|Minimum Stay||3 - 7 nights|
Black Dog House is a lovely place to unwind, relax and enjoy. The house and the surrounding countryside have something to offer all ages and interests. It's grand for couples, groups of friends and families, with flexible accommodation and every comfort provided. The house is actually two19th Century stone-built terraced cottages, joined together to provide a damn fine place to stay over 3 floors, and has been fully refurbished - I should know, i was in there grappling the RSJ's through the bedroom window! There is plenty of space for everyone to do their own thing indoors, whilst the front garden is good for breakfast, and the rear yard is a place for evening drinks or a BBQ. The set-up can be seen quite easily from the pictures, but essentially it's a walk in to the dining room area with a wood burner, then through to a large sitting room with an open fire. the kitchen is off this will a large range of 'stuff' to get cooking with. Out the back there is a small office area with table and computer point with a door to the back yard. A jump over the wall and you're in the fields! Upstairs there are two doubles, one of which has an en-suite, a twin bedded room and a bathroom. On the top floor there is a big room (ideal for locking away children...) with a large combination of sleeping arrangments available. The location itself is hard to beat, with breathtaking moorland, woods, mountains, rivers, SERIOUS waterfalls and charming small towns. If you visit once, you'll likely want to come back for more ....
Check our own website for more at www.blackdoghouse.info
3 Star self-catering award through Torism England: You can also see us listed on the Tourism England (Durham) website for our three stars; just copy and paste into your browser:
Looking to push that up to four stars this year, not that there is any bias involved!
Who has stayed: Since starting two years ago, we have had a huge variety of groups stay, many of which have taken the trouble to give Black Dog House good reviews. It'd be best to read their words below, but in summary I would say we can successfuly cater for most peoples needs, so do get in contact if there is anything that you'd like clarifying.
I have been a landlord for over 25 years and have used that experience to hopefully provide a good holiday house for any guests to enjoy and feel that most things have been thought about and taken care of; I hope like others, that you do to!
Martin Grixoni purchased this house in 1998
I took the house over from my sister who had lived there with her family for nine years. We then spend about 18 months completely renovating the house and converting the loft space with a view to turning it into the holiday house it now has been for the past five years.
Being in the middle of the North Pennines, which is one of the most beautiful and wild parts of the country is a complete joy; the fact that it is not overful full of tourists is in my view a bonus. There are a selection of mountains just up the valley (The Dodd, Flinty Fell, Killhope Law, Dead Stones and Midllehope Moor) and some quite glorious waterfalls in the area. The two joined cottages gives a very good flexibility of accommodation, and the large attic room to throw children into seems to work very well; a brilliant and large play area with plenty of room!
Thank you we had a lovely time and the house is very well equipped. Our family ranged from 3 years old to 75 years but we all enjoyed it... something for everyone!
We stayed here to celebrate my partner's birthday in November. There was a large group of 10 adults and the cottage was perfect. Communication with the owner Martin was terrific beforehand, and the housekeeper kept in touch on the day to offer to meet us on arrival.
The cottage is spacious, welcoming, warm, clean, and has everything you'll need for your stay.
The four bedrooms are comfortable, and we even had four adults comfortably sharing the attic room which has two large double beds.
The surrounding area is beautiful, we had plenty of hill walks to choose from, as well as the Weardale Way being right on the doorstep.
It was nice and snowy when we were there, and the open fire in the living area was perfect for keeping us all toasty warm when getting back from a day in the hills.
The kitchen area is modern and every need is well catered for.
I'd like to come back again in the summer to venture further into the Pennine hills, and this would be a perfect base.
Highly recommended ;)
Lovely property, plenty of space, nothing that hasn't been thought of, pity it was a rainy weekend but loads of games to play.....nice Sunday lunch at local pub....would definitely visit again
The property is set in a beautiful area and was ideal for our family for the weekend. My only criticism is the front door lock which was a bit tricky, not too good when it's pouring with rain!! Apart from that we had a great stay and I would recommend it to anyone.
We are an extended family of 7 consisting of 3 seniors 2 adults & 2 teenagers. We read the reviews & were aware of the accessibility issues prior to booking relating to the stairs. Although a downstairs wc would have been beneficial to the seniors there was nothing else lacking in the property. The kitchen is compact but well stocked, there was nothing we needed that wasn't provided. The lounge seating is a little restrictive for 7 to 8 adults comfort wise if we had all wished to watch Tv but the weather was good & we were not in much for it to worry us. The bedrooms are spacious & the beds warm & comfortable. Lots to do in the County but would recommend a car unless you are used to walking & public transport. We really enjoyed our stay. We were late arriving but Clare was welcoming & happy to discuss places to go etc. The food in the Hare & Hounds was varied reasonably priced & very good.
We had a fab time in this lovely house and hope to be able to visit again soon. It's in such a beautiful place and the house itself is extremely well equipped and comfortable. The beer at the pub is extremely good too!
Linda was really kind and welcoming, and the house was beautifully clean.
Very good weekend spent here with partner ,sons, daughter in law and 3grandchildren(5,5 &3). Very clean,well-maintained and plenty to keep the kids happy!
Westgate lies within the Wear Valley which is part of the Pennines designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty; perfect for mountain biking, bird watching, riding, painting, photography and even skiing. There are lots of things to see locally - museums, mines, castles, gardens, railways, historic cities, Hadrian’s Wall 30 minutes to the north and the spectacular High Force Falls 30 minutes to the south. Only 15 miles further up the Pennines is the market town of Alston, sitting 1300 feet above sea level, and the starting point for the South Tyne Railway. The market towns of Barnard Castle, Hexham (with its racecourse and Abbey), Newcastle and Durham are all within 30 miles. The village itself has a riverside pub and small shop, playground and public tennis court, The surrounding area is renowned for its wildlife and Slitt Wood with its burbling and gushing beck (a 5 minute walk from the house) is a Site of Special Scientific Interest and bloomin lovely to walk up through. The brooding Hamsterley Forest is 20 minutes by car and is perfect for walks, biking and picnics.
Other Activities: canoeing, orienteering,
Golf: 6 Golf courses within an hours drive, both 9 and 18 hole. visit a golf website for details:
There's even left some clubs to borrow in the house!
Ski: It was on ski Sunday for goodness sake, and you can't get much better than that!
It is called Swinhope Moor (01388 527527; skiweardale.co.uk), which began in 1963 and is run by the Weardale Ski Club, comprising 14 volunteers. These include a fireman who works at the club in his spare time and a retired mechanic. They're up there in the summer cutting the rushes, and in the winter manning the two button lifts and the piste basher. There are seven pisted runs, off-piste slopes and a gully with jumps and ledges. They were awarded the 'Recreational Club of the Year Award' by Snow Sport England at an awards ceremony last month.
I have also skied up on the county border with Northumberland. Minus 3, purple wax, and the skis and wax, plus boots are all available in the loft (size 10 large). 2 sets of everything. Snow reports available at:
http://www.skiweardale.com/Snow%20Reports.html plus http://www.snow-forecast.com/resorts/Swinhope/6day/mid and a blog spot at skiweardale.blogspot.com
Have a look at the pub opposite; they do great food and it only takes 30 seconds to walk there!
The arboretum to visit is in Durham: http://www.eastdurham.ac.uk/1419/view_page.php?section=5&category=19&page=53
Saturday afternoon arrivals unless by prior arrangement. Minimum 3 night price 65% of weekly GBP rate.
Last minute short breaks bookable within one week of the start date. Extra nights are charged pro rata of the weekly rental. Discounts available if a lower number of people are staying - please ask.
Pets considered and only permitted with well-behaved owners!
* Approximate monthly price. Actual pricing will depend on the days of the month you stay.