Late Bookings For February Half Term 2013

1st February 2013 · No Comments

As a result of an unusual mid-week booking taken by our agency, the weekends either end of the February half term are still available.

In previous years, we’ve had a few enquiries about short breaks across half term but have always had to turn them down as the whole week would be booked.

If you would like a 2 night stay from Friday 15th February 2013 or from Friday 22nd February 2013 the price is £300.

A 3 night stay for the same dates will be £350.

Mid-February can be spectacular in the Peak District – enjoy long quiet walks in crisp winter sunshine and return to the lovely warmth of the Barn and a welcoming log fire.

Call us now on 01298 687006 to book.



A Trip to Churnet Valley Railway

30th January 2013 · No Comments

Just fifteen minutes from the Barn at Ivy House Farm is the Churnet Valley Railway, offering a 10.5 mile steam-powered journey through Staffordshire’s hidden valley.

This is a lovely outing for both old and young alike, but beware questions from the children that may make any adults feel truly ancient – for example: What’s that? – pointing at the vintage, rotary dial telephone!

We were fortunate to have been given a family ticket as a prize for a colouring competition and set off to Cheddleton, somewhat sceptical about whether our 12-year old gadget loving son and 9-year old daughter would enjoy a steam train.

Churnet Valley Railway

Having parked the car, we enjoyed a lovely cup of coffee at the immaculately kept station, only just about managing to resist the delicious looking home-made cakes. We then set off on our journey through countryside that is barely visible by any means other than the train.

The steam train ambled along through Consall, along the canal, past the lime kilns and onto Kingsley and Froghall station. Had we had more time, we could have left the train at any of the stations and enjoyed more of the countryside, flint mines and possibly lunch at the Black Lion pub, but on this occasion, we stayed on the train there and back.

We all (children included) loved our trip into yesteryear and it prompted many questions about steam power from the children and brought back many memories for the grownups.

Highlights of the trip: getting really close to the steam engine, watching it being loaded with coal, and finally the lovely volunteer staff who played their roles –ticket collector, station manager etc – with true authenticity.

The Big Thaw

29th January 2013 · No Comments

Thankfully the snow has finally disappeared and life in the Peak district can return to normal.

School Lane is no longer a bobsleigh run and the hens can safely traverse their pen from the coop to the trampoline.

Before the big melt yesterday, we had a huge dump of snow on Friday night and so a new improved snowman had to built.

I present the snow punk:

Snow Punk

We were particularly proud of the icicle walking stick and the fabulous icicle hair.

Hopefully that will be the last snowman of the winter.


First Peak District Snow of 2013

14th January 2013 · No Comments

Having been banging on to clients for ages about keeping their blogs up to date, I am embarassed to notice that the last update on this blog was New Year 2012!

Must do better this year…

So we’re two weeks into 2013 and the first snow of this winter has hit the Peak District in a rather underwhelming and yet (as usual), disruptive manner.

I should at this point thank the Staffordshire Moorlands Council gritting teams for their sterling work in keeping our roads clear and safe. This is in stark contrast to Derbyshire County Council, who are frankly appalling at keeping their roads clear – you only have to drive from here to Hartington, across the county border to see what I mean!

With the snow comes the inevitable school closures and therefore the opportunity for much fun with snowball fights, sledging and snowman building.

Oscar has outdone himself this year with a grotesque creation on the lawn, pictured below.

Snowman 2013

Luckily he has faced this monstrosity away from approaching visitors and guests. Instead the gruesome visage is aimed squarely at my office… thanks Osc!

With that, may I wish you all a happy and prosperous 2013 and of course, if you’re looking for a Peak District break this year, be sure to give us a call.


Happy New Year 2012

1st January 2012 · No Comments

Happy New Year to all our past and future guests.

2011 was a very good year for occupancy in the Barn and we hope 2012 will be even better – we should have some great new upgrades for the Barn during 2012 and all will be revealed here in due course.