These photos provide indisputable proof of previous reviewers comments
Dirt under beds
Ridiculous dog bed provided for extra seating
Heavily stained sofa
Having read previous reviews I can't believe this is the same place.
I will start with the good (don't worry this won't take long)
Yes it is on a farm and there are friendly animals you can pet. In the book you can pay £5 for the privilege OR you can walk up to the fence and they come and say hello, which is free.
Dave the farmer welcomed us when we arrived and he was very friendly.
Now for the reality...
The Smithy sleeps 6 but paradoxically only seats 4. The sofa only has room for 4 and although the photos show a bean bag we were provided with a large dog bed for the other two to sit on. Which may be a blessing as the sofa was covered in stains - presumably because the dining table only fits 5.
The kitchen claims to be fully equipped but we struggled to find what we needed. Utensils are a rarity, for example instead of a spatula we had to use a salad fork.
There is no shower only a bath tub with a shower fitting attached to the mixer taps. There is no shower curtain hence the bathroom gets a deluge after each wash, the warped laminate flooring reflects this fact (though it was poorly fitted to start with). Hot water is limited, especially when there are many of you hoping for a wash. There is an electric heater which provides approximately 6" of hot water if you want a bath. The tongue and groove wooden wall has exposed nail heads sticking out and looks altogether a very shoddy job. Above the bath where the tiles end and before the ceiling starts there is a gap which has been filled with a scabby bit of plaster board, which overall finishes the general "it'll do" attitude which permeates the place.
There is nowhere to hang your clothes up except a half wardrobe in the downstairs bedroom. Ideal only if you are 4' tall or below. We had to improvise and hang our clothes from the banisters, which is part of the cooking area and so our clothes were infused with cooking smells.
As to the issue of the stifling heat I agree with the other reviewers. The main bed rooms are upstairs in the rafters and as hot air rises inevitably it's sweltering up there, though to be honest the main room isn't much better.
Privacy in the main bedrooms is provided by curtains only, sadly these are ordinary curtains and have not been specially fitted to the triangular shape of the alcove. thus there are two large gaps in the bottom two corners and therefore no real privacy at all.
It is impossible to stand upright in the main bedrooms due to the slope of the roof and you are forced to hunch over to get about. The duvet for the bed is so small that with two people lying in bed the edges don't come down to the sides. The upstairs just felt dirty with a mouldy smell and under the bed showed clear signs of never, or at best very rarely, being cleaned.
In the ceiling of the main room there were loose electrical wires hanging down and in the lights not all the bulbs were working.
There are clothes washing facilities in the shed, however you are expected to pay extra to use it. When you have payed so much already I felt this was very cheeky. To use the pool it's £5 for your group for an hour.
Outside the "cottage" was a open space where all cottages had a bench and BBQ...which means that we were kept up all night by our neighbours drinking until 1am.
It's shoddily built and furnished, you are very poorly provided for and there is so much wrong with this place we couldn't wait to go home. Gave it one star only because there isn't a lower option.
This is a wonderful place for anyone to stay. I had found this place on TripAdvisor back in January. Even though it did not have many reviews, we took the chance and stayed here. I will tell you the good and bad about the place.
We arrived to tea and biscuits in our room, which was very nice. Tom the owner came along a short while after to see how everything was.
When I walked into the room I was a little nervous, because 2 of the rooms were up steep stairs. I have a 3 year old and I was very worried she would fall down them if she came up to us in the night. Thankfully we had no falls.
I loved it here because of all the animals on the property. There are donkeys, horses, sheep, goats and chickens. All of which you can pet. We would go and visit the donkeys which my 3 year old named Jackpot and Kiki. There are also numerous play areas around the property, including big and small trampolines. There is a swimming pool which you can rent out by the hour for £5. We did not get to use the pool. We did ask if it is heated and Tom mentioned that it is heated overnight, so the best time to go swimming is as soon as it opens at 9.00am, so that way it would still be warm for a couple of hours.
There are 2 washing machines and 2 dryers right next to the unit (The Smythy) where we stayed. They cost £1 each per hour, which is a great price. Lechlade is a lovely little town. Not too far away you have The Cotswold Wildlife Park. We did not go there this time, but I have been there numerous times before. That is a great day out.
Now for the few things I did not like about the unit. First of all there is no freezer in this unit. We stayed in The Smythy for 7 days, we travelled around for 2 weeks and then came back for 11 more nights. We really needed a freezer during our time there. There is a fridge, oven, microwave, toaster and kettle in the unit.
The next issue that was not really a big deal for me, but was for my husband and 17 year old daughter, was the shower, or lack of. It is only a hand held shower which I did know about, but you cannot hang it up like a regular shower. So you really cannot take a shower with it, but thankfully you have a bath.
My last complaint and this was the biggest problem for those of us that stayed upstairs in the loft areas, was how hot it was. We had some really nice hot days during our visit and the loft areas get really really hot. The room we stayed in had a tiny window. But the loft where my daughter stayed did not. We did ask Tom if he had any fans but he did not. One other problem with the lofts are there is no where to plug anything in. We were going to buy fans ourselves and then just give them to my mum and dad when we left, but there were no sockets to plug them into up in the loft areas. They need some sort of cooling system for the loft areas, as it was miserable a couple of nights because of how hot it was. If The Smythy had a freezer and a fan in the lofts I would have rated this 5 stars. Even though I had a couple of complaints about the room, I would stay there again in a heartbeat. I loved the area, and the owners are wonderful, they are there for you if you need them.
What a find !!!! We visited the barns and stayed at the Smythy in OCT 2015. It was amazing. So relaxing, back to basics, fun, happy and just a perfect holiday. I would really highly recommend this holiday for anyone who has children. There was so much for them to do in a safe environment. The woods were amazing, the trampolines excellent and the fire pit where we roasted marshmallows most evening's after 6 was something my children will never forget. The sheep in the field kept us company whilst we sat round the open fire. Just a perfect holiday. Thanks Kirsty and Josh.
A really lovely place to stay if you have youngish children! Lots for them to do, trampolines, tennis, swings, the friendly animals to meet, football, fishing and obviously the swimming pool, all in a quiet and very safe environment. This led to us being relaxed too which isn't always possible when you go somewhere new with 3 children aged 12, 11 and 9! The cottage itself had everything we needed for a week and the kids liked the loft style bedrooms especially. We will certainly look at staying in The Smythy again, as we had a wonderful week here and it was well priced for a family of 5. It was also our first time visiting this area but we will definitely come back as it's an incredibly beautiful part of the country.
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