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Force Mill Barn
Force Mill barn is one of a group of buildings collectively known as Force Mill, which sit by the Grizedale Beck between Coniston Water and Windermere, on the southern edge of the Grizedale Forest and a mile from the village of Satterthwaite in the heart of the Lake District National Park. As the name implies, it is here that a gentle beck turns into a powerful force, with a cascading waterfall, where in the past it would have been harnessed to drive the mill.
One of two conversions created from a huge bank built barn, Force Mill Barn shares its location with the original mill house and a further private cottage.
You enter into a small hallway, off which is the spacious double bedroom, with a huge king sized bed and two easy chairs to enjoy reading or take in the south facing view. Adjacent is the bathroom with bath, basin and WC and, down a flight of stairs, you have a bright twin bedroom (available on request) and a shower room.
Back to the hall and up the stairs to the open plan living space with a high pitched ceiling.
For easy living you have a kitchen to one end where you can rustle up your favorite Jamie dish, a central dining table to load with good food, eat and talk and, finally, the sitting area with big plump sofas to curl up on, relax, read a book or watch the ultra mod flat screen TV.
I really like this barn, the layout contemporary, the spaces working well, conducive for an easy relaxed holiday, all of which I am sure will please those that stay.
Force Mill lies pretty much equidistant between Coniston Water to the west and Lake Windermere to the east, where the Rusland Valley joins the southern borders of the Grizedale Forest, a vast area of ancient woodland and commercial plantation under the care of the Forestry Commission.
The forest chiefs have made huge creative efforts in conservation and diversity turning this mighty woodland into a fantastic recreational area and open air art gallery, where hundreds of sculptural pieces can be found in and around the forest, along with many way marked tracks and trails offering various levels of effort and distance, including provision for disabled visitors with the introduction of the tarmaced “Ridding Wood Trail”.
At the heart of the forest is the visitor centre. This is the best place to start, picking up maps and information to get the most from your day in the woodland. There is an information desk, shop, cafe, exhibition rooms, galleries, bike hire and a children’s play area. A well defined map will show the many trails for both walking and mountain bikes.
The big hike is to follow the Silurian Way. Nine and a half miles long the walk takes you through both sides of the valley, taking in deep forest glades and climbing to higher view points. On route you will see most of the sculptures and is estimated to take about five hours, so a packed lunch is a good idea. Many trails are open to mountain bikes where you can either bring your own or hire cycles from Grizedale Mountain Bikes.
For those who require a bit more adventure then you must 'Go Ape'. Well established as a firm favourite, ‘Go Ape’ is aerial trekking high above the forest floor where you swing through the trees, cross rope bridges and scramble nets, ending on a huge wind in your face zip wire ride.
The nearest village is Satterthwaite, about a mile up the road on the way to the Grizedale centre. A sleepy little place there is a decent pub, The Eagles Head, serving good beer, pub grub and hosting the occasional festival and live music events.
Carry on past the Visitor centre over fell, and you come to little village of Hawkshead. Timber framed buildings make up this popular village with four good pubs and a host of souvenir shops of which the Hawkshead relish company is well worth a visit.
East lies Coniston Water. Perhaps the more people friendly of the big lakes in the south it is overshadowed by the mighty Old man Of Coniston. At the boating centre you can hire row, sail and motor powered boats, or take a trip on a steamer or launch. There is plenty of open shoreline where you can fish, swim or simply enjoy a picnic on a grassy bank.
Between the forest and the lake you can fill your days with plenty of walking and activities,however the whole of the National Park is within easy reach so ther will never be a dull moment, never a new view to see and all with the perfect cottage to return home to after your days exploration.
A lovely barn cottage with everything and more supplied. It's been a real treat and enjoyable stay. I can definitely recommend it.
Sharon Womersley - February 2015
Local Areas Of InterestConiston Village
L a k e l a n d E x t r a s - U T i m e
Holidays are are all about relaxing and reviving along with having fun. It should also be about your time, time for yourself, a little self indulgence. Adding some of these extras will enhance your holiday experience and give you that much deserved U Time.
My Personal Sanctuary
MPS is a luxurious and truly indulgent beauty therapy service delivering 5 star quality organic treatments carried out in the comfort of your cottage. Your treatments are carried out by carefully selected therapists, who ensure you are enveloped in calmness, serenity and relaxation from the moment you embark on your treatment journey. It’s the perfect way to unwind and enhance your stay and even better, when you book one of our lake district cottages you will recieve a 10% reduction from MPS on your chosen treatment.
Home Cooked Meals
A delicious home cooked meal delivered to you door will give you even more time to yourself. We have found two companies that offer a tasty selection, Lucy's of Ambleside, and in the north Lakes, Choice Catering run by Debbie Bainbridge.