AD – Gifted
I’m fairly certain my Dad harnessed the idea of glamping before it was even a thing! Back in the 80s, when we used to go camping in our trailer tent, he would furnish our tent with carpet, making us the talk of the tents amongst the various children we befriended.
Thirty years later, I finally got my first taste of the real thing, which was a little more refined but still brought back great memories of outdoor living and waking to cold toes and sunshine through the canvas.
Home Farm Glamping is a lovely retreat, close enough to London to escape to on the Northern or Jubilee lines, but far enough from everyday life to feel like its own little bubble. They have a mix of bell tents and yurts, all well spaced so you have the requisite privacy and freedom but with a communal barn and eating area where there is a great sense of community living.
Camping with two young children, like doing anything with two young children, is never straightforward so although we didn’t actually need any of the tent paraphernelia we still turned up for our one night’s stay looking like we might be setting up for a week. Thankfully, you can drive to your tent to set up or borrow a handy wheelbarrow to transport your worldly goods – that’s probably as close to feeling like I’m at a festival as I’m going to get!
You actually need very little for your stay apart from some clothes, food and a torch. The tents come equipped with a double bed, children’s beds, cosy bedding, drawers and trinkets on the inside. Then outdoors, there are solar powered lights, decking, table and chairs, a BBQ and a firepit. You pick up your box of cutlery, pans and tableware from the barn and matches, bbq kits and wood are also provided.
The bathroom facilities are clean and refined – rather than the usual communal camping toilets, there are separate bathrooms homed in wooden cabins, complete with a heated towel rail, nice soap and floors you don’t mind standing on in bare feet!
I loved the ease of it, while it not feeling like it was too easy, if you know what I mean. There is a certain sense of satisfaction in building a fire and cooking outdoors, while still knowing that you can sip your wine on your decking and slip under a cosy duvet at the end of the evening.
We had a lovely time cooking smores over the firepit and listening to the kids perform shows on a ukele with a boy they befriended from a neighbouring tent. The next morning, we picked up a thermos of boiling water from the barn for a cup of tea – I’m glad I didn’t have to work out how to boil water on the BBQ – and enjoyed the soft sunrise.
There are further communal cooking facilities you can use and every Thursday during Summer there is a supper club under the big oak tree. You can also hire Home Farm Glamping for hen parties, weddings or corporate retreats.
We really enjoyed our stay and I think it would be particuarly good for anyone who is new to camping or wants an easy, rural retreat with a few home comforts.