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Middle Woodbatch Farm, Woodbatch Road, Bishop's Castle, Shropshire
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Cross a 170-acre farm that takes a maximum of 10 tents at any one time with friendly owners who hold a relaxed pitch-where-you-like attitude and you've got yourself one very roomy campsite. And if you don't mind a walk to the facilities (about two thirds of a mile at the furthest point), you really can get away from everything and everyone.

Middle Woodbatch Farm, Woodbatch Road, Bishop's Castle, Shropshire


A family farm since the 1930s, Middle Woodbatch is close enough to the small town of Bishop's Castle so that its two excellent pubs-cum-microbreweries are within walking distance (about a mile and a half), but just far enough away to feel completely countrified. The farm comes complete with some woodland (build those dens, kids), two top-notch wet rooms (with non-slip cushion flooring), a super-clean campers' kitchen, and an eye-easing view from most fields over the top of its neighbouring town to the distinctive bulk of the Long Mynd. There are also herds of cattle, flocks of sheep, the odd pig, and chickens moseying about.

Walkers (and, hey, amblers and shamblers too) can tumble out of their tents to attack a portion of the 139-mile Shropshire Way, which cruises right through the farm, while the Bishop's Castle Ring (aka the ВС Ring), Offa's Dyke Path, and Kerry Ridgeway are but a hot buttered scone's throw away.

Middle Woodbatch Farm, Woodbatch Road, Bishop's Castle, Shropshire


At the farmhouse there are three bedrooms for those in your party who prefer a B&B to an airbed & breakfast, while horses in your group can be put up in the farm's stables and put out to graze in a lush field (ready for the Blue Remembered Hills Bridleway, which also runs through the farm).

COOL FACTOR Room to breathe, and then some.

WHO'S IN? Tents, well-behaved dogs - yes. Campervans, caravans, groups - no.

ON SITE Fire bowls for every pitch (firewood £3 per bag). Just 10 pitches, 1 loo, and 2 wet rooms (showers £1 - honesty pot); a bench in the wet room can be used for baby-changing; wheelchair access for loo, but no handrails. Campers' kitchen includes fridge/freezer, microwave, toaster, washing-up sink, kettle, sockets, and info leaflets.

OFF SITE At weekends (2pm-5pm) you can get steamed up at Bishop's Castle Railway and Museum (www.bcrailway.co.uk). The town also has a small leisure centre with a swimming pool (01588 630243). Down the road at Craven Arms there's Mickey Miller's Family Playbarn (01588 673800), should the weather discourage family play outdoors.

Middle Woodbatch Farm, Woodbatch Road, Bishop's Castle, Shropshire


FOOD AND DRINK The 2 microbrewery pubs in town are the Six Bells (01588 638930) with its occasional cheery theme night (Dutch dishes, Bulgarian dishes, and more) and the Three Tuns (01588 638797), which has pretensions to gastronomy. The Rocke Cottage Tea Rooms (01588 660631), is a pleasant 1920s/1930s throwback at Clungunford, serving scones, cakes, light lunches, and all manner of teas.

GETTING THERE From the A488 at Bishop's Castle turn west along the B4385 (Brampton Road) and, at the church on your left, turn left (effectively straight ahead) on to Kerry Lane. Take the fourth left on to Woodbatch Road, to the end.

PUBLIC TRANSPORT Either take the train to Church Stretton and shuttle bus (April-September) or train to Shrewsbury and bus no. 552/553, to Bishop's Castle. The owners will pick up from Bishop's Castle by arrangement.

OPEN April-September.

THE DAMAGE Adult £7; child £2.50, under-6s free.




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