Biddenden, Nr Tenterden
Step back in time through the doors of this Grade II listed Kentish Weald home. A slice of Kent's history brought to life with modern comforts in a timeless setting. Charming and cosy, Catslide Cottage, named after the sloping roof that slides from the eaves bedrooms down to ground level, is a comfortable base from which to explore.
Set on Biddenden's ancient main street, Catslide cottage was once a medieval Kentish 'Hall House' where the farmer and his livestock happily cohabited. The original dwelling has been divided into two homes with Catslide Cottage now a cosy four-bedroom cottage with wonky floors and low beams. There is a huge Inglenook fireplace with a log burner, which is very welcoming after a day out visiting local attractions, of which there are many, or perhaps after striding out on one of the numerous walks from the village through the beautiful Kent countryside. Think adventurous days out and cosy nights in. The cottage has a small courtyard garden that can be entered directly from the kitchen door.
The village offers several places to eat, drink and watch the world go by. The Michelin-starred fine dining restaurant, The West House (book early!) is on your doorstep, but should you want something more casual, there is a village pub, café, Chinese take-away and a corner shop just along the cobbled high street. Larger supermarkets can be found a few miles away.
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Catslide Cottage: sleeps 8 guests (max 6 adults) in a semi-detached two storey 'Catslide' cottage. 4 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms. Pretty courtyard garden, off road parking and walking distance from the high street with beautiful restaurants and not forgetting nearby Biddenden Vineyard.
Enter into the rear of the property.
Kitchen is snug yet perfectly equipped and includes an electric oven, hob, dishwasher, butler sink and under counter fridge.
Facilities include a L'Or Barista coffee machine, microwave, toaster, kettle. Fully stocked with glassware and crockery for 8 guests - some items in the lounge. The garden utility hut houses the freezer and washing machine plus airer and cleaning supplies.
The living space is quirky and heavily beamed with an inglenook fireplace with log burner, a mix of contemporary and antique furnishing. Sofa and chair seating for 8. Smart screen TV. Dining area to seat 8 guests.
Bedroom 1 - (sleeps 2) double bed, wardrobe, en suite shower room.
Bedroom 2 - (sleeps 2) twin beds, hanging space, chest of drawers.
Family bathroom with bath, sink and WC.
The top floor offers two eaves rooms.
Bedroom 3 - (sleeps 2) double bed, hanging space, chest of drawers.
Bedroom 4 - (sleeps 2) double bed, hanging space, chest of drawers.
The stairs to the top floor are plank style and very steep not suitable for those with mobility issues or smaller children / there are added rails for support in general.
Fully enclosed courtyard / patio garden with high borders and mature flower beds. Surprisingly private and wonderful for afternoon sunshine.
Bench style table set up for 6 guests and other bistro set to make to 8.
Wi-Fi - 70mbps
Central heating throughout.
Towels and Linen provided.
Pets permitted - small fee additional (£30 per pet). Fully enclosed back yard. Please take care to clear up behind you.
Private driveway parking for 1 car (Additional free parking in the highstreet)
Cot available on request.
• Cocktail boxes using locally sourced ingredients available
• Private vineyard tours available.
• Michelin star restaurant, The West House, is available to book. It is just a few doors' away from the cottage.
• Many more entertainment and days out ideas on request via Bloom Stays.
Historic Biddenden is a picturesque village in the county of Kent. According to legend, it is named after the Biddenden Maids, twin sisters born in 1100 that were joined at the shoulders and hips. Biddenden All Saints church, dating back to the 13th Century and likely built on the site of a Saxon church, impressively heads the main street that is lined with Flemish clothworkers' cottages from the reign of Edward III. It is a pretty village with a growing reputation for local produce and excellent food. One-star Michelin restaurant, The West House, puts Biddenden on the map for fine diners, but for those wanting more casual fare, there is the Bake House café which serves tasty lunches and traditional tea and cakes. Nearby, the Heritage Garden Kitchen run by Amy & Dan is a real find for lazy brunches and it sits within Bloomsburys, the lifestyle, yoga and wellness hub.
For wine enthusiasts, nearby Biddenden Vineyard holds cellar-door tastings and you can walk the estate to take in the fantastic views. Towards Staplehurst, just 10 minutes drive away, Balfour winery at Hush Heath will draw you into its American-style tasting rooms, all glass and steel, with sophisticated English cheese platters to accompany the English whites, sparkling and reds.
There are many characterful ‘proper’ English pubs serving outstanding food and craft or local beers in the vicinity. The Three Chimneys at Biddenden comes highly recommended for its atmosphere and excellent food. The Milk House in Sissinghurst is another popular destination.
As well as the many local walks in the surrounding countryside, you can bike, hike or just amble around Bedgebury Forest, which is just a 15-minute drive away in Goudhurst, or Hemsted Forest, which is just an 11-minute drive. Plenty to see for garden lovers, with the National Trust’s Sissinghurst Castle Garden, nearby Hole Park, with its delightful valley of bluebells and wild garlic in the spring, and the famous Great Dixter house and gardens, to name just a few.
Culture, castles and history in every direction and mostly within a 40-minute drive. Historic towns, such as Tenterden, and Cranbrook which ha the tallest smock windmill in the UK. The Kent and Sussex Steam Railway is less than 5 miles drive and will transport you to Bodiam Castle. A Little further afield is Leeds Castle with its wonderful moat and many attractions for all. Scotney Castle, another National Trust treasure is not far and a stone's throw from Bewl Water, another great destination for hikers and bikers. Or perhaps a trip to the seaside, to the ancient town of Rye with its almost vertical cobbled streets. Game of golf? Sir Nick Faldo's signature golf course, Charts Hill, is just around the corner. We could go on. You'd best come and visit and see for yourself.
Christmas at Catslide Cottage 4.2/5
We stayed over Christmas in what is a wonderfully unique period property in Kent. The cottage was beautifully decorated for Christmas before our arrival, and really felt like a home away from home. Check in/out was also extremely easy. The cottage is very well equipped throughout (we cooked a 5 person Christmas dinner with ease!) although would benefit from having an icebox indoors rather than via the freezer in the shed. Would highly recommend and hope to stay again.
Guest | 07 January 2023