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Dover and the White Cliffs

Posted on by sarah

Dover is a town and major ferry port in the home county of Kent. It faces France across the narrowest part of the English Channel. Its strategic position has always been evident throughout the history, archaelogical finds have revealed that the area has always been a focus for peoples entering and leaving Britain.

Dover figuered largely in the Domesday Book as an important borough. it also served as a bastion against various attackers: notably the french during the Napoleonice Wars; and against Germany during World War 2.

Dover Castle

Commaninding the shortest sea crossing between England and the continent, Dover Castle Boasts a long and immensely eventful history. Its spectacular site above the famous white cliffs was originally an Iron Age fort, and still houses a Roman light-house, one of the best preserved in Europe. The Anglo-Saxon church beside it was once part of a Saxon fortified settlement.

Today you was tour the secret Wartime Tunnels and experience life as it was lived by the 700 personnel based here in the worst days of WW2. You can see the Command Centre where Sir Winston Churchill viewed the Battle of Britain, and relive the drama as a surgeon struggles to save the life of an injured pilot in the under-ground hospital.

The White Cliffs

Known throughout the world, the ionic White Cliffs are internationally recognised, so much so they were voted Britains most popular stretch of coastline. They have witnessed much action and invaions throughout the centuries- the historic Dunkirk evacuation was even planned from within them. Today they provide a welcome sight to the millions of visitors who visit White Cliffs Country.

They White Cliffs of Dover are one of Britains most instantly recognised natural land marks. Rising out of the English channel to over 300ft high in places, they are a dramatic and inspiring sight from the sea and provide superb views out across the Channel towards France. The cliffs stretch for 10 mils between Folkestone to West and Walmer to the East. David Ballamy describes chalk grasslands near the cliffs as ‘Britain’s equivalent of the tropical rainforest’, such is the diversity of the plants and animals.


Posted on by sarah

A Kentsh Cobnut is a type of hazelnut, just as a Bramley is a type of apple. Unlike most other nuts, cobnuts are sold fresh not partially dried. They are in season typically from the end of August through to October. Stored nuts may be available from selected outlets through to Christmas.

At the begining of the season the husks are green and the kernels juicy. Nuts harvested later on are ripe, have brown shells and husks, and the full flavour has developed. Cobnuts are sold fresh and like other fresh foods they should be kept in the fridge, for example in the salad drawer. Husks should be removed if they are loose but it is not necessary to remove every one. the addition of a little salt helps preserve the nuts. Stored correctly, ripe nuts will keep until Christmas and beyond.

Cobnuts are delicious fresh, for example as a snack or in salads. They are also excellent roasted, which brings out their flavour. Roasted nuts can be eaten on their own, or used whole, chopped or ground to flavour pasta, meringues, cakes, etc.

To roast cobnuts, crack and shell them, then cook them on tin foil or on a baking tray in an oven heated to about 150 degrees for an hour or so; the cooking time depends on how ripe they are. First they become soft, but do not remove them until they have hardened. Be careful not to burn them.

Many cobnut orchards or ‘plats’ are a century old or more, but new plats are now being planted again. you can grow them in your garden but the grey squirrels may eat them before they are ripe. Old nut plats are important for nature conservation as they support many animals including the doormouse with is a protected by law.


Posted on by sarah

If a sea side town is what your looking for, look no further than Whitstable. With its working harbour and narrow streets of fishermans cottages, situated just seven miles from Canterbury on the North Kent coast.

Famed since Roman times for its oyster, Whitstables fortune has always been linked with the oyster industry. At the turn on the century, more than 100 smacks and 500 people were employed in gathering and selling Whitstable oysters.

After several years of decline as the result of disease, pollution and over fishing, Seasalter Shellfish (Whitstable) Ltd is now the biggest producer of seed oysters in Europe, suppying literally billions of native and gigas seed oysters and clams to concerns throughout the British Isles, Europe and Africa.

In addition to its oysters, Whitstable is credited with having the first regular steam railway passenger service in the world. This came about with the opening of the railway to Canterbury in 1830 and the building of the harbour in 1832, both events greatly improving the town’s prosperity. The new port could accomodate 20 sailing ships of up to 150 tons, and the railway sidings up to 80 trucks. Coal was the main cargo but, in the harbour’s heyday, sailing ships from Whitstable went to destinations all over the world, carrying cargo of all kinds.

Whitstables character is stil; strongly influenced by its maratime past. these links with the sea provde interest to residents and visitors alike and are the basis of many of the fascinating displays at the Whitstable Museum, at 5a High Street.

Whitstables past may have formed its character, but changing times have meant new activities and interests. these days, the town is becoming known as the venue for water sports, with national championships in windsurfing and water skiing being held regularly. both activiies adding to the towns established popularity as a centre for sailing.

Increased tourism has meant a crowded calendar of summer activities, inuding the anual Oyster Festival in July, Harbour day in June and in August, the carnival and regatta.

The Green room

Posted on by sarah

The Green room is an en-suite double room with a shower. It overlooks the green at the front of the house and is the perfect sun spot for the afternoon sun set.

This room has a cosy, country feel with a newly renovated en-suite shower room. With a separate entrance to the main house you can come and go as you please as well as being just a short stroll to the breakfast room.

The Pink Room

Posted on by sarah

The pink room is a newly refurbished twin room that can be doubled up as a family room or an en-suite double.  With stunning views across the green, this room is perfect for a peaceful rest to recharge your batteries.

The pink room has a separate entrance to the house so you can feel right at home and come and go as you please. The room comes equipped with a HD digital TV, tea and coffee making facilities, bath and separate shower cubicle and a hair dryer

Ideal for linking with the adjacent  Green Room  for  those with larger families or those parents who wish to have their children sleeping in a different room.

The Blue Room

Posted on by sarah

The blue room is a large, luxurious en-suite double with a large spa bath and views overlooking the paddock where horses graze. Situated in the heart of the main house, ideal for single women and just a stroll downstrairs will lead you to the breakfast room.

The Barn

Posted on by sarah
Barn exterior

Our converted Barn unit is ideal for family escapes, a get away for couples or just a luxury stop over, whether you want to self cater or just come for bed and breakfast. With high quality finishes throughout and state of the art under floor heating this is country living in style. Its fully functioning kitchen, with oven, microwave, fridge/freezer and washing machine means your stay can be as flexible as you want it to be. It also has a wet room with a shower and disabled facilities in both the kitchen and bathroom. Free wifi is available and there is a TV with all digital channels in the bedroom. The sofa bed in the living space can be easily converted into a bed to transform  this double en-suite into a family room- further mattresses can be added to accommodate more guests. We also have a rain water harvesting system for our toilets that means we save water- an important feature in the south east-  one of the driest places in the united kingdom. This light and spacious barn conversion is perfect for families or couples and is dog friendly which is great if you dont want your furry friend to miss out on the holiday!

Why Wye!

Posted on by sarah

 Only 15mins from Iffin Farmhouse, by car, through the village of Petham (famous for its beautiful surrounding landscapes and “chocolate box” style cottages), past the poor house in Waltham and on along narrow country lanes to the top of the North Downs.

Absolutely stunning views stretching for miles to the most western edge of the county and on into East Sussex and to the South spectacular views of Romney Marsh.

In days long ago dense forest covered the low ground in Kent so travellers to France made their way along the North Downs. They dropped down to Wye to the ford on the River Stour. And so a hamlet grew up first near the river providing rest and comfort for travellers.

The more agile of walkers today can follow the same paths, also stopping off for some liquid refreshments at a variety of establishments before ascending a steep climb back up to the top of the Downs passing by The Crown before continuing eastwards to take in, again, the spectacular views.

The Crown was cut into the chalk hillside to commemorate the coronation of Edward VII by college students, on the Wye college estate on 12th June 1902. Restored between 1991 and 1995, recently re-whitened (April 1997) for Wye College’s 550th Anniversary The Crown can be seen from miles around

Turner Contemprary

Posted on by sarah
Turner Contemporary

On a cloudless day in March we finally made it to Margate! Meandering along the back roads from Iffin Lane past Howletts Wild Animal Park (http://www NULL.aspinallfoundation, Wingham Wildlife Park (http://www NULL.winghamwildlifepark and nostaligiacally the site of the Richborough Cooling Towers, which had been demolished in 21 seconds a few days previous (see demolition (http://www NULL.dailymail NULL.html)) we arrived at the Turner Contemporary (http://www NULL.turnercontemporary and the exhibition Turner and the Elements. Without any doubt the architectural style of the building is very contemporary and evokes a mixture of emotions against the backdrop of victorian Margate and its harbour and Turner’s sea scape.

On entering the spacious foyer was Rodin’s sculpture The Kiss, on loan from the Tate, which apparently has only been out of London on 3 ocassions.

On the first floor was the main, and first major exhibition devoted to the art of JMW Turner , exploring the role that the four Classical elements of air, earth, fire and water played in his art as well as his fasciation for depicting the elemnts in fusion. The exhibition also inclues several pianting s of the Margate coastline, offering a unique opportunity to experience the stunning works in the very lcoation that origianlly inspired Turner to create them.

Well worth 40 minute trip from Canterbury. Great Cafe and very wheelchair friendly.

Purple Flag Award

Posted on by sarah

Canterbury receives Purple Flag (http://www NULL.purpleflag NULL.pdf) accreditation!

The Purple Flag scheme recognises excellence in the management of town and city centres at night and aims to raise standards and improve the quality of our towns and cities at night.

As an accredited city centre, we can take pride in the fact the place in which we live, work and play is a safe and welcoming environment. Canterbury is one of only 25 town and city centres to have achieved this accreditation creating a real point of difference between our city and other destinations.