Response on behalf of the owner; Thank you for your review and we're sorry that you didn't enjoy your stay with us at The Bothy. We pride ourselves in providing a first class service to all who visit us and take great satisfaction in ensuring that our guests enjoy all that our property and the surrounding area can offer. We feel that all our past reviews have reflected the high standards we aim for, so we hope you understand that to receive such a dramatically low score is obviously of great concern to us.
As with all remote country properties of this nature built in the 1800's, the buildings are grouped around a local service, usually a water supply, and we are no different. Churnsike Lodge, our residence, is located 40m from the Bothy and my Mother, who resides on the first floor of the adjacent stable conversion has her front door located 25m from the Bothy. We believe that the distance between each of the properties, the dividing courtyard walls and the opposing orientation of entrances should provide adequate seclusion. We can only apologise if you felt that you could not relax as we do try to be as unobtrusive as possible when we have guests. With regards to the comment on the door, we understand your concerns here and have taken steps to remedy this as it was something we had not considered. Thank you for alerting us to this.
Regarding the thermostat, during the winter, and especially with the cold one we have experienced this year, we endeavour to keep our guests warm throughout their stay by providing 24hr heating through our biomass system. Whilst the temperature is set to a constant of 23 degrees, it may be easily altered via a thermostat. The thermostat located on the wall in the living room of the Bothy is easily adjustable via two buttons, as are the thermostatic radiator valves, all of which can be adjusted to regulate the temperature to personal preferences.
Regarding dogs, we do respectfully ask that dogs are kept on a lead whilst on the property as we have dogs ourselves and also a number of free range hens. In the past we have had uncontrolled dogs worry the hens which we feel is unfair to subject them to easily preventable stress. It's a mere 30m to the property entrance whereupon dogs can be let off to run as they please throughout the forest. It is stated within the agents booking conditions that pets are not allowed upstairs and on furniture, and these are agreed prior to booking. We hope you may understand that permitting pets upstairs is not conducive in maintaining a clean environment for the enjoyment of further guests, after all this is a holiday property and as not all guests will be dog owners we have to cater for all.
You will have noticed the foundations are already in place to build a stone wall to fully enclose the courtyard which will be gated, however, as you can appreciate for a small family business such as ourselves, these things take time and money, but we are fully committed to continually improving the facilities. In regard to knocking down a wall to provide a garden, we feel that this would impinge upon the historical character of the property, of which we are keen to preserve, and there isn’t any junk there only the neatly stacked original 1850s flagstones.
One of the unique attractions of our location is the vastness that Northumberland, and especially the Kielder Forest, has to offer. Throughout the forest there are myriad forest roads and tracks which cross through a variety of environments including open moorland, clear-fell and both ancient and commercial forest providing far reaching views from elevations and the opportunity to witness the ruggedness of the truly wild Northumberland. We provide two ordnance survey maps, detailing both Kielder Forest and the countryside surrounding Hadrian’s Wall, alongside numerous guides in the Bothy, which upon examination would act as a guide as to where the roads and tracks take you and how to best enjoy the surroundings of this unique area. We would like to note that the area is one of great renown throughout the country, and may be researched prior to booking via our booking page, personal website and through the Northumberland National Parks and Visit Kielder websites.
Whilst we appreciate that 10 miles may appear to be a great distance from the Bothy to the nearest village, we do make it very clear in the property description that we are in a very remote location. Furthermore, in an effort to inform our guests, there is a map included on our cottages.com webpage for guests to see exactly where we are. Google Maps, for the uninitiated, is also a great source of information when used in conjunction with local travel guides, and provides a facility whereby the entire length of the road can be traversed in a virtual environment.
Upon greeting all our guests we always ask that they make us aware of any issues that may have that might have a negative impact upon the enjoyment of their stay and we do try to deal with them immediately. As such, we were greatly saddened that you could not approach us and only able to stay for such a very short amount of time. As you arrived in the evening at dusk and left the following morning at daybreak we feel that had you stayed with us longer then you may have been able to experience some of the surroundings you were so dissatisfied with.
In the short time we have been operating, the reviews we received have on the whole have been very encouraging and complimentary with the overall theme being that the remote open ruggedness has been ideal for our prior guests to undertake walking, many with their dogs. We can only apologise that in your short stay you may not have fully experienced the local area, and we remain devoted to consistently providing a high standard of accommodation.