An Edwardian Guest House, the closest accommodation to the dramatic Valley of Rocks
What inspired you to run The Denes Guest House in Lynton, North Devon?
We felt the need for a change after years of commuting in the Thames Valley. John was working as a Director of an advertising agency, with the hours and commitment that entails. Susan was working in an ‘inner city’ school teaching Food Technology, this work became more challenging by the day. It was time to break away, time for a change, for a place in the country where we could be our own bosses and appreciate the beauty of the natural world.
The Denes Guest House, Lynton and Exmoor National Park was a natural fit. We fell in love with The Denes, at first sight, the building has real character and our love and appreciation of the Edwardian era were fulfilled within the building. The Denes is on the edge of town, so the closest accommodation to the Valley of Rocks, yet only a few minutes to Lynton centre for cafes, restaurants and shops.
What makes a stay at The Denes so special?
The exterior exudes a unique style which matches the style of Lynton Town Hall, and many other buildings in Lynton, they were funded by Sir George Newnes and built by Bob Jones hence the similarity. Once inside the Edwardian villa that is The Denes you are greeted by period terracotta tiled flooring, stained glass and original woodwork. The house has been referred to by our guests as; ‘a very English house‘ or even a ‘Marple-esque house‘ as in Agatha Christies Miss Marple.
Each guest room is tastefully decorated with its own distinctive style, all guest bedrooms retain their original fireplaces, though none are working! Some rooms retain other features such as original wooden conduit (Lynton & Lynmouth were the first towns in the World to have Hydro Electricity), you may also find a wooden bell push but I’m afraid we will not come running as they were disconnected some years ago!
Our breakfasts get great reviews, guests really appreciate the options on offer and Susan loves to cook the perfect breakfast, this is served in our Edwardian dining room looking out on huge pines. All our food is locally sourced where possible, indeed the butcher used to be the ‘village’ butcher for many years, the eggs are free-range Devon eggs. There is Lynton Honey and Lynton-made Marmalade to top off your toast! Gluten-free items are always available, and vegetarian and vegan diets are catered for.
Arrive between 4-6 pm, we will serve you tea and home-made victoria sponge on arrival (again great reviews). The dining room also houses our extensive library of books, games and a range of DVDs.
“When the day’s activity is done Lynton has a wonderful selection of restaurants from fish and chips to Spanish, Eclectic Mediterranean, pub food and a lovely 20-minute walk to a Thai restaurant. We love our restaurants, you will too.”
What are your favourite things to do in Lynton & Lynmouth?
Walking up Snowball has to be one of the best walks or just walking into the Valley of Rocks. To walk up Snowball just cross the road, through the gate, walk up the hill, follow the signs for ‘Iron Age Hill Fort’ and a woodland hill walk will turn into one of the most spectacular views on Exmoor. Wales across the channel, Foreland Point to the East and the Valley of Rocks, Woody Bay, Heddon’s Mouth and The Great Hangman the highest sea cliff in England to the West.
Once you have taken all this in you have a choice to walk to the Valley of Rocks or take a path down to the town centre. The Valley of Rocks is a must at sunset, colours reflected over the sea can be stunningly dramatic. A walk to Watersmeet is also a must, the path follows the East Lyn to Watersmeet where the National Trust has a perfectly situated tearoom in the most idyllic setting.
If you would like to see a current release movie Lynton has a cinema, the smallest town in England with a full-time cinema, we will book the cinema or any of the above for you.