Win a break at Hethpool House, Northumberland
By Colin Corlett, Northumbria Byways
As a child did you dream of a place so secret that it wasn’t on any maps? So secret that there were no sign posts pointing the way. So secret that you could walk all day and not see anybody? And if I was to tell you that there was a valley like this, with more than 100 kms of roads and paths, more than 12,000 acres of wilderness and with wildlife and history side by side would, you not be tempted to visit?
Well, let me introduce you to the College Valley. It sits on the northern slopes of the Cheviot Hills in Northumberland National Park and is all the above and much more. Think of the Valley as a private estate which is open to the public as long as they leave their cars at the entrance.
Many people will have walked around the outskirts for this wilderness welcomes walkers on the Pennine Way, walkers seeking the summit of the Cheviot and walkers on the St Cuthbert’s pilgrimage from Melrose to Lindisfarne.
For those who stay to enjoy the Valley there are great rewards.
Northumberland Hill Forts:
The National Park Hill Fort trail covers most of the lower northern end of the Valley. From Ring Chesters to Great Hetha and beyond you have easy low level walks which will reward you with great views.
The Valley is full of wildlife. From the feral goats to otters and deer they are all here. On the higher slopes you might be lucky and come across the rare black grouse.
Keys to the Past lists 170 sites of interest within the Valley. And this is without starting to look for the remains of aircraft which crashed here during WW2 or talking about how the valley was once owned by Admiral Collingwood of Trafalgar fame.
Enjoying the College Valley:
Whilst walking and wildlife are the main reasons people come to the valley there are other sports to be had here. Cycling, whether on a mountain bike along the ridges or just freewheeling down the miles of empty road is also popular. Horse riders are also welcomed and the valley has hosted carriage driving events. There have also been mountain running events and for those who fancy a little more excitement you can take a gliding lesson from the nearby Millfield aerodrome and look down on the Valley from 3,000 feet.
Hethpool House B&B
At the entrance to the Valley lies the medieval village of Hethpool with its quaint cottages. Here you will find Hethpool House, which offers bed and breakfast for guests. The house was substantially rebuilt in the early 20th Century by Sir Arthur Munro Sutherland. He was also the last private owner of Dunstanburgh Castle before donating it to the Nation.
Today, the house is run by Eildon and Martin Letts and they are happy to offer a free weekend B&B as a prize to be won by visitors to ThisisNorthumberland. The prize is two nights bed and breakfast for two people, staying in one room.
They will also be offering a total of 50 discounted days for those who miss out on the main prize. Terms and conditions are below.
It is free to enter this contest. All we ask is that your email address be used by Hethpool House so they can add you to their email newsletter. You can unsubscribe at any time via a link in the email.
Privacy – We respect your privacy and will never sell your details or pass on your details to any third party.
Closing date: October 31, 2012.
Contest rules: Only one entry per person and entrants must be 18-years-old or over and live in the UK. The draw will be conducted by an independent party and the winner will be the first name selected at random from all entries.
The break must be taken by the end of 2013. Bank Holidays are excluded, and you must negotiate the time of your prize with the accommodation provider. Please note that you will be responsible for all transport to and around Northumberland, as well as extras such as meals, drinks and spending money.
Owners, employees and contractors of Hethpool House, Northumbria Byways and Northumberland First are prohibited from entering this contest.