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High Cross Camping Coach and Living Van

England / Bridport, Dorset
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Transport yourself back to days gone by with a truly unique stay at the High Cross Camping Coach and Living Van.

Tucked away in the Dorset countryside, just a couple of miles south of Beaminster, a charming holiday experience awaits.  It's here that you'll find the Camping Coach (a delightful Victorian railway carriage) and the Edwardian Living Van - surely some of the cutest and cosiest accommodation imaginable!

Perfect for couples or a small family, the Camping Coach and Living Van sleep two apiece.  They're set together in their own private garden, surrounded by breath-taking views on every side.  And if there are only two of you visiting, you'll still be treated to optimum privacy - the Living Van is only hired out to guests visiting the Camping Coach, guaranteeing an exclusive break whatever your arrangements may be.

As you arrive, you can't help feeling a sense of excitement upon first seeing these beautiful hideaways.  The Camping Coach - the larger of the two - exudes old world charm.  Its faithful restoration is evident in its brown and cream exterior, and gold lettering along the side.  You can just imagine this beautiful carriage whirring along the tracks of the London, Brighton and South Coast Railway, transporting passengers over a century ago.

Once you've turned the chunky brass door handle, you're invited to ‘climb on board into another era'.  Inside the Camping Coach, you'll find reminders of the carriage's past everywhere, from the original leather window straps to the luggage racks overhead.  However, you'll also be amazed at its beautiful transformation into this unique living space.

The main living area is heated by an exquisite, art nouveau wood burner from France, and fitted out with a small dining table and plush, blue sofa (reminiscent of a traditional train seat!).  And most ingeniously, this beautiful bench pulls out to become a double bed at night-time. The Camping Coach also has a compact kitchen, fully fitted with a three-ring gas cooker, small fridge, and Belfast sink, and finished with stunning slate worktops.  Next door is the bathroom, complete with a flushing toilet and electric shower.

Extra guests can make their home in the Living Van just metres away; a delight in green, with red wheels and axles, it's a cheery welcome for the weary traveller!  Dating back to 1906, the Living Van once provided accommodation for workmen while mending roads, and would have been pulled by a steam roller.  Today, however, it's permanently positioned with a westward view - perfect for catching sunsets!

Behind the Living Van's stable door, you're greeted by an utterly charming interior, where pale green panelling and pink-and-white curtains (reminiscent of seaside rock!) combine perfectly.  Large enough for adults, cosy enough for children, the Living Van offers a cosy nook for all.  A wood-burning stove keeps the Van beautifully warm, while the dining table and benches seat everyone comfortably - perfect for a game of cards!  Come nightfall, the benches convert into two single beds or one double bed, while all other facilities are shared with the Camping Coach.

On sunny days, your gorgeous garden is the perfect place to relax in a deckchair or enjoy your meals outside.  Beyond the gate, however, more treats await.  Spoil yourself in High Cross' Victorian Dining Carriage, where a professional chef will prepare a First Class Dinner in this First Class salon car!  The Dining Carriage can also be hired for Afternoon Tea, or for a slightly less fancy Second Class Dinner - all served on original South Western china and silverware.

Then of course there's the whole of stunning Dorset to explore, with its many family attractions, historic houses and gardens, and beaches.  The legendary Jurassic Coast is just five miles away - treat yourself to fish and chips at West Bay's popular harbour, try some crab fishing or take a dip in the swimming pool. Further along, Charmouth is ten miles away and is the perfect place to hunt for fossils.  Once you've worked up an appetite, enjoy some local produce at one of Bridport's many restaurants, or sample one of the excellent pubs in and around Beaminster. 

A holiday in this beautiful corner of Britain is always a treat for the soul, but staying at High Cross makes it even more wonderful.  So pull out the stops and make it full steam ahead to the Camping Coach and Living Van!

Things to note

Minimum stay 2 nights, except Friday arrivals Apr-Oct when it is 3 nights, and school holidays which are 3 nights and check-in days on Mon & Fri, well-behaved dogs are permitted on prior arrangement at a cost of £10 per dog per stay.  Coal is provided on arrival, additional coal and disposable BBQ may be purchased. An extra £10 per person per stay is charged for guests using the Living Van to cover laundry.

Tried and tested

"An absolutely lovely place to stay. The railway coach is unique - brilliantly designed for maximum comfort and finished at a high standard. it will definitely get 5 stars on Tripadvisor. Thank you."
September 2016

"Our second stay here, and it will not be our last! We still want to take the camping coach home with us- we can't work out how to do it!! Lovely location, weather, fish and chips, cider, bike rides walks...brilliant."
August 2016

"What a truly idyllic location, the perfect setting to celebrate my birthday along with family. The owners are welcoming, friendly and nothing is too much trouble for them. Really enjoyed the experience. we really enjoyed the meal in the dining saloon, thank you for letting us share it. Enjoyed from start to finish."
July 2016 

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The basics

Region: Bridport, Dorset
Cost (from): £90 per night
Sleeps: 2-4
Bedrooms: 2
Bathrooms: 1
Minimum stay: 2 nights
Property ref: 263

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The camping coach sleeps 4, double bed, private bathroom, bedding & towels provided, fully equipped kitchen, condiments & basic provisions provided, small dining table & chairs, antique stove. The adjacent living van has a table and benches that convert to 2 single beds, wood burning stove. The garden has table, chairs & deckchairs. Free wi-fi, parking for 1 car.

Local activities

Beaches, coastal walks, cycling, horse riding, surfing, hiking, fossil hunting, farms, swannery, scenic railway, caves, museums, Monkey World, castles, manors.

At a glance

  • Victorian Camping Coach and Edwardian Living Van offering self-catering accommodation in Dorset countryside
  • Camping Coach sleeps 2 (double); Living Van sleeps 2 (twin or double) - used for extra guests and not hired out separately
  • Camping Coach also features a kitchen and bathroom with shower
  • Set in private garden, surrounded by wild flower meadows and hills beyond
  • Dogs welcome by prior arrangement
  • Ideal for exploring popular Dorset; 2m south of Beaminster; 5m north of Bridport and Jurassic Coast

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High Cross Camping Coach and Living Van
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