Frequently Asked Questions
Click on the question heading to reveal the answer.
Key collection and cottage directions?
Once you have made your final payment, we will either email or post to you the directions, a map and arrangements for collection the keys to your cottage. Should these not arrive then please let us know and we will send duplicates.
Can I bring my pet?
Most of our cottages do not accept pets, but we do have some that do-this is stated either way in the cottage description, but please do feel free to contact us if you want us to advise you which cottages do/do not accept pets. Currently we accept pets at Rose Cottage, Askrigg, 3 Winville Mews, Askrigg, Karnten Barn, Askrigg and Nanny End, Askrigg.
Can I smoke in the cottage?
All of our cottages are non smoking, and we ask that this is respected. If you are a smoker, and smoke outside, then please dispose of your cigarette butts thoughtfully, as we have had some complaints where they have been thrown into adjacent gardens.
Are there cots, high chairs and stairgates?
These are provided in some, but not all, of the cottages, and this is specified in the cottage description. Feel free to phone us if you would like more information on which cottages provide these. Some of our cottages are not suitable for young children, and this is stated in the description where this is the case.
What time can I get into the cottage and what time do I have to leave?
You can take over your cottage from 3pm or 4pm on the first day of your holiday and need to leave it by 10am on the last day of your holiday, unless you have made specific arrangements to vary these times. The arrival time is detailed in the directions to your holiday cottage which is sent when you have made the final payment for the holiday. Please try not to arrive early or leave late, which can cause difficulties on busy changeover days because the owners only have this short period of time on changeover days to prepare clean the property for the next customer and undertake any maintenance needed.
Do I need to hire/bring linen and towels
All of our properties provide bed linen, and the beds will be made up for your arrival. Unless shown as included within the holiday price, then towels are available to hire at an extra £5 per person per week or short break. Please advise at the time of booking if towels are required where they are not provided, although you can advise us later if you decide that you do want to hire towels.
Is parking available?
Some cottages have limited or on street parking on a first come first served basis, and if parking is available with the cottage then this is detailed in the description, along with the number of vehicles that it is available for. Please contact us if you would like to check, as we will be able to advise and describe the parking availability for each property. The cottages are old, historic properties on the whole, built in an era before cars had been invented, which is a large part of their attraction, but also means that not every property has parking with it. Where there are specific parking arrangements given, we do ask that they are respected.
Do I pay extra for electricity, oil, gas, coal and logs
All of our holiday cottages include any costs for electricity, oil and gas, if applicable, in the hire charge-we do not believe in reading meters and charging you extra. Coal and/or logs are provided at all of our properties with open fires-the only charge that may be made is a small one to cover this cost, but this will be stated in the cottage description, or you can contact us to check.
Do I need to take out cancellation cover?
Cancellation Insurance is not compulsory but we strongly recommend such insurance cover. We can provide an application form for a policy with Travellers Protection Services Ltd. Should cancellation be made which does not qualify under the terms of the Customers own insurance policy or one obtained from Travellers Protection Services Ltd then the hire charge is due in full. We will seek to relet the property on your behalf at the best possible price but not necessarily at the advertised brochure price and if successful would normally return the balance of the hire charge to you less the non refundable deposit. If the property remains unlet the Customer is due to pay in full. The Agents reserve the right to pursue this claim on behalf of the Owners plus any legal costs incurred. For details of Travellers Protection Services Ltd. click here.
What equipment will the cottage have?
All of our cottages have at least one colour TV, cooker, fridge, microwave, washing machine, toasters, iron and ironing board, and much, much more, and this is detailed in each cottage description. Each cottage has sufficient dining and easy chairs, beds, crockery, cutlery, glassware and kitchen utensils for the maximum number of people stated for that cottage. If you have any specific queries, then please do not hesitate to contact us. Our most common query is at Christmas, and whether the turkey roasting tin will fit in the oven.
What happens if I leave something behind?
We will return any lost property on request and at your cost. Whilst we will make all reasonable efforts to locate and return items reported to us after a clients departure, we take no responsibility for lost property that subsequently cannot be found.
What happens in an emergency?
For any maintenance queries during your stay, please initially contact the owners, whose contact details are provided in each cottage. For medical emergencies there are details of local doctors, hospitals and dentists provided in each cottage, and the location of the nearest payphone should you need it.
Is the price per person or per cottage?
The hire charge is the price for the cottage, not per person.
Can I bring extra guests?
The holiday cottage will sleep only the maximum number stated in the description, and this includes children. The only exception is babies in cots, but please check with us beforehand to ensure that either a cot is available or that there is space in the cottage for a travelcot. Please do not arrive with more than the maximum occupancy as you may risk being refused entry to the cottage if you do so. If you have booked a cottage for less than the maximum number of people stated, and later decide to bring extra guests to utilise the spare capacity, then this should not be a problem, but please let us know beforehand.
Do we pay extra for cleaning?
The cost of cleaning is included in the hire charge, and the cottage will be clean and prepared for your arrival, also there will be a supply of cleaning materials available for your use at the cottage during your stay. However, with self catering cottages you do undertake to leave the cottage as you found it when you arrived, and so we ask that you do leave the cottage clean and tidy when you depart.
Why do you charge a Good Housekeeping deposit?
We charge a Good Housekeeping deposit to cover any damage that is done to the cottage during your stay; to pay for any breakages that are not normal wear and tear; to cover additional cleaning costs where the cottage is left dirty beyond what we would normally expect, or to cover the cost of any missing items. We return this deposit to you once we know that the cottage has been left clean and tidy and in good order.
Can you guarantee good weather?
Sadly, we can't, but we would if we could! However, you will get a warm and cosy welcome in each of our cottages, all of which have books, games, TV's, and either a video, DVD player or both. Some have satellite TV and Broadband-check the cottage description for specific details. Each also has ample Tourist Information to tell you things to do in the area when the weather is not so good as it might be, plus recommendations in the Visitor Book from previous guests. We can also happily advise you on places to go and things to do, whatever the weather.
What happens if we can't work the central heating or something gets broken?
Don't worry-there is a full information pack in each holiday cottage which includes appliance instructions, and the owners contact details should you need their advice.
Can I preorder groceries?
If you contact us we can tell you which is the nearest shop for you to order your groceries from, plus there is a link on our website or we can post you details of Granary Foods. Granary Foods will deliver homemade frozen ready meals, cakes and biscuits plus you can order from a list of groceries for your arrival-these will be placed in the cottage for your arrival or shortly after. Part of the fun of a holiday is shopping in the local shops-we do not have many of the high street shops up in The Dales, and the food is mostly local and packed with flavour.
What do the star gradings mean?
VisitBritain is the organisation created in 2003 to market Britain to the UK and the rest of the world. Part of this was the development of standards of quality of accommodation, to give the star ratings which we quote for each cottage. They are an independent assessment undertaken on our behalf by Quality in Tourism, which brings together the vast experience of dedicated tourism professionals who assess over 23,000 accommodation businesses across the UK each year. The gradings start at 1 star and the maximum which can be achieved is 5 stars. All of our cottages are 3 stars or better. In essence, the higher the star rating, the higher the overall level of quality you can expect to find in a cottage. We give a rough guide to the gradings below; 1 star = Simple, comfortable, no frills 2 stars = Well presented and well run 3 stars = Good level of quality and comfort 4 stars = Excellent standard throughout 5 stars = Exceptional with a degree of luxury Awaiting inspection = we are waiting for the cottage to be officially inspected and allocated a grading-in this case we will be able to advise you of the grading that we expect the cottage to achieve If you would like more information on the Quality Standards and star gradings then please contact us or you can look at the full details on the VisitBritain website click here
What should I expect from a holiday in a holiday cottage?
The bulk of our cottages are historic, old properties, at least 100 years old and often closer to 200 years old or more. They are packed with character and original features, but were built long before the days of damp proof courses, cavity wall insulation and double glazing. They are all kept well heated, and most have open fires, but you may see an occasional damp patch, especially after heavy rain or a long winter. In damp weather, they may also have a tendency to condensation, especially if the bathroom is being heavily used. The simplest way to solve this is to open a window or two and let the air circulate. We can assure you that all of our cottages are very well cared for and maintained-the above are just features of old stone built properties. Also, the cottages are in living and working communities, mostly in the Yorkshire Dales National Park. These are rural communities and the working day can start early, especially in summer, so you may encounter cows on their way to or from milking, flocks of sheep being moved about at certain times of year, and on market days animals being taken to and from market, often in trailers towed on the back of tractors. Tractors are regular road users. You can therefore expect to be part of our community for the duration of your stay, and please do enjoy the local events and use our local shops and facilities, as this keeps them viable and vibrant.
What does 'self catering' mean?
Exactly that-you cater for yourself. Basically you rent a holiday cottage and treat this as your home whilst you are staying in it. The cottage will be fully equipped as a home from home, but you will need to provide your own meals whilst you are staying in the cottage, whether it be shopping and cooking for yourself or visiting the local pubs, tea shops and restaurants.
Is the availability on the website kept up to date?
Yes it is.
I want to buy a holiday cottage-can you advise me what I should look for?
Yes we can-we have an owners pack which includes this advice, but we can probably advise you best over the phone or in person, as we can then tailor our advice to your needs as well. The earlier you get us involved in this process, the better. We can also advise on how you need to set up and furnish the cottage for maximum letting, and therefore, income, and the best locations for this. Clients nowadays want more upmarket, quality homes from home, providing the same or better facilities than they enjoy at home. The trend is for plenty of space, comfort and facilities, with more bathrooms, an excellent kitchen which includes a full range of white goods, a wood burner or open fire and full entertainment equipment including TV, DVD, Sky and internet access. There is a move towards more short break holidays throughout the year, and at shorter notice with more internet access and booking online. Our most popular cottages are in or on the edge of villages or towns that have at least one pub, and if possible a shop. They are characterful cottages with original features, that have been thoughtfully and well refurbished/renovated, and offer these traditional features and also all of the modern comforts. An open fire or woodburner is very popular, as is parking for at least one car, a garden, which does not have to be large, and cleanliness is an absolute essential. In a nutshell, the best piece of advice that we can give is to buy and set up a cottage that you would want to holiday in yourself, and come back to year after year, with real WOW factor as soon as you walk in.
I already own a holiday cottage-would you manage it for me?
The key factors that we take into account are location, size, facilities and what you want from us and the cottage. We offer a very personalised service in North Yorkshire, and the Yorkshire Dales in particular. We can act simply as your letting agent, with you taking responsibility for all of the cleaning, presentation and maintenance of the cottage, or we can undertake more of the day to day management of the cottage, to a mutually agreed level. Our price varies according to your needs, as we offer a bespoke service for each property. We do have an owners pack which will be very happy to forward to you, or please telephone us and we will be happy to discuss your requirements in more detail. We do insist that all of our cottages are at least 3 stars on the VisitBritain star grading, and that the cottages are inspected annually by VisitBritain, and that the cottages are kept well maintained, furnished and spotlessly clean.