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“If you like your tea served in a 'booby-bird' teapot.....!” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Thornley House

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Thornley House
3.0 of 5 Bed and Breakfast   |   Thornley Gate NE47 9NH, England   |  
Hotel amenities
Nairn, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
34 reviews 34 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
40 helpful votes 40 helpful votes
“If you like your tea served in a 'booby-bird' teapot.....!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 26, 2012

If you expect matching furniture, a pile of pointless cushions on your bed and your toothmug encased in a little plastic bag - this isn't the place for you. This is like staying with your favourite, slightly eccentric auntie, who is welcoming without fussing.

Eileen's guest house for cat lovers is such a simple and successful idea, her home and garden reflect her years of travel and her love of animals (especially big cats). It's homely and lived-in and the décor is quite dated, but it's clean and comfortable. I can't remember the last time I slept in a bed with sheets, blankets and a bed-cover - late in the evening you almost expect Eileen to appear at the bedroom door with a mug of cocoa!

We were adopted by Ivana (the ginger) who curled up on our bed most of the night - perfect. Sergei (Maine Coon) was beautiful and much-photographed! A mention too for Shirley (human!) who cooked us an excellent breakfast in the mornings. No sitting at individual tables here eating in strained silence, we all sat round one big table and enjoyed chatting with the other guests.

We were only there for a couple of nights, but after a stroll into Allendale we settled in the delightful garden in a beautiful, peaceful spot of rural England. Spent a blissful couple of hours swaying gently in a sun-dappled hammock, reading, Ivana nearby, while the wind rustled through the trees. The next day when the weather wasn't so pleasant we relaxed in the lounge, again reading, Ivana on my knee, Sergei beside my husband, rain battering off the window, while Eileen played beautiful music on the piano in the other lounge.

Relaxing doesn't get any better than this.
Will we go back? Most definitely.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Danielgarden, Owner at Thornley House, responded to this review, September 11, 2012
I,m so glad you like my teapot from the Galapagos .It is hand painted and the artist is well known and exhibits in New York. I was at a boot camp in Bulgaria in april and bought a lovely cat teapot.I,m going to buy more teapots in Bulgria in October

I hope you will come again to Thornley House
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105 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (21)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Vietnamese first
  • Any
English first
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 11, 2012 via mobile

A truely unforgettable stay. After seeing the gorgeous cats on four in a bed, we couldn't resist! We were welcomed by the most amazing Eileen, who welcomed us into her amazing treasure trove of a home. After chatting for hours with delicious tea, we finally saw our lovely room, cometeceith Harriet the resident tabby who joined us in bed at 6am! A truely lovely experience I can't wait to relive xxxxx

  • Stayed August 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Danielgarden, Owner at Thornley House, responded to this review, September 11, 2012
Thankyou so much for taking the trouble to write such a nice review
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Chester, United Kingdom
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 25, 2012

Our stay at Thornley House was a magical mystery tour of delights. Eileen and Shirley are indeed fabulous hostesses and we enjoyed our stimulating chats in the cosy lounge. Gilbert and Sydney, the donkeys, quite stole our hearts and we enjoyed meeting the cats, with their individual characters. The garden is a complete delight, with a lovely surprise round every corner. The breakfast table is a masterpiece. We wished breakfast could go on for ever, there were so many tasty dishes to sample. Not only is Thornley House a great place to stay, but provides a wonderful base for visits to the forts on Hadrian's Wall and the stately houses of Northumberland. Shirley's local knowledge about routes, locations, car parks, local rail travel, etc. was invaluable. A holiday at Thornley House is thoroughly recommended.

J & H

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Danielgarden, Owner at Thornley House, responded to this review, September 8, 2012
Thank you for such a kind review. Hope to see you again soon

from eileen
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London, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
166 reviews 166 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 71 cities Reviews in 71 cities
88 helpful votes 88 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 19, 2012

Eileen and Shirley are the most fabulous hosts. The breakfasts are exquisite and I love the fact that everything is fresh - the juices are squeezed to order and even the jams and marmalades are homemade. A nice touch too that she leaves homemade biscuits/cakes in your room for when you return from your days out.

Originally I was a little disappointed with the rooms - I thought the furniture was old and the decor fussy - but it grew on me as time went by - on closer inspection the furniture is not just old, it is art deco and Eileen's tastes may be eccentric, but it actually works!

Needless to say you don't go here if you don't like cats, but they are magnificent beasts, and great company as well.

Finally the scenery around Allendale is stunning - I had many "Top Gear" moments on the surrounding roads as they have to be some of the best in the country/world!

I don't normally stay in B&B's - they can be too restrictive, but this was exceptional - I would go again tomorrow, and if you are still reading this review, so should you!

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Danielgarden, Owner at Thornley House, responded to this review, September 8, 2012
I,m so glad you like my home and Shirley,s biscuits. I have forbidden her to leave them where I can find them otherwise,I polish off the lot. There will be a new member of the family next week- a 6 weeek old kitty

from eileen
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Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 29, 2011

We have just spent the most warm, comforting and relaxing Christmas Break at Thornley House, we were so well looked after by Eileen and Shirley, the fresh home cooked food was delicious, meals were taken in the Dining Room overlooking the most beautiful gardens and stunning views. The Company of the other guests was fantastic, while Syd and Gilbert the Handsome Donkeys, and the Beautiful "Famous Five" cats makes Thornley House the ideal place to stay for Animal Lovers. Thank you again Eileen and Shirley for making our Christmas at Thornley House Extra Special !

Room Tip: Every Room is delightful, with Stunning Views.
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  • Stayed December 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Danielgarden, Owner at Thornley House, responded to this review, September 8, 2012
I,m so pleased you enjoyed christmas with the cats and away from the christmas raszmataz. I think Lots of people want to get away from obligatory celebrations with family and so here it,s a peceful affair. I'm delighted you are coming again this Christmas

from eileen
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Montelimar, France
1 review
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 27, 2011

Staying at Thornley House is like going back home. Eileen and Shirley make you really welcome and look after you as if you're part of the family.The house, the countryside, the cats, the breakfasts and now the donkeys all add to the great time we always have there. My favourite room is the one with the Art Deco bathroom - wonderful! Can't wait to go back.

Terence

Room Tip: Room with the Art Deco bathroom
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  • Stayed September 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Danielgarden, Owner at Thornley House, responded to this review, September 8, 2012
I, m so glad you and Jacques are regular visitors here and I look forward to seeing you next week

from eileen
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Manchester, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
64 reviews 64 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
34 helpful votes 34 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 21, 2011

What a great place this is. Eileen and Shirley were very welcoming and friendly. Muffins in the afternoon and wine after returning from the pub were fab as was the really good breakfasts. The real attraction is however the way that Eileen makes you feel at home and regales you with stories about her really interesting life and travels. And those cats !!! The setting is perfect and I would defy anyone not to be swept along by the characters and character of thornley house and its gardens. We were here for 2 nights... not long enough. We will be back !! .

  • Stayed October 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Danielgarden, Owner at Thornley House, responded to this review, September 8, 2012
I,m so glad you liked the cats. A new one arrives next week

from eileen
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Thornley House

Address: Thornley Gate NE47 9NH, England
Location: United Kingdom > England > Northumberland > Thornley Gate
Amenities:
Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly )
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 B&Bs / Inns in Thornley Gate
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Thornley House 3*
Number of rooms: 3
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Thornley House Bed & Breakfast A B&B for lovers of fine cats and fine gardens.This beautiful country house is surrounded by a large garden with its own tree lined drive, a field and woodland where pheasants nest and rabbits roam.It is 1 mile out of Allendale village and 9 miles south of the historic market town of Hexham. It stands in an area of outstanding natural beauty.For those who enjoy walking and bird watching, there are many interesting and spectacular walks. Maps are provided and guided walks are sometimes available.Hadrian's Wall is only 20 minutes drive away, whilst Beamish Museum, Kielder Water and the stately homes of Wallington Hall and Cragside ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Thornley House Hotel Hexham

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