Door

A wider (81cm / 32” clear opening), outward opening door leads directly from the Sitting Room to the Garden on the south side of the Cottage.  Just like the west door this has two 2.5cm (1”) “steps” to keep out water.

Kitchen / Patio Door

The outward opening kitchen door (80cm /31″ clear width x 186cm / 73″ height) leading directly from kitchen to patio has the same threshold design as all the other external doors, to provide wheelchair accessibility while keeping out the rain.  This door has a handle at  40cm / 16″ height on the right hand side (from outside), but is bolted at high level (176cm / 69″ on the inside.  A high level external lamp outside this door lights patio and garden.  The switch for this light is just inside the kitchen / patio door, next to the switch for the nearest kitchen ceiling lamp.

Entrance Hall

Inside the west door one enters a small hallway with coat pegs all along the wall on the right above a bench with handy shoe rack underneath.

On the left as you enter the Cottage is the stair to the first floor (upstairs).  Light switches for the stair and hall are just inside the external door on the left at a height of 130cm (4’4”).  There is a double wall bracket light on each side of the hall.  Each lamp has an individual switch for energy saving below the compact fluorescent bulb, as do most lamps in the Cottage.

(A similar arrangement of light switches applies to all doors in the house except bathroom, where a cord pull hangs at arm’s reach directly in front of you as you enter the room.)

Beyond the stair opening is an oak dresser with 3 drawers containing: comprehensive, well organised information on local attractions; board games; and children’s toys respectively.

On top of the dresser is the visitors’ book filled with comments and advice from previous guests.  We find this an invaluable source of information and always read the comments as soon as guests leave so that we can act immediately to rectify any problems noted, before the next guests arrive, later that day.

The space between bench and dresser provides a gangway of 107cm /42” clear width.  There is one opening window.  A double power socket (240V square pin ) is located under the bench.  A dry powder fire extinguisher is located on the left side of the dresser at the foot of the stairs.

The main trip switch cabinet (modern equivalent of the “fuse box”) for the Cottage (and override trip-switch for the Byre) is located above head height at the foot of the stairs.  A slip of paper in the cabinet, details which areas of the house are controlled by which switches.

Broom Cupboard

A walk-in cupboard under the stairs, stocks cleaning and ironing equipment, spare folding chairs, garden games and spare programmable heaters on wheels.  (The cupboard door provides a 57cm / 22.8” clear opening)  The cupboard light switch is in the hall to the left of the cupboard door.

Study / TV Room

To the right of the Hall is the Study or TV Room, which can also be used as a downstairs bedroom, children’s play room if required.  This room is furnished with a leather sofa plus adult and child’s desks with chairs in proportion.  A portable mains powered music CD and tape player is provided. (TV/DVD  player, are shared with the sitting room.  A separate portable mains radio is provided in the master bedroom).  The study contains a WiFI hub providing broadband internet for the whole Cottage.  Six double electrical power sockets (12 total) are provided at high and low level.  There are 2 single wall bracket lamps in the study and a battery operated smoke alarm.

Hooks on the walls allow this room to be used for drying clothes during inclement weather.  There are two opening windows.

The study door provides 63.5cm (251/2”) clear opening.  Like almost all the internal doors to habitable rooms within the cottage, this is a fire resistant door and therefore heavy.  All such internal doors have easy to use lever handles, but are not self-closing.

These doors are also effective sound insulators, minimising sound transmission within the house, when closed.  This effect is increased by sound and fire insulation within internal walls and ceiling voids.   NB. This can make it difficult to hear audible alarms or telephones (mobile phone reception is practically zero within the house anyway).  The occasional intrusive external noise is minimised within the Cottage by high performance double glazing and enhanced insulation within the external walls and roof.

There is normally a minimum of 125cm (50”) clear space between items of furniture in the study.  The room is equipped with a battery powered smoke alarm.  The under-floor central heating in Hall and Study are controlled by the same thermostat and timer located within the Study.

Directions for use of the WiFi are shown under the glass on the desk top in the study.  Additional details about the BT Hub are kept in the BT box behind the study sofa, close to the BT wall sockets.

Sitting / Dining Room

Beyond the hall, in the centre of the Cottage is the Sitting Room, the largest room in the house.  The hall to sitting room door has a clear width of 68cm (27”).  Like hall and study this room has wax polished terracotta flooring, with under floor central heating, but a separate thermostat and timer.  It also has a very efficient wood burning stove and adjacent dry log and kindling store, both located within a traditional inglenook.  The stove is raised on a steel pedestal providing easy access for lighting and refuelling, while seated.  It has a flat top, glazed door and very simple lever controls with comfortable wooden handles.  It is easy to light, but detailed instructions are provided on the adjacent wall.

There are three tilting LED spot lights in the inglenook, switched on the left of the inglenook.  But the main room lighting is provided by 6 ceiling mounted swivelling and tilting LED spot lights to provide bright light where it is needed, but give softer, more relaxing, reflected light elsewhere.  These lamps are individually switched with over-ride switches next to the doors to hall, garden and kitchen.

The long dining table seats up to 8 people comfortably.  4 traditional wooden chairs are provided by the table, but 8 other suitable upright chairs can be found elsewhere in the house if needed.  In the table are 4 drawers containing respectively: table cutlery; first aid and emergency equipment; table clothes; and place mats.

On the south side of the Sitting Room is a seating area with two leather sofas, and orthopaedic easy chair, nesting tables and chess table, plus TV/ DVD player.  Instruction booklets are provided.  4 double power sockets are provided (8 total).

The Sitting Room has 5 opening windows and a 91.5cm (36.5”) clear opening accessible door onto the brick paved garden path.  It also has a 69cm (27.6”) clear opening door into the kitchen reached up a 1 in 20 ramp, tiled in contrasting smaller terracotta tiles, to reduce slipping and provide visual and tactile contrast with the main floor.

There is 198cm (79”) clear head room beneath ceiling beams in the Sitting Room.

A dry powder fire extinguisher is located to the right of the wood burning stove.

Kitchen

The Kitchen has an 89.5cm (35.8”) high stainless steel double sink with integral double draining boards.  Under the sinks is a deep curtained shelf with cleaning equipment.  Under the draining boards are a washing machine and freezer respectively, both front opening.

To the left of the sinks is another good size freezer with side opening door (opens from right to left) at floor level, and an integrated capacious fridge with similar door above.  The highest shelf in the fridge is 147cm (58.8”) from the floor.  Overall height of the fridge & Freezer is 180cm (72”).

Above the right hand draining board is an alcove, at the back of which is the cast iron door to the old bread oven.  At the top of this alcove an open chimney to take smoke from the fire required to heat the bread oven.  The bread oven has not been used for its intended purpose in decades but makes a handy wine cellar.

To the right of the bread oven alcove is a range of 5 shelves reaching up to the ceiling and bearing a diverse range of crockery.  A short wooden step ladder is provided by the waste bin to assist you in reaching items on the top shelf, but for those who like something to hold onto when climbing steps a taller aluminium ladder is provided by the fridge.  Ceiling height is higher than most other rooms in the cottage at 234cm (93”).

Opposite the sink is a kitchen counter 90cm (36”) high, with a deep food storage shelf underneath, equipped with 4 capacious, washable, food storage containers.  There are 4 narrower shelves above the counter.  A little emergency canned food is supplied on the top shelf.  There is a minimum of 110cm (44”) between sinks and counter.  There is a double electric power socket below the counter with fused isolating switch above; and 2 double sockets above the counter to the left of this isolating switch.  To the right of the isolating switch is the switch for the immersion heater which has a tell-tale light incorporated. (This immersion heater should only be needed if the gas boiler fails and is capable of heating the whole house as well as providing hot water).  To the left of the 2 sockets is another switch with a tell-tale light, for the big, but very quiet, chimney top air extractor fan.

To the left of the counter is a dual fuel cooker with cooker hood above.  The cooker hood also incorporates a rather noisier extractor fan with 3 speeds (marked 2, 3 and 6!) and two spot lights; all switched electronically on the leading edge of the hood. (Both extractor fans can be used simultaneously to achieve a real 6 settings)

The 60cm (24”) wide cooker has a four gas burner hob and two capacious fan assisted electric ovens with full width grab handle rails on each and twist controls easily accessible on the front of the cooker.  Left hand controls for hob and right hand for ovens. The top oven door opens downward and the lower oven opens from right to left.  The two ovens share 3 adjustable shelves.  The top oven also has a double element grill, turn central control anticlockwise for left hand grill only and clockwise for both elements, each has 4 settings.  There is a digital clock with the controls on the front of the cooker, whose main oven is fully programmable.

To “automatically” light each gas hob burner push the relevant control knob while turning clockwise.  The gas supply will be automatically cut off if the glass cooker lid is lowered.

NB. Because the gas supply is propane which burns hotter than natural gas, the normal low setting on the gas hob controls (fully clockwise) is too hot for gentle simmering, to achieve gentle simmering it is necessary to turn the control anticlockwise until the flame is almost on the point of going out.

The kitchen has 2 ceiling pendant lamps each switched separately beside the nearest door.  (Note that the switch closest to the kitchen/patio door controls the external patio light) There is a battery Carbon Monoxide alarm fitted to the kitchen ceiling beside a loft hatch.

A Carbon Dioxide fire extinguisher is located by the left hand draining board, and a fire blanket is hung on the patio door to the left of the cooker.

Proposed Downstairs Toilet

It is intended that a new door be opened up between kitchen and boiler room for next year.  This will give access to the propane gas fired boiler and proposed downstairs toilet, which is under construction between guests.  It will also provide more direct access to the parking yard.

Fuse Box

Above the foot of the stairs is the main trip switch cabinet (“fuse box”) for the property including out-houses and Byre.  The cabinet is located above head height at 200cm (80”) above floor level, and has a side hung door opening left to right.  Inside this and just within reach of taller adults is a range of trip switches behind a clear, drop down plastic screen.  The red switch at the extreme left of this row is the master switch for the house.  All switches to the right are subsidiary switches for named circuits.  A slip of paper within the cabinet details which areas of the house are covered by each circuit.  The drop down plastic screen must be closed before shutting the wooden cabinet door.

A dry powder fire extinguisher suitable for electrical fires is located adjacent the foot of the stairs.

Stairs

There  is a single straight flight of waxed oak stairs to the first floor landing, leading up from the left of the hall as you enter the cottage via the west door.

These stairs have a single round section hand rail at 80cm (32”) height, of 4.3cm (1.72”) diameter, on the left as you ascend; and a minimum clear width of 68cm (27”).  There is no door at either top or bottom of the stair, but a 223x157cm  (89”x 62”)landing at the top (disregarding furniture).  Each step has a 20cm (8”) riser, 22cm (8.8”) going, and 72cm (28.8”) width tread.

These stairs form the principal fire escape route from the 1st floor as the casement windows are too small for escape by many adults.  Stairs and 1st floor have slightly enhanced under floor insulation against noise and fire.  The stair well has a smoke alarm incorporating an emergency light.  During daylight it is it by an opening window at 1st floor level, giving views to the north; and at night by a small iron chandelier.

Landing

The landing is lit by the stair window and by a twin lamp wall bracket.  The switch for which is located with the upper stair light switch to the right of the head of the main stairs as you ascend.  The landing contains a large Chinese carved wooden chest filled with spare bedding, a wooden carver style kitchen chair.  All 1st floor rooms open off this landing, from which the attic stair also springs.  The attic stair is a very steep “staggered” stair so is closed off to guests for safety reasons.  The attic is not let to guests, but there is a smoke alarm above the stair well.

A large foam fire extinguisher is located behind the chair between the bedroom doors on the landing.

Toilet / Bathroom

A combined bathroom and toilet is located off the first floor landing.  The door clear width is 61.5cm (24.6”).  Pull cord light switch at arm’s reach directly in front of you as you enter the room.  This operates two wall lamp brackets (double and single) above head height.  The bathroom has a higher (variable) ceiling height than other rooms to facilitate use of the hand held shower in the bath.

The conventional 60cm (24”) high, 145cm (5’ nominal) internal length bath, which has no hand rails, has a mixer tap with integral hand held shower / hair washing attachment, which is also convenient for use with the adjacent large hand basin.  Clear passage width beside the bath is 73cm (29”)

There is a full length shower curtain to screen the bath, but the waxed oak floor is not water proof, so please ensure the curtain hangs inside the bath before use of the shower.

The toilet seat is 43cm (17.2”) high and has only 40cm (16”) clearance to the sides.  The flush has a right handed lever action (facing the toilet), while the hand basin is diagonally in front and to the right when sitting on the toilet.  There is 40cm (16”) clearance between basin and toilet bowl, but the hot tap (closest) is 74cm (29.6” horizontal distance) from the toilet seat.

There is a cupboard under the capacious hand basin [internal dimensions 45x25cm (18”x10”)], containing various useful items including potty and no-slip rubber shower mat.  A much larger under-stair cupboard opposite the bath contains spare duvets.

In case of  emergency the bathroom door lock can be forced gently without excessive strength being required or damage done and easily reinstated.  There is a single opening window, dating from 1720, which is a little draughty, helping to keep the room well aired.  (It is easier to open and close if one rests one hand on the window sill while lifting the lower window handle)

Main Bedroom

The 71cm (28.5”) wide door into the main bedroom scrapes the low ceiling.  There is 180cm (72”) minimum head room under the low ceiling beam in the middle of the room. The floor slopes gently to the west.  The hand made “Super King Size” double bed is 50 cm (20”) high, 200cm (80”) long, and 180cm (72”) wide.  Due to the low ceiling and beam it is unwise to stand on the bed!

Both over stuffed and lightly stuffed feather pillows are provided as standard.  Hypoallergic non feather pillows are available on request.  Sheets and duvet covers are pure cotton.  ‘Autumn’ and ‘summer’ duvets supplied have ribbons at corners to facilitate combining them for added warmth in winter.  Mattress protectors are fitted as standard.  Spare linen and woollen blankets are kept in each bedroom.  Cotton counterpanes are fitted to keep beds dust free.

The bed slides easily on the polished floor if more space is required on one side, giving a maximum transfer space available to one side of 100cm (40”) with 37cm (14.8”) remaining on the other side.  The free manoeuvring space clear of doors and furniture is 135x180cm (54”x72”).

A wardrobe, chest of drawers and two bedside tables are provided.  The room has a smoke alarm, and 5 double wall lamp brackets, plus 2 flexible stalk bedside lamps.  There are 2 opening windows with views south and west.

Small Bedroom

The 63cm (25”) wide door has headroom of 180cm (72”). The twin beds are each 36cm (14.4”) high, by 200cm (80”) long and 85cm (34”) wide.

The room has a wardrobe and small cupboard, but no chest of drawers.  It has a smoke alarm.

The single opening window looks south over the garden.

Cot

2 baby’s cots are available on request.  They come with mattress and mattress cover but no other bedding.  The cots have barred sides to prevent baby falling out.  The smaller cot has one side that can be lowered to reduce back strain, the larger cot meets USA regulations so has both sides fixed.

Garden

There is an enclosed south facing cottage garden; with 2 brick paved seating areas to catch afternoon and morning sun respectively (a third to catch the setting sun and orchard view will be completed for summer 2019), plus 2 lawns linked by brick paved paths between mixed shrub and herbaceous borders, with ornamental and fruit trees, soft fruit and herbs.  Please help yourself to fruit and herbs in season.  A portable “Kadai” barbeque is provided, with charcoal and barbeque cooking tools.

An unfinished 2 storey stone extension provides additional shelter and privacy to the northeast of the garden, but is not accessible to guests.

Orchards and Wild Flower Meadows

The two ancient orchards adjoining the Cottage within the wider Manor Holding grounds, form part of the Wyre Forest Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI).  Both the larger fields are designated as of Archaeological Significance and noted for their diverse wild flora by English Nature. There is a small area of young woodland with a shallow wildlife pond, about 100m north of the cottage.  This is popular with the local deer.

Wyre Forest

To the south and west the grounds are bordered by ancient woodland, part of the Wyre Forest SSSI, and the largest woodland National Nature reserve in the country.  To the north and east several other small holdings make a patchwork of fields within the wider forest.  A network of foot, bridle and cycle paths (including the Abberley and Malvern Hills Geopark Way, Sabrina Way, Mercian Way [Sustrans’ National Cycle Route 45], and several other long distance routes) laces the forest.  These paths vary in quality from broad forest roads to informal animal trails, but the better quality trails link directly to the cottage door.  It is easy to get lost within the forest so guests should take compass and map (supplied) when venturing any distance.  Please note that mobile phones tend not to work in the forest.

Parents should assess for themselves the safety of the innumerable exciting play opportunities available, including exploring, informal play equipment, tree climbing etc and set clear limits for their children.

Additional Information

A welcome pack file containing more useful information in large font and A3 format is provided in the Cottage; containing essential, emergency, useful or merely interesting information relating to the Cottage and it’s environs.  This is supplemented by a comprehensive and catalogued selection of brochures and other data about local attractions and available activities.

There is very poor mobile phone reception in the area of the cottage except at the top of the hill, and no reception within the Cottage.  A landline phone can be provided by arrangement.  Please refer to our booking form or website prices page for prices.

Wireless broadband internet access is available free, but bandwidth is very limited due to the distance to the nearest telephone exchange, and internet coverage can be disrupted for prolonged periods by power fluctuations.

We ask guest to refrain from smoking indoors.

Pets are welcome but must be booked in advance.  Please refer to the booking form or website prices page for prices.  However we ask that pets be discouraged from going upstairs; or chewing or climbing on the furniture.

Dogs must be kept under control at all times in the vicinity of Manor Holding as sheep and wild animals frequently graze within the wider grounds and surrounding fields.

We welcome your feedback, to help us continually improve the service we provide.  If you have any comments or reactions that you feel may be useful or encouraging, please add them to the previous comments within the visitor comment book in the Cottage or write to us at relax@wyreforestcottage.com or by post to Nigel and Penny Dobson-Smyth, 32 Church Street, Hagley, Stourbridge, DY9 0NA, UK.

We hope you have a wonderful time at Manor Holding Cottage.

Yours,

Nigel and Penny Dobson-Smyth

Guest Comments

It was a pleasure to stay at the Byre this week, it was very peaceful and well equipped, so thank you. ... Once again thank you and I hope to return as soon as I am able.
- Steven + Mike
Thank you for a wonderful stay, as usual we love coming for family holidays in your cottage. Everything is so beautiful out here and, as our holiday family traditions include to cook good meals from local ingredients, your well equipped kitchen is always such a pleasure! Hopefully we'll see you again. Fond regards Family MacPherson.
- Family MacPherson
Too short a stay! Lovely, peaceful time. Fire is hot man! :)
- A + M
We've loved our stay here and will definately be back! Wish we were here for longer!
- Heather + James. London
We had such a nice time, your house is really enchanting, and in such a gorgeous location. we arrived home to pouring rain. We had much better weather with you, it had been raining all day here.- always such a bonus to cheat the weather. Thank you once again (By email)
- Clare, Jem and James + Nellie (Labrador)
Oh, it's sweet! How lovely! (Exclaimed on arrival)
- Clare Nicholls
The photos on the website do not do the cottage justice.
- Jon & Maureen
Thank you for an excellent weekend, super relaxing, great house, well equipped and a dog walker's paradise. PS We were lucky enough to spot deer on every walk!
- Jodie, Adrian, Dave and Henry (The Dogs!)
Our dog Trev has particularly appreciated the log fire and garden, although I think we've tired him out with all the walking.
- Kate & Nathan (+Trev the dog)
We have had a lovely 3 night stay at Manor holding Cottage. The tranquility and quaint charm of the place has captured our hearts and we would love to visit again.
- Kate & Nathan (+ Trev the dog)
Best shops were in Ludlow, Bridgnorth + Bewdley - and we even had lunch underwater" thanks to the amazing flood barrier in Bewdley.
- Simon, Abigail, Alice, Sophie + Rafiki (Lab) from Sutton Coldfield,
The walking in the Wyre Forest is great - especially for a walk-positive labrador :)
- Simon, Abigail, Alice, Sophie + Rafiki (Lab) from Sutton Coldfield,
Visited Ludlow, Bridgnorth, Bewdley, Stourport + took a return trip to Kidderminster on the Severn Valley Railway.
- Simon, Abigail, Alice, Sophie + Rafiki (Lab) from Sutton Coldfield,
On the way to the main road we counted about 13 pheasants most days... were they the same ones?
- Simon, Abigail, Alice, Sophie + Rafiki (Lab) from Sutton Coldfield,
We had a really cosy + quiet week in this fabulous cottage. Evenings by the wood-burning stove were really atmospheric.
- Simon, Abigail, Alice, Sophie + Rafiki (Lab)
Fantastic week. The kitchen had everything and more than you would need. We will visit again in the summer to see the garden and woods when the mud has gone. :-)
- Glynis and Pete with Jack (woof)
Fantastic week. The weather was terrible but the cottage kept us nice and warm. 2 Power cuts did not cause much trouble as we just read and talked. Nigel is very helpful and it was nice to know he was around to help if needed. Thank you so much.
- Glynis and Pete with Jack woof
We have spent a lovely weekend in your cottage. Very Peaceful and homely - exactly what we were after! Wish we had more time to enjoy it! Definetely will recomend.
- Isa + Tito + Maria + Jan
We have loved our stay here and will be back in January 2015. A beautiful cottage, so peaceful and homely. Loved the kitchen with everything I needed. Thank you for your hospitality and kindness.
- Tina & Karl
Thank you for a wonderful stay! You were SO accommodating to us. We enjoyed our stay in this pretty, peaceful place so much + we hope to be back one day!
- Jessica, Michaela (4), & Alyssa (1) (Canada)
Thank you for a wonderful stay! You were SO accommodating to us. We enjoyed our stay in this pretty, peaceful place so much + we hope to be back one day!
- Jessica, Michaela (4) & Alyssa (1) (Canada)
The definitioin of tranquility; even with two children under 4! Love the cottage, the area and everything about it. Would love to come back.
- Kia, Aian, Nathanael and Jacob from Hull
Two nights was enough to fall in love with this fabulous cottage. It was also enough to ensure we shall return to the tranquility, the wildlife and the beer from the local brewery.
- Phil and Karen
Fantastic, charismatic cottage. A beautifully loved home. So sad to leave. We both truly enjoyed the respite and quiet tranquility of the surrounding countryside. The pheasants, robins, blackbirds and other wildlife were a joy, and of course the sheep!
- Sarah and Simon
Beautiful cottage, an obvious labour of love. We had a great week despite the couple of days rain. Thank you for your hospitality.
- Helen & Richard
What a lovely cottage in a very peaceful spot - we'd love to return in better weather! The wood burner made us feel very cosy though. Apologies - we've broken one of the tall glasses.
- Angela, Ben, William & Samuel from Bristol
Wish we were staying longer! We have had a great stay. Cottage is so well equipped, comfy, homely and has so much character! We got a bit lost in the woods, as predicted, but was part of the fun of exploring them. Thank you.
- Sam & Ben from Liverpool
Wish we were staying longer! We have had a great stay. Cottage is so well equipped, comfy, homely, and has so much character.
- Sam & Ben, from Liverpool
This has been a truly unforgettable and memorable experience. the silence is deafening and makes you imagine that you are really a long way back in time. The cottage is a work of art. The skill and attention to detail is wonderful. Truly rural England lives on here in this peaceful little haven. Everything I hoped for in a relaxing break. The visiting kitten (feral) was a bonus. Many thanks.
- Lilian + Ted from York
The cottage is a work of art. The skill and attention to detail is wonderful. Truly rural England lives on here in this peaceful little haven
- Lilian & Ted, York
We have had the most marvellous sojourn. You've provided everything we could possibly need for a magical week, even down to fresh flowers, an ice-cream scoop - and a visiting kitten! Thanks so much.
- Sarah, David, Kit & Posy dog
A gem in a wonderful corner of England! Time flies... Au revoir,
- Mick + Lynn + family. Brussels.
Thanks for a relaxing break away from it all! What a fantastic location, nothing but birds and sheep, bliss! The first time we've slept past 9am on a weekend! :) The bats at dusk were lovely to see too.
- Chris, Mark + Jet + Shadow (Our two Labradors). Cannock Staffordshire
Thank you for letting us use your amazing cottage it’s brilliant. We all love it! We are terribly sorry but my Daddy dropped a plate and broke it so SORRY. xxxx. (Drawing of house with tree and smiling birds)
- Love from Grace, George, Andy + Ria
Altogether a wonderful stay. We hope to be back soon.
- Nicky, Jonathan + Mitzpah the dog.
The renovation is so sensitive but the cottage still feels like a home – not a show-house. We made good use of the wood burning stove and really appreciated all the little touches – such as leaving flowers + milk.
- Nicky, Jonathan + Mitzpah the dog.
We had a wonderful short break here. It is a stunning cottage in a brilliant location.
- Nicky, Jonathan + Mitzpah the dog.
Only downside has been the rain, rain, rain!!! But didn’t dampen our spirits or the enjoyment of our visit!
- Jacqui + John
What a privelige to have stayed in a beautifully restored Grade II Listed cottage. We’re full of admiration in the amount of work that’s gone into the place to achieve the level of accommodation on offer.
- Jacqui + John
We will miss this place but take away some very happy memories. Many Thanks,
- Mark and Nat, Max + Layla.
From the moment we arrived it felt like home ( a home only a lottery win could provide on a permanent basis) and we are feeling very sad to leave. The facilities provided were first class and everything we needed is here.
- Mark and Nat, Max + Layla.
We along with our 2 dogs have had the most wonderful time. We would like to thank Nigel and Penny for giving people the opportunity to stay in this fantastic cottage.
- Mark and Nat, Max + Layla.
Thanks for another lovely Christmas at Manor Holding. We were very cozy with the wood burning stove and cooked a great xmas dinner in the new oven (for 11 people! Ed.) All hoping to return before too long.
- Sarah, Nick, Ruben, Farley + Tamas
Flora the Fiesta didn’t like Lumpy Lane, nor the potholes filled with Shropshire rain. At the end of the track was a different story, Manor Cottage in all of its glory, Surrounded by fields and a pretty garden and an old apple orchard, utterly charming. Good luck to the owners, and congratulations For what you’ve achieved with the restoration!
- Sandra, Bill & our dog Rowan.
Thank you for allowing us to bring our 5 dogs to this wonderful cottage. The cottage is well equipped and very comfortable. It is the sort of place we would love to own. Good Luck in the future.
- Sue & Brian, Tara, Gemma, Red, Lady & Goldie.
Thank you for letting us stay in your cottage. It was a very pleasant stay. We loved the cosiness of this cottage. Maybe will return in the future, if that is okay? We also will recommend this cottage to our family and friends. Thanks,
- Maarten, Suzanne, Reuske, Lobke and Diesel, Weert, The Netherlands
LOVE, LOVE, LOVE Cottage and amenities were also greatly appreciated! Thanks!
- The Buzzairds, Mark Rivera, Nicola Ransome.
I think we all were very impressed and would all love to return soon!
- The Buzzairds, Mark Rivera, Nicola Ransome.
Enjoyed the cottage and the north trail greatly! Having such a young one (1yr old) it was very kid friendly and plenty of room in garden for her to run and discover!
- The Buzzairds, Mark Rivera, Nicola Ransome.
Just wish the fruits were in season! The gooseberries and some strawberries found their way into our stomaches! (Sic)
- The Buzzairds, + Mark & Nicola.
We very much enjoyed our stay in this amazing cottage and hill country! The gardens were lovely and I personally feel I could live here!
- The Buzzairds, Mark Rivera, Nicola Ransome.
A very restful week in spite of very wet weather. An ideal spot to relax.
- Philip and Anne, Mendlesham, Suffolk.
Very comfortable cottage in fantastic location. Beautifully planted garden.
- Harvey Family, Havant, Hampshire.
What an impressive labout of love this cottage & buildings are.
- Julie & Graham, Newcastle-upon-Tyne.
This is a lovely cottage, warm, cosy, and quiet. We enjoyed our stay here immensely, and will remember the lovely views we woke up to every morning.
- Suman & Swagata, Lancaster, Lancs.
A lovely setting for a lovely cottage. Excellent array of books and information to help plan many varied days out. We even had snow! And a real cold snap, but this didn’t dampen spirits.
- Peter & Sharon, Bakewell.
This is the best equipped cottage for kitchen gear we have ever stayed in, even beating the Landmark Trust. Though it would be nice if the cooker and sink were in the same room! (We have now moved the cooker as requested, and added a log burning stove in the sitting room inglenook. Ed)
- Hazel & Andrew, Littlehampton.
We and the dogs have enjoyed playing in the charming garden. Thank you,
- Elaine, Rob, Tom + John, Stockport. + Pixie + Magnus the border terriers.
We have had a very good week, both weather –wise and in our enjoyment of this lovely cottage and surrounding area. the book about Kinlet in the upstairs library is fascinating.
- Elaine, Rob, Tom + John, Stockport. + Pixie + Magnus the border terriers.
Thank you for a wonderful relaxing & peaceful stay in your cottage. The week has been magical.
- Jill & Steve. Wimington Kent
Cottage beautifully restored and very comfortable set off by the cottage garden. Many thanks for allowing us to share your little cottage.
- Ken & Ann & Whiskey. Bishops Offley, Staffs
we soon settled in and came to love the antique charm of the place. Thank you.
- Guy and Anne.
We have had a lovely relaxing stay in the cottage.
- Melanie + Alan + Xena
Thank you for a lovely stay in your lovely cottage! Amazing! It was a pleasure to have a cottage that is so dog friendly. I will recommend it to friends back home! Many thanks.
- Eve, Paul, Ben & Sam.
A lovely warm cottage in an amazing situation – couldn’t fault the facilities.
- Jane, Steve, Lucy + Martha.
Shame to have to leave it behind and head back to the rat-race.
- John, Sheryl, Jake + Natalie
Lovely old house – needs an Aga/Rayburn and a log burner to make it really cosy when it’s cold outside – our winter was just arriving as we got here. (Log burning stove now installed and oven upgraded. Ed)
- John, Sheryl, Jake + Natalie
Felt privileged to have stayed in such an interesting house in a fantastic location. Nice to see a copy of the Brunskill book on timber framing. Many thanks for a memorable stay.
- Suzanne and Barry.
We moved in and felt very much at home, lovely property and enjoyed our forest walks, hope to come back.
- Nellie and Hans.
I think that the work that has been done on the cottage shows great sensitivity to the history of the building. Thank you for allowing us to share your super property for a little while.
- Patrick
Thanks for a very peaceful, relaxing holiday. The cottage is immediately homely with a feelgood factor. We are so relieved that our first holiday in 4 1/2 years turned out to be in a place we would want to return to!
- Trevor and Diane (and Grace of course!)
Thanks for letting us stay in your gorgeous cottage. We had a fab holiday
- Jason, Louise, Niamh, Gripper & Gypsy.
We have all loved it. It is tranquillity base. We will return.
- Micheal, Simm, Heather and Valentine
Our fifth holiday here in this wonderful cottage and surroundings. Here, the intersection of the timeless moment Is England and nowhere. Never and always (TS Eliot: Little Gidding)
- Philip and Anne
We have all relaxed and the two children (4 and 2) have loved the outdoors
- Robert, Anna, Charlotte and Freya
We have really enjoyed our stay in the cottage and have loved the setting its in, including the local wildlife (badgers in the garden, deer in the orchards and forest, woodpecker and red fox etc)
- Robert, Anna, Charlotte and Freya
Have nothing to complain about, everything worked perfectly and was all we needed.
- Joan, Bob, Vickie, Sarah and dogs Ember and Merlin
Loved watching the wildlife and birds, was upset not to see the badgers though.
- Joan, Bob, Vickie, Sarah and dogs Ember and Merlin
We have really enjoyed our break, cottage was lovely
- Joan, Bob, Vickie, Sarah and dogs Ember and Merlin
Thoroughly enjoyed our stay, lovely cottage, thoughtfully provided, good to know it has been rescued and restored sympathetically. Wildlife in garden a great bonus. We hope to be back.
- Tony and Elaine
It is so peaceful here, just the sound of the birds and animals to wake you up in the morning, and no light pollution, Its my husbands birthday today and I could not think of a more stunning location to spend it. Thank you.
- Karen and Ken
I love the quirky nature of the cottage and what wonderful wildlife, just this morning we watched a spotted woodpecker in the woodpile, and what beautiful orchards. Its so good to see the old varieties of apples, its a shame there are not many left in this country anymore.
- Karen and Ken
What a beautiful cottage, in idyllic surroundings. It is heaven here!
- Karen and Ken
The holly bushes are in bloom and beautiful. In the field ahead of the lonely building we found an apple tree with an abundance of mistletoe. It was lovely seeing the real deal. Thank you for allowing us to share this special piece of countryside
- Nanette and David
We were pleased to meet with Baby, the hand reared sheep who wanders down the lane like a pet dog – belongs to the neighbour.
- Nanette and David
Our last visit was January 05 – even more beautiful. What excitement we had when we woke up to see a stag under the apple tree outside the front door
- Nanette and David
We have had a fantastic time. You have obviously tried to make this a home from home and it has really worked. We arrived on the 1st night at 8pm and we all immediately felt cosy and relaxed. Jovi (3 1/2) went into every room and announced, ’This is nice!’ Angelique (1 ½) also had a fabulous time shrieking to her heart’s content. Well done you have thought of everything, and we definitely want to visit again very soon. (PS) We too have stayed in many a holiday cottage and we love this one.
- Steve, Lara, Jovi and Angelique
We enjoyed our week in the cottage which has a unique charm.
- Carl, Fiona, Olivia and Zak
An enjoyable visit – setting and cottage delightful
- Sue and Peter
We love this cottage. As two old locals returning from the smoke we really felt miles from anywhere.
- Sarah, Nick, Ruben, Farley and Tamas.
Thanks for a peaceful rest.
- Hazel
We enjoyed our stay here. The quirky cottage is lovely,the kitchen is well equipped
- Dawn, David, William, Holly
We enjoyed our stay – mostly every day sunny. Spent a lot of time relaxing in the garden listening to the birds and sheep.
- Sue and Dave + Cheyenne and Tessie
We enjoyed our stay here and were comfortable in the cottage. We would like to know more of the history of the restoration of the property Excellent selection of books.
- Geoffrey and Margaret
Had another lovely week here despite the weather. However we have one major complaint, we have got to go back to reality! Thanks for everything.
- Liz & Tony
A most enjoyable stay in the cottage We would love to know more about its history and plans for the future, but loved the oak doors and attention to detail on the handles
- Carol and Bob
Never seen such a well organised drawer with information
- Verkuyl family (Holland)
We love the cottage and found it to be very comfortable and well equipped We really appreciated the well organised & comprehensive information on the cottage and surrounding area. The garden and surrounding countryside are absolutely lovely.
- Angela, Pete & Matthew
We have had a fantastic time, the cottage is absolutely lovely, really comfortable The garden is fab, I love the different sections, one for me to read, one for the girls to play in. All in all we have had a lovely holiday and are sorry to be going back to reality. rested, relaxed and restored, exactly what we needed. Thank you so much for the use of your well equipped, comfortable cottage We would love to come again.
- Keith, Fiona, Lucy and Sophie
What a haven of peace and quiet!...We thought the garden was magic and enjoyed desserts of blackberries, apples and plums.
- Alan & Liz
We had some wonderful walking days in the forest which our dog loved even more than us. The main problem we found was the entourage of baby pheasants showing us the way home everytime we ventured out in the car.
- Kim and Linda, and Leighton
Great tree house – my nephew got to level three. So many walks – didn’t do nearly enough. So many pubs – only got as far as Button Oak Inn – well cooked generous servings, Bands and Stowford Cider
- Liz and Ken; Arnie and Harry
Two brilliant meals at the Fighting Cocks in Stottesdon and the Plough in Far Forest on the way home last night. Lovely walk through forest to Buttonoak, saw field full of cowslips.
- Pam, Royston, Chris and Robyn
Lovely secluded location well situated for touring Shropshire, Herefordshire, Worcestershire and the Marshes. We also had an airy walk over Titersford Clee Hill from Cleeton St Mary. Several runs through the forest and back over the fields from Buttonbridge have helped to maintain fitness! Meal out at the Plough was good value for money, although the pseudo-themed interior rather spoiled the anticipation evoked by the authentic exterior.
- Dave, Lynn and Nero the geriatric dog
Bewdley is a lovely little town with everything. We are a family with a sweet tooth, so also appreciated the sweet shop. Two of us had a great meal at the Royal Forester a restaurant pub so a bet more expensive but worth it. You would probably need to book a table or go early. Ludlow is beautiful. Stourport is undergoing regeneration and should be great in a few years time. Enjoyed a ride on the Severn Valley Railway. Forest walks are wonderful, if a bit scary at dusk!
- David and Anne with Ruffles the dog
Loved the setting its in, including the local wildlife (badgers in the garden, deer in the orchards and forest, woodpecker and red fox etc) We have all relaxed and the two children have loved the outdoors
- Robert, Anna, Charlotte and Freya
Loved watching the wildlife and birds, was upset not to see the badgers though.
- Joan, Bob, Vickie, Sarah and dogs Ember and Merlin
If you want fishing (coarse) try Wellfield Pools Also Hayes Farm(&) ShatterfordVery big Carp, Catfish, Sturgeon in here (up to 50lbs)
- Bob
what wonderful wildlife, just this morning we watched a spotted woodpecker in the woodpile, and what beautiful orchards. Its so good to see the old varieties of apples, it’s a shame there are not many left in this country anymore. It is so peaceful here, just the sound of the birds and animals to wake you up in the morning, and no light pollution, Thank you.
- Karen and Ken
What excitement we had when we woke up to see a stag under the apple tree outside the front door We were pleased to meet with Baby, the hand reared sheep who wanders down the lane like a pet dog – belongs to the neighbour. The holly bushes are in bloom and beautiful. In the field ahead of the lonely building we found an apple tree with an abundance of mistletoe. It was lovely seeing the real deal. Thank you for allowing us to share this special piece of countryside
- Nanette and David
Saw plenty of wildlife along sleepy hollow to the left
- Carl, Fiona, Olivia and Zak
As two old locals returning from the smoke we really felt miles from anywhere.
- Sarah and Nick
We love the area, especially for biking. The weather was glorious nearly all week which enabled us to try lots of bike routes.
- Dawn, David, William, Holly
We were delighted by the walks in the forest and the profusion of wild plants and birds. We would like to know more of the history of the restoration of the propertyExcellent selection of books.
- Geoffrey and Margaret
We enjoyed desserts of blackberries, apples and plums.
- Alan & Liz
Sophie (11yrs) was thrilled to see a stag in the woods, it made her holiday.
- Keith, Fiona, Lucy and Sophie
We enjoyed desserts of blackberries, apples and plums.
- Alan & Liz
Its been great being able to access the forest so easily. Ted the dog has appreciated the walks and freedom!
- Julie, Pat and Ted the dog.
We had a lovely week at Manor Holding! Few lovely sunny days at the back garden just enjoying ourselves. Really impressed with Ludlow medieval town & Bewdley. Went to Wyre Forest visitor centre and to the very close and lovely Rays Farm. Thank you guys! Everything was great!
- Sean, Vini, Bobby Rae + Tim the dog
We had a lovely week at Manor Holding! Few sunny days at the back garden just enjoying ourselves. Really impressed with Ludlow medieval town & Bewdley. Went to the Wyre Forest visitor centre and the very close and lovely Ray's Farm. Thank you Guys! Everything was great!
- Sean, Vini, BobbyRae + Tim the dog
We enjoyed the riding at Bagginswood and the great walks from the cottage door. The snowdrops everywhere were magical. We also enjoyed lunch in Cleobury Mortimer + tea in Bewdley. Gobbetts nursery is well worth a visit (if you can find it ...) Altogether a wonderful stay. We hope to be back soon.
- Nicky, Jonathan + Mitzpah the dog
We had the most wonderful short break here. It is a stunning cottage in a brilliant location. The renovation is so sensitive, but the cottage still feels like a home - not a show-house. We have made good use of the wood burning stove and realy appreciated all the little touches - such as leaving us flowers and milk.
- Nicky, Jonathan + Mitzpah the dog
What a privalege to have stayed in a beautifully restored Grade II Listed cottage. We're full of admiration in the amount of work that's gone into the place to achieve the level of accommodation on offer. We enjoyed a lovely meal at the Eagle and Serpent in Kinlet, the staff being welcoming and hospitable. Only downside has been the rain, rain, rain!!! but didn't dampen our spirits or the enjoyment of our visit!
- Jacqui + John
What can we say that hasn't already been said? We along with our 2 dogs have had the most wonderful time. We would like the thank Nigel and Penny for giving people the opportunity to stay in this fantastic cottage. From the moment we arrived it felt like home (a home only a lottery win could provide on a permanent basis) and we are feeling very sad to leave. The facilities provided were first class and everything we needed is here. We will miss this place but take away some very happy memories. Many Thanks.
- Mark and Nat, Max + Layla
A lovely setting for a lovely cottage, our 2 young daughters particularly liked the 'lumpy' journey to and from every day as well as exploring the woods and lanes.
- Robert & Sharon, Bakewell
This is the best equipped cottage for kitchen gear we have ever stayed in, even beating the Landmark Trust. Though it would be nice if the cooker and sink were in the same room! (We have now upgraded the cooker to fan assisted dual fuel and put it in the same room as the sink. Ed)
- Hazel & Andrew, Littlehampton
We've had another lovely stay. Thank you for having us.
- Nick, Sarah, & family
Thanks for letting us stay in your gorgeous cottage. We had a fab holiday.
- Jason, Louise, Niamh, Gripper & Gypsy.
Thanks for a lovely visit to Shropshire. Great surroundings. Cottage nice and well equipped.
- Dave& Pat

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