Woolley Grange Hotel – a must visit!

So January has been a busy time for us already. Lots of dog friendly trips and visits have been booked, friendships formed with some fabulous companies and more importantly friendships blossoming with lovely people.
My dogs may to the outsider be an obsession – four legged creatures that appear to rule my life and be at the centre of most things I do. I’m happy if people want to think that – what they may not see is the unconditional love those creatures give back to me and the opportunities and the doors they can open.
(Boots – Dubarry Clare – Dog Coats – Barbour Quilted Coats)
The first exciting door that was opened was our first (and hopefully not last) visit to the stunning Woolley Grange Hotel on the outskirts of Bradford-on-Avon in picturesque Wiltshire.
The stunning Jacobean Manor House has been transformed into a totally family friendly getaway. Their website states dogs are welcome, however on arrival its clear the effort Woolley Grange have gone to to make your dog feel as welcome as you do. If your really lucky, Rex the resident Cavalier King Charles will welcome you to his home – if he is otherwise engaged one of the friendly staff members can show you all to your room.

On entering one of Woolley’s luxury rooms, you will already feel able to relax in the homely yet grand surroundings. Beams overhead, huge comfortable beds in large spacious rooms with stunning views over the Wiltshire Countryside. All tastefully decorated with a fitting and appropriate ‘Country’ decor.
Your dog has their own bit of luxury to look forward too, with their very own welcome pack. Comprising of a bed, bowl, treats and a selection of fabulous walks to find in the area your dog really can be treated as one of the family.
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They are allowed in all areas of the hotel with the exception of the formal dining area, kitchen and spa – for those dogs who want a pamper session you can always pop to the Doghouse in Bradford-on-Avon for a wash and blowdry!

 

The grounds are all dog friendly, off lead in one of two fields for a fabulous run around (wellies may be needed). For dogs that like to experience the great outdoors there is a dog wash station at the hotel complete with warm water, towels and shampoo to ensure your pooch is gleaming ready for a night relaxing in front of the fire.

 

For residents of the hotel there is the facility for ‘dog listening’. All rooms are equipped with baby/dog monitors so when dining or using the spa facilities, reception staff can keep an ear out for your dog to ensure their needs are met and no problems occur.

 

 We were lucky enough to also be asked to stay for a cream tea – this is something I would highly recommend with or without your dog! Generously sized, home made scones with local jam and cream. The smell of the warm scones was heavenly and tasted just as good!

 

 After we finished our coffee we meandered outside to explore more of the grounds. With views over the Westbury White Horse, the grounds deserve their own write up, an ornamental pond lies immediately to the front of the hotel which is then surrounded by beautiful landscaped gardens. Tree swings, croquet and skittles are all outside for your enjoyment plus a well stocked toy basket by the front door in case you lost your tennis ball on your walk!
  
There really is so much to see and explore at Woolley Grange I would recommend staying to experience it for yourself. I’d like to extend a huge thank-you to the staff that looked after us during our visit. You are a credit to Woolley Grange and made the dogs and I feel so welcome and hopefully we come back for a night away and experience the amazing menu we saw!
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(Cape – Annabel Brocks Kimblewick, Dog Coats – Barbour Quilted Coats)
A huge thankyou to Judith White for taking the majority of photos featured in this blog – please follow her on instagram and Facebook

 

 

Pawsitively Perfect – Dog Friendly Dining

Its always nice getting home from a long day in the Somerset Countryside to be greeted with “would you like to go out for dinner tonight instead of us cooking?”
Both the two ‘big’ dogs were straight in their beds with their drying jumpers on after a busy day and had no intention of surfacing until the morning. Jelli on the other hand was rather excited of the prospect of dinner out!
 
We decided to venture to our old local – after not stepping foot in there for several months due to a owner changeover we were a little sceptical about how much ‘change’ would have happened.
 
We needn’t have worried though! A quick glance online at the menu showed a nice array of dishes including proper pub food and some slightly more exciting tastes. The website has also updated and we were delighted to see that Becky & Pearl the whippet looked forward to welcoming us – two and four legged – always a good thing when the resident hound gets a mention?!

When we arrived and ordered drinks Jelli was immediately spoiled with a couple of little dog biscuits from the bar and offered a bowl of water to have at our table. She politely accepted the biscuits and settled down under our table.

With the fire roaring in the bar it was a lovely atmosphere and very relaxing. We chose the Somerset Cider Rarebit and Scotch Egg of the Moment (Pork & Sage today) to start followed by the classic Strode Burger and Winter Vegetable Tart.

It was incredible – the hand made scotch egg was tasty and moist made with local hens eggs and the Somerset Cider Rarebit was full of flavour and neither were small portions! After tucking into those we eagerly awaited our main meals which came out after a short wait. The Winter Vegetable tart was gorgeous, I believe 12 different vegetables were included, all cooked exceptionally well and full of texture. The burger was a fabulous with lovely fries to accompany it.

Feeling rather full and relaxed with my glass of red wine slowly diminishing it was only right to have a couple of scoops of Champagne Sorbet to cleanse ones pallet and finish the evening off. The Chocolate fondant was just as delicious with a hot melt in the middle and side of salted caramel ice cream!

Dinner done and a cuddle with the gorgeous Pearl we headed to the bar to settle our bill. Jelli (who behaved beautifully) was given not just a biscuit but a huge Bonio to take home which she proudly carried to the car before eating it.

 

 

We are so glad our local is still that, local, inviting and friendly. We wont hesitate to return and highly recommend to anyone passing through the area to stop and pay them a visit.
 

 

Check out their website here for menus & directions! www.thestrodearms.co.uk

 

 

Afternoon Tea and a Spot of Shopping!


Rather excitingly 2018 is looking full of fun outings and adventures.

With visits to the Red Lion at Long Compton, The Luttrell Arms in Dunster and lots more already in the diary it’s probably a good idea to have a bit of a groom and tidy up.

However before then we have a very exciting trip planned not too far from home……..

 

Woolley Grange in Bradford-On-Avon is the perfect getaway for the two and four legged alike. Nestled in the little Hamlet of Woolley Green, the stunning Jacobean Manor House is set in 14 acres of doggy filled heaven! The lovely team at Woolley Grange have invited us for a spot of afternoon tea and explore the hotel and what is has to offer! Fingers crossed that gorgeous fire is roaring away!

However its only right that before then we have a little explore around the Doghouse – perhaps Bradford-On-Avon’s BEST shop – well in the eyes of Jelli and Isla it is! Tucked away in Lamb Yard in the centre of the town, the Doghouse is the perfect place to have a coffee for me and a puppacino & pup cake for the girls. With the vast array of gorgeous gifts, toys, treats and well – everything a dog could possibly cross their paws for – I think its only fair they chose a treat to take home.
Perhaps one of the fabulous Woof Boxes or some treats from the lovely Lily’s Kitchen or Innocent Hound?
       
So while the girls eagerly await the days to go by so they can actually go and explore and have fun – I need to decide what we are all wearing especially in this changeable British weather! I feel some browsing of the Teddy Maximus, Bath Country Pets, Annabel Brocks and Hyde & Hare websites are in order!