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Wing Hall, Wing, Oakham, Rutland
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The 100 acres of garden and grassland surrounding Wing Hall make for a near-perfect camping spot. Sitting just outside the pretty Rutland village ofWing, the site overlooks a collage of woods and rolling fields of wheat, rape, and (on closer inspection) buttercups. And just a mile down the road is the lovely 3,100-acre reservoir, Rutland Water. Created by flooding in 1974, the lake and its environs now provide a haven for wildlife, and sport and leisure opportunities - with the 25-mile track around its perimeter making a super cycle route.

Wing Hall, Wing, Oakham, Rutland


Robin Curley's great-great-grandfather built Wing Hall in 1891; she has lived here all her life, long before tiny Rutland regained its independence as a county.The campsite used to be a basic fiver-a-night stop, but Robin and her five children have-since created something sophisticated. Son Lyndon has transformed the onsite shop into a delectable deli stocked with locally sourced organic produce, artisan breads, wines, and ales alongside the usual basics, and daughter Zia runs the Veranda Cafe. Enjoying one of her cream teas on the lawn, you can easily forget you're on a campsite - it feels more like the grounds of a stately home. And despite its popularity, with the number of free-range children often matching the 100 or so roaming hens, the no-music policy helps to maintain an air of peace. As night falls, parents swifdy collect up their charges in compliance with one of the few onsite rules — kids back under supervision after dark. And if splendid isolation is required, there are plenty of nooks and crannies and hideaway pitches to hole up in.

Wing Hall, Wing, Oakham, Rutland


COOL FACTOR If you weren't to the manor born this is a great place to play pretend.

WHO'S IN? Tents, caravans, dogs (on leads) - yes. Young/ single-sex/3 or more tents groups - by arrangement only.

ON SITE Just 20 ol the 250 pitches are for caravans. Seven new showers have joined 5 older coin-operated (50p pieces) ones; 6 covered alfresco washing-up sinks; and 2 blocks of toilets complete the facilities, although there are plans for a washing machine. Fish (and birdwatch) on the 2 lakes at the bottom of the estate for a daily fee. No campfires.

Wing Hall, Wing, Oakham, Rutland


OFF SITE Right next door, Art de Jardin showcases contemporary artwork on selected days between June and August. At Rutland Water, Normanton Church Museum (01572 653026) charts the history of the reservoir, and the Rutland Belle (01572 787630) cruises around the shoreline from Whitwell. The Rock Blok outdoor adventure centre (01780 460060) has a high-rope course and abseil tower.

FOOD AND DRINK The Veranda Cafe opens at weekends; if you want to venture further afield, the 17th-century Kings Arms (01572 737634) in Wing is a short walk away and has real ales and top-notch, local, seasonal food.

GETTING THERE From the A47 take the A6003, on the outskirts of Uppingham, towards Oakham. At Preston, turn right after the village pub, signposted Wing. Follow the road up the hill to Wing and turn right into the campsite, which is at the top.

PUBLIC TRANSPORT Train to Oakham, then either the Rutland Flyer bus towards Corby, which passes through Wing once a day in one direction and twice in the other (Mon-Sat), or a taxi (around £10).

OPEN All year.

THE DAMAGE Adult £7 per night; child (under-14) £3.50.




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