The Forge

Don't worry, there's always next year! And we have lots of fun stuff planned in the coming months...

October half term is usually one of our favourite weeks of the year when we make the tents super cosy, embrace the autumn evenings and have one last hurrah with our guests. Unfortunately this year that wasn't to be.... fair to say that it has been a rollercoaster season to say the least! After months of waiting and waiting we were finally able to reopen our gates on 11th July and our feet barely touched the ground until we were forced to close again on the 1st October. It was a whirlwind of a summer with all our tents completely booked out, and a very long waiting list for people wanting to come and stay. We were also thrilled to received the TripAdvisor Traveller's Choice award in the middle of all this. We’d just like to extend an enormous thank you to everyone who has helped us achieve this by staying with us this summer and writing lovely reviews - this has made our recovery from lockdown so much easier. Plus, a heartfelt sorry to anyone who we were unfortunately unable to accommodate this time around – rest assured will do everything we can to welcome you to The Forge next time. Here’s a quick round up of what we’ve been up to plus lots of things to look forward to in the coming months…

Drewyn – our communal cabin

One of the few upsides of lockdown was that we were finally able to finish our lovely communal cabin, which now boasts a newly-felted pool table (complete with new balls), a new table tennis table, a fully-equipped catering kitchen, not to mention the set up for a new onsite shop, which we will be opening fully in 2021. We will be stocking lots of local produce and crafts, plus bushcraft ‘essentials’ (!!) including axes, knives, fire steels and cast-iron cooking equipment for those all-important campfire feasts! With its high roof and wide-open doors at the front, it has proven to be a great space for some socially distanced fun over the summer. And the mighty log burner has come into its own on the slightly chillier days too.

Retreats

We were thrilled to launch a series of retreats this September, including our Wild Wellness Retreat with Adventure Tours UK, designed to help you switch off from the modern world and reconnect back with nature. With storytelling around the campfire, lots of outdoor yoga, stand up paddle boarding, and foraging, not to mention some seriously tasty, wholesome food, our guests definitely looked pretty zen by the time they left! We also ran our second Trail Running Camp which, despite some Covid curve balls and our coach, Tim Higginbottom, being unable to actually attend in person, still proved to be a highly enjoyable experience with some spectacular self-guided trail runs, 1:1 coaching (via Zoom!) and a tailored yoga session for runners. We will be putting on lots more retreats like this in 2021 so stay tuned to our website and social channels for more details.

Full site bookings

We have seen a massive increase in people booking out our whole site for friends and family, which has been a very effective way to navigate the rules around social distancing and group parties. Staying firmly within the rule of a maximum of 30 people meeting outside, our site has allowed groups to enjoy themselves and really make the place their own, creating their own mini-festival vibe! We have put together a package for full site bookings which includes all the accommodation, plus optional catering and bushcraft activities – click here for more details or get in touch directly if you are interested in booking out the whole space.

Bluebell Corner

We were absolutely delighted to be accepted onto the hallowed books of Canopy and Stars at the start of the summer and it has been a joy to see our guests finally enjoying the space that we took so long to get ready! Designed specifically for two adults, our vintage gypsy caravan and log cabin both have log burners and are super cosy, meaning that we can continue to welcome guests all year round. We have everything crossed that we will be able to start taking bookings again from 10th November. Check here for our winter availability.

Winter bushcraft courses

There are also other opportunities for you to visit The Forge over the winter months, lockdowns permitting!. We will be running bushcraft courses throughout the winter at The Forge through our partner business, the Wild Bushcraft Company. As well as our ever-popular Knife Making course on the 27th-30th March, we will also be running four sessions of our day-long Whole of the Deer course, which teaches you everything you could possibly need to know about deer and wild venison! Sign up online through the Wild Bushcraft Company.

Thanks for reading and again a massive thank you for your support this year – we could not have kept The Forge up and running without you. One final, tiny request... if you have stayed with us this summer and had a few moments to write us a review on Google, Facebook or TripAdvisor we would be hugely grateful – as a small business we need all the help we can get to see us through whatever lies ahead.

Posted: 26.10.20

From the moment we drove in we knew we’d struck gold for the next 3 nights. What an amazing off grid location. Sheena met us on arrival and showed us our new ‘home’, and was on hand for anything we needed during our stay. Everything you could possibly need is catered for. We took advantage of cooking outside every evening, using the fire lighting technique tips from Ed, whilst soaking up the sundown. It was just the getaway we needed in these crazy times. Jamie and Sheena run an incredible escape, we will most definitely be back!

Nikki, Southampton, September 2020

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