I’ve been away for a few days with my wife and daughter and had the good fortune to stay at Capel Courtyard in Kent. It calls itself a B & B, but this is no ordinary B & B, surpassing all my expectations. It was booked for me, and although when told about it I nodded in agreement and said how wonderful it looked, I didn’t really register how magnificent it would be. Dating back to the mid 1800 hundreds, it has been renovated lovingly by the present owners over twenty years. Early in the building work they had to have the courtyard (as shown in the photo) lifted to reconstruct the drains. It’s truly superb and must be one of the best B & Bs in the country. An excerpt from Capel Courtyard’s website follows:
‘High ceilings, gothic arches, and lots of windows, create a gloriously light and open feel, offering a multitude of differing views of the courtyard and surrounding gardens. Capel Courtyard is principally a peaceful home from home, rather than a hotel. In keeping with this ethos, we do not have TV’s in our bedrooms or reception spaces. WiFi is however available everywhere, and for the less technologically focused there are books and games.
The Courtyard dates from 1860 and originally comprised the subsidiary buildings – stables, cart sheds, coachman’s house and chauffeur’s cottage – to a grand mansion built by the Austen family (relatives of the famous novelist Jane Austen) and designed in Italian gothic style by Thomas Wyatt.’ Capel Courtyard website.
Using this as our base, we spent the time walking in the Kent countryside, visiting delightful gardens, old oust houses, an English vineyard producing excellent wine, and three good restaurants, whose impressive and rigorous Covid 19 precautions made us feel safe.
It’s surprising how a few days away in a beautiful setting, good company and food, and with interesting places to visit, revitalises and relaxes you, but it did that and more for the three of us. It beats foreign travel and Covid and quarantine worries!
My new book, Otto and Frankie, is now available in paperback and e-book. It’s different from anything else I’ve written and took almost three years in the making.
It’s about a dying man’s fight against injustice, his wife’s unusual affair, and the love from his long-lost daughter. I’m told it’s a compelling read.