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More things to do while you’re staying at Tom’s and Douglas’s Barns

Happy side car safariists IMG_6536

Alicia and Stephen, off to explore the White Peak in a sidecar from Russia

There are so many things to do while you’re staying in Tom’s and Douglas’s Barns that even the the choice of ‘usual’ things can be overwhelming. There’s which walk to go on? Where to go? Shall we visit Chatsworth, Haddon, Hardwick, Keddleston, Lyme Park or Sudbury? Or perhaps Tissington (the Well Dressings are on as I write (May 9-15 2013)… Then again, there’s the World Heritage site at Cromford, or Buxton Opera House or even Alton Towers or the various caverns. You can hang glide or make chocolate.

I’m only just getting going – haven’t mentioned the wonderful pubs and Farmers’ Markets, Chatsworth Farm Shop or the Cheese Shop but before I bore you rigid if I haven’t already, there’s one activity that wouldn’t necessarily come immediately to mind.

And that is Bill Purvis’s Sidecar Safari. We knew of it, and indeed knew that Bill offered Peak District Premier Cottages guests a half price discount but we hadn’t actually seen it in action. It took (as so often) our guests to introduce us to what’s available locally. Alicia and Stephen were staying for their honeymoon in Tom’s Barn last week. They packed as much as possible into their stay, including a trip in the Safari Sidecar, planned for after lunch on Tuesday.

Great was the excitement. At 2 o’clock Alicia and Stephen were waiting in their outdoor kit (Bill provides proper motor cycle gear), John had his camera at the ready while I fussed around excitedly as we waited for the sound of a motor bike.

Greater still was the excitement when we could hear it coming up our hill and turning in the gate, gleaming in its Russian khaki beauty. Helmets and jackets were donned and off they went, to Biggin, Hartington, the Manifold Valley, Wetton, Stanshope and Tissington and back through the ford (twice apparently!).

They returned about 3 hours later, glowing with fun and achievement, and Bill looked as if he had throughly enjoyed it too. Alicia and Stephen say it was the highlight of their stay: they’d had a wonderful sightseeing trip passing through some beautiful scenery, with lots of friendly waves from everyone they passed. And they were so grateful for the half price discount Bill gives all our guests (we’re wondering now if John and I will qualify too..?).

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