Derbyshire Venues & Accommodation For Every Occasion

March Newsletter

Welcome to our March Newsletter. The nights are getting lighter and even though the weather still seems a little chilly there is still plenty to keep you busy in the Peak District. A walk around Kedleston Hall and Park is a fantastic day out, why not treat you Mum for a special mothers day weekend and take advantage of our special offers. See how we developed one of our most luxurious cottages - Sunshine Cottage - from a simple barn to a five star property with inviting bubbling hot tub! Next week we are releasing our Reduced School Holiday Offer so keep your eyes peeled to take advantage of the limited booking period.

Late Deals for Weddings and Events at Knockerdown Cottages

"Special Offer" Late Dates for the Weekends of the 6th & 27th of June and 4th & 11th July 2014

Knockerdown Cottages is the perfect place for a weekend wedding, reunion, party, celebration or get together, where you can have all your friends and family staying in one location for 3 nights and enjoy the celebrations without having to pack up and rush off in the morning. A group of traditionally stone built self-catered cottages each sleeping a maximum of 90 people are all equipped for individual guests needs so they can also take time to relax in their own space.

Nestled among the cottages is a central leisure building with games room, indoor heated swimming pool, sauna, spa and two function rooms. Our own little path leads across the road to a traditional country pub serving local beers and home cooked meals. We also have a children’s play area and large meadow for games and activities to keep the more active members of your group busy! The surrounding countryside or nearby Carsington reservoir is perfect for a Friday afternoon ramble or quiet Sunday morning walk to clear the head.  


 Our smaller function room, The Carsington Room, can seat up to 20 guests around one table or would cater for a buffet for more guests, spilling out into the adjacent Games Room if required. The Brackendale Room can seat up to 100 guests and a marquee extension can be added if necessary. Patio doors lead out onto a terrace perfect for a drinks reception with stunning countryside views. Both our function rooms have tables and chairs provided.


Comfort and Luxury for all of your Guests 

Our 16 cottages combining modern luxury with a traditional country feel can accommodate between 2 and 11 guests each. We provide linen and towels in all our cottages and high chairs and cots are available on request, so you can really make the most of your special weekend with all your friends and family.
Perhaps a visit to the on site spa for the ladies which offers a variety of treatments for that little extra pampering whilst the men relax in the pub next door with a pint of locally brewed ale.
The party can continue on Sunday with a breakfast BBQ or pool party brunch before having to get back to the grindstone!


If you are interested in booking an event in the next few months or even next year if you can wait that long, please book a visit to our venue to have a look around and see what we can offer you... Call the events team on 01629 540525 or email us

What's on in March - Craft & Gift Fairs, Royal Shrovetide Football, Walks, Racing & Mothers Day



1st, 2nd, 8th& 9thMarch - Bakewell Craft & Gift Fair

To find out more information click here.....

3rd& 4thMarch - Waking Up The House at Kedleston Hall

To find out more information click here....

4th& 5th March Shrove Tuesday & Ash Wednesday– Royal Shrovetide Football Game in the streets of Ashbourne

To find out more information click here....

12thMarch- The Ramblers Group Walk 10 miles around Chatsworth Circular

To find out more information click here....

15thMarch- Midlands Grand National at Uttoxeter Race Course

To find out more information click here....

26thMarch- The Ramblers Group Walk 6 miles around Chatsworth Circular

To find out more information click here....

29thMarch - Super Saturday at Uttoxeter Race Course

To find out more information click here....

29thMarch – Mothers Day Family Activities – Kedleston Hall

To find out more information click here....


P.S Don't forget to make a note of Gainsborough Retreats special offers for Mothers Day on our "Special Offer" page.


Site News - History of Sunshine Cottage



The accommodation provided is to the highest standards combining modern luxury with a traditional country feel. The Cottage has a spacious ground floor with under floor heating, perfect for getting together with friends and family. The fully fitted kitchen has a large range cooker, central island sink unit, dishwasher, washer dryer and leads out to a south facing morning terrace complete with hot tub, perfect for those cold country evenings! The central dining room has an extendable table seating up to 12 people and is open to the large lounge area with original feature beams and brickwork. The lounge is centred around a log burner and provides access to an evening terrace with stunning views over the rolling Derbyshire countryside. 


To the first floor the sleeping accommodation is suitable for both families and couples, with three of the bedrooms being able to be set out as double or twin rooms. ‘The purple suite’ with original feature king post oak beam also has a single day bed with pull out single bed, perfect for families. Off the master suite a luxurious bathroom with two-person bath provides the ideal place to retreat. The two additional bedrooms to the first floor both have en suite shower rooms with large fixed screen showers. The second floor comprises ‘the blue suite’ with separate bathroom, again with two-person bath. All bathrooms have under floor heating, heated towel rails and anti-mist mirrors. 


Sunshine Cottage was refurbished during 2008 when it started out as a disused barn and only the roof had been renewed! The end kitchen wall had to be underpinned before anything could be done to the upper floors and the whole property had to be newly wired and plumbed. Underfloor heating was added to the ground floor and the pillar in the lounge was salvaged from an old Mill to hold up the ceiling. The first floor was not seen for the first 4 weeks of the work as no-one could access it, and once the development was a little further on the baths had to be lifted up before the stairs were fitted due to their size - so we ask our guests to please be careful with them as we can't get them out again! The original design hit a problem when the middle bedroom was not big enough for a double bed so our very clever joiner managed to fit the bed into area above the stairs hence why you can only get in and out one side!!

We hope you enjoy using and staying in Sunshine Cottage as much as we enjoyed refurbishing it and hope it provides you with somewhere to make many happy memories with your friends and family!


Local Recommended Business - Hair, Make-up & Cakes by Kayleigh Carr

Cakes by Kayleigh Carr

Kayleigh individually designs all of her cakes; she decorates and picks colours to suit your themes. Make your cake stand out by personalising and enhancing your cake with handmade beautiful sprays of sugar flowers, models, animals or decorative toppers. Any colour, theme or occasion, whatever your celebration maybe a wedding, birthday, or anniversary Kayleigh can create the perfect bespoke cake for you.
All cakes are done by quotation depending on size, style, and cake flavour.











Hair & Make Up by Kayleigh Carr

Wedding’s - Make your day extra special, relax in comfort and let Kayleigh's team come to you to create the perfect look for your special day. Whether your hair is up, down, curly or straight with Kayleigh's expertise she can create a stunning individual style just for you. Kayleigh has a passion for bridal hair and has over 9 years experience, completing courses with Wella and Vidal Sassoon. Hen Do’s – having a girly night out? Why not start the night early and all get ready together. Kayleigh's team can come and create the glam look for you, ready for your big night!
Special Occasions/Demonstrations – Kayleigh's Team can cater for all your special occasions or maybe you have thought I wish I could do that style with my hair or put your make up on a certain way? Kayleigh can help with a demonstration, so whatever your requirements please do not hesitate to contact Kayleigh for a quote. Discounts available for group bookings.

Contact: Kayleigh
T: 07866 027120



Mad March Special Offers

Mothers Day  - Sunday 30th March

Gainsborough Retreats are offering a 3 night break at our standard prices in one of our farm stone built cottages to cover Mothers Day. Arrive Friday 28th March at 3pm to a treat of champagne & chocolates, add the Spa Offer below for Saturday, Voucher to spend Sunday for Mothers Day lunch and depart relaxed Monday morning at 10am.

At Knockerdown Farm we are offering a voucher for &40 to spend on Sunday at the Knockerdown Inn and at Nether Burrows Farm we are offering a voucher for &80 to spend on Sunday at The Three Horse Shoes. 

All bookings must be for a stay on the specified dates above and the offers cannot be used in conjunction with any other offers.





Brackendale Spa are offering a "Mini Special Package" for Mothers Day.

Mini Manicure, Mini Pedicure, pick me up Facial and a back Massage all for &40 on advanced bookings only.

Booking is advised as  the girls do get busy during weekend and holiday periods.

Please like their facebook page and log into the website for all the latest information and monthly offers.

Tel: 01629 540727                                                                                   


***COMING SOON - Fed up with paying higher prices in School Holidays for your family breaks away? Look out for our limited special offer for reduced School Holiday Prices coming to your inbox next week! ***

March's Recipe of the Month - Crunchy Salsa Cod

Crunchy Salsa Cod

Serves 4, Preparation time 5 minutes, Cooking time 15 minutes


4 chunky skinless white cod fillets (you can use haddock if you prefer)

226g jar of mild salsa

85g grated mature cheddar cheese

1 large avocado, diced

1 lime, juiced

small pack of chopped coriander

50g tortilla chips

rice or salad to serve


1. Heat the oven to 220C or 200C for a fan assisted oven.

2. Arrange the fish in an oven proof dish and spoon the salsa on top and then the cheese.

3. Bake for 15 minutes or until the fish flakes when tested with a knife.

4. Whilst the fish is baking stir the avocado with the lime juice, coriander and some seasoning.

5. Spoon this over the fish when it is cooked and then scatter over the tortilla chips, crushing them as you do so.

6. Serve with rice or salad.

Local Walk of the Month - Kedleston Long Walk


Kedleston Park - Long Walk



Start/Finish - Kedleston Hall car park

Distance - approx 3.2 miles

Circular tour of the park

The walk takes you through the "House of lords" gates, into priest Wood along the edge of the park. Amazing new trees have been planted mainly being oak, ash, beech, hawthorn and hazel. There is also a maze and the Splash Pool to explore. To provide added interest along the walk you will find focal points such as the Hermitage and the Mount. Remember to keep a look out for the hares in the fields at the back of the Hall. For more information about the walk click here....

Special Feature - Kedleston Hall



A Spectacular 18th-century mansion, Take a trip back in time to the 1760s at this spectacular Neo-classical mansion framed by historic parkland. 

Designed for lavish entertaining

Displaying an extensive collection of paintings, sculpture and original furnishings

The Curzon family have lived here since the 12th-century and continue to live at the Hall.  

The Hall was used as a key location for 'The Duchess', the Hollywood blockbuster staring Keira Knightley.

For more history on the hall please click here...