Dolphinholme House Farm

UK England North West England Lancashire Lancaster

  • Good walks nearby
Ready-made, comfortable ‘camping’ in a beautiful, rural location with good old-fashioned fun a-plenty
Dolphinholme House Farm has been in John Gorst’s family since the 1930s, sitting at the western edge of the Trough of Bowland, a truly beautiful part of the world, just south of the Lake District. Seven spacious, and very comfortable ‘tents’ – they have raised wooden floors and beds with mattresses, pillows and even duvets – are set out on the edge of 35 acres of woodland, overlooking a 10-acre field. The River Wyre, fringed by a line of trees at the bottom of the field, seems to be the only thing rushing by in this peaceful spot. The emphasis here is on good old-fashioned fun, and the site offers plenty of opportunities for this – swimming, paddling and pottering around with fishing nets in the river, or just picnicking on its banks, climbing trees, running about in the fields and climbing on bales of hay. And in the evening, you can take your pick from the simple pleasures of stories around the campfire, reading together or playing games by candlelight. Children can also learn about life on a farm and where their food comes from by helping with the milking (the farm makes its own goat’s cheese), gathering eggs from the henhouse or helping to make pizza or bread in the traditional wood-fired oven.



Each tent has a wood-burning stove, flush toilet, cold running water, a worktop, chiller, dining table, chairs and a couple of comfy deckchairs, and there is a picnic table outside, with stone circles for campfires. There are 2 bedrooms and a bunkroom for the kids, and lighting is by oil lamp and candles – there’s no electricity. A shower block has 3 hot showers, including a family shower. The honesty shop is always open and well stocked with fruit and veg, Forest of Bowland butter, locally sourced meat, the farm’s own cheese and frozen food, including home-cooked frozen ready-meals. There are board games and toys to borrow. Kids of the 2-legged variety can play with the 4-legged ones in the barn, which also has a hay mountain for crawling over and a tyre swing, and there are ponies, hens, pigs, rabbits and guinea pigs – so lots of petting opportunities. There’s also onsite bike hire (bring your own helmets) and tours of the farm, with trails and footpaths.


Local attractions include picnicking at Abbeystead reservoir, fishing at Wyreside lakes (01524 791154), or horse-riding at the Bay Horse School of Equitation at Forton (07791 476033), just the other side of the M6. The traditional seaside village of Arnside is a little over half an hour away, 4 miles beyond Morecambe.

Food & Drink

Wallings Farm near Cockerham (01524 793781) has an ice-cream parlour as well as a nice coffee shop and a good restaurant. The Fleece at Dolphinholme (01524 791233) serves hearty pub grub while the Bay Horse at Forton offers gastro-pub fare (01524 791204).


Easter–late Oct.

Family Friendly

There’s a river. Some people may need reminding to wash their hands after playing with animals. As it’s a working farm there are agricultural vehicles moving around.


Dolphinholme House Farm, Dolphinholme House Farm, Dolphinholme, Lancashire LA2 9DJ

Show Map

Getting There

Leave the M6 at junction 33 taking the fi st exit off the roundabout. Take an immediate left up Hampson Lane to a T-junction, and turn right. Follow the road for 2 miles to a crossroads with the Fleece pub in front and turn left to Dolphinholme village, then continue to the first of a set of mini roundabouts. Take a sharp right into Lower Dolphinholme, go through the village and take the first lane on your left after leaving the village up a hill. You will be provided with full directions when you reserve your tent.

A bus to Keld leaves Richmond train station 3 times a day.


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