Augill Castle

Nr Kirby Stephen, Cumbria & The Lake District, United Kingdom
Book from GBP Book from £171 per night

Augill Castle

Nr Kirby Stephen, Cumbria & The Lake District, United Kingdom

A fabulous folly castle in Eden Valley, complete with turrets, grand bedrooms, restaurant, and 20 acres of grounds - perfect for family adventures

A fabulous folly castle in Eden Valley, complete with turrets, grand bedrooms, restaurant, and 20 acres of grounds - perfect for family adventures

Take two feuding brothers, add in a small fortune, stir vigorously, allow to simmer and hey presto! - you get a folly castle. Augill was built in 1841 by John Bagot Pearson in a bid to outdo his younger sibling. He succeeded in some style, commissioning the castle as a weekend haunt in which to entertain his friends. It is a triumph of vanity over common sense: turrets, mullioned windows, castellated towers, wonderfully ornate lattice windows - the usual castle fare. It is also a trompe-l’œil of sorts: the house is mostly one room deep.

A longish gravel drive leads up from the lane. Lawns and sheep-filled meadows encircle you, beyond the Pennines rise majestically. Inside you find enormous rooms, creaking floorboards, vibrant colours and an easy-going house-party feel. The music room - now the restaurant - has an open fire, a grand piano, and serves contemporary small plates and daily afternoon teas with a modern twist. The décor is ‘country house’, reassuringly traditional, but without the chintz.


  • An impressive folly castle with imperious countryside all around
  • Superb for families, with lots of large rooms and handy baby equipment, plus loads of activities on site
  • A relaxed, easy-going feel - owners Simon and Wendy are friendly and present
  • Large shabbily authentic bedrooms and good home-cooked fare
  • Some of Britain's most unspoilt walking; the Pennine Way and Coast to Coast footpaths pass close by


  • Couples wanting a grown-up break may want to avoid booking during the school holidays
  • Room interiors are more shabby chic than perfectly polished
  • No evening meals on Monday & Tuesday; be sure to give a few hours' warning if you'd like afternoon tea
  • It's not cheap and the extras can soon add up
  • WiFi and phone signal can be patchy, but you're here for a getaway!
World Favourite Family Hideaway

    Best rooms for families

    So many options. The Orangery Family Suite sleeps up to 4; The Stable House Estate House offers more privacy and separate bedrooms for parents and kids. The Little Castle House can take a child on an extra bed. Interconnecting Derwent & Raisebeck is a good option for families with older children. Book the whole place out for a big family gathering!

    Parents should know...

    Plenty of antiques to mind and staircases that aren't gated; this is a unique old house and hasn't been 'health and safety'd' to death, perish the thought.
  • Baby cots
  • High chairs
  • Nappy disposal unit
  • Disposable changing mats
  • Nappy cream and talcum powder
  • Baby bubble bath

Some equipment may need to be requested in advance

Baby monitor available.

Very flexible when it comes to eating. The kids' menu has classics like bangers and mash or pasta with tomato sauce, and chocolate brownie or trifle for dessert. Plastic bowls, plates, cups and toddler cutlery are provided when you order something for your child. There is also a small galley kitchen in the main building with a fridge, microwave, kettle and 2 hobs. This was brilliant for us as we could store and heat up milk for bedtime and it would be perfect making very simple snacks - handy if you have early risers who can't wait until breakfast.

  • Teddy bear on bed
  • Den, playground and games room
  • Trampoline
  • Tennis court
  • Toys for all ages
  • Children's books and DVDs
  • Castle to explore
  • Resident animals: hens, dogs
  • Dressing up clothes
  • Mini beast safaris
  • Hiking and mountaineering
  • Lake District fun: kayaking, swimming and sailing
  • Via Ferrata at Honister Slate Mine
  • Go Ape

Great for...

Great Outdoors
  • Boutique Hotel
  • 12 bedrooms
  • Restaurant and bar
  • All ages welcome
  • Open all year
  • Pool
  • Spa Treatments
  • Beach Nearby
  • Babysitting
  • Creche / Kids Club
  • Car recommended
  • Parking
  • Pet Friendly
  • Disabled Access
  • Restaurants Nearby
  • WiFi
  • Air Conditioning
  • Guest Lounge
  • Terrace
  • Garden
  • Gym
  • Daily Maid Service
  • Towels & Bedlinen
  • Tennis Court
  • Electric car charger


Augill Castle’s rooms range from romantic doubles to self-contained cottages, converted from the old gatehouse and stables. Wherever you stay, expect thick swathes of curtain, old armoires, four-posters dressed in crisp linen, vintage luggage and the odd wall hanging. Don’t expect lots of chintz. Instead, you might find an Indonesian blow pipe, an old gramophone player or a wardrobe in a turret.

Those in the main castle are the most traditional: on our first visit we stayed in Appleby, a large room with rich red walls at the end of the long corridor. It has creaky wooden steps down to a big bathroom with a four-poster tub (!) and a brilliant rainshower. We also loved the claw-foot tub in Derwent & Raisebeck.

The old Orangery rooms offer huge arched windows; Greystoke’s pretty doorway is enchanting.

The converted outhouses are more modern and have added privacy. On our most recent visit, our family stayed in the Little Castle Estate House, a two-storey mini house that is great for families - you get a bedroom with a brass bed, two bathrooms, a small kitchenette, and a small gravelled garden terrace outside.

Features include:

  • Bathrobes
  • WiFi


Dining at Augill takes place in The Music Room, a grand space set in what was once the castle’s ballroom. Dinner (served Wednesday-Sunday) is a contemporary small plates format, with a focus on locally-sourced produce from the Eden Valley combined with flavours of the world. We tucked into a small but tasty starter of pickled beetroot, goats cheese mousse and red onion marmalade, followed by a delicious loin of cod with mussels, clams, crushed new potatoes, spinach, and a white wine and garlic sauce. Dessert was a classic creme brulee.

Afternoon tea is also available here every day until 5pm (with or without bubbles). They've modernised it by re-imagining old favourites, swapping out finger sandwiches for paninis or mini tartlets. Of course, scones with jam and clotted cream come as standard.

After our meal, we relaxed at the castle’s Great British Bar (in the Conservatory), which tends to stock drinks from independent British producers. Simon and Wendy will happily recommend something for you based on your tastes - maybe a cocktail or two. We enjoyed a delicious Lemon Bon Bon made with toffee vodka.

In the morning, our breakfast took a good hour to devour: fruit and porridge, freshly-squeezed orange juice, homemade breads and croissants, Augill Eggs Florentine and Full English with Cumberland sausage and bacon.

Features include:

  • Bar
  • Breakfast
  • Communal dining
  • Kids' meals
  • Restaurant


  • The Lake District, the Yorkshire Dales and the Northumbrian National Park are all on your doorstep; Hadrian’s Wall is also close
  • The Pennines lie behind you, so follow ancient footpaths and walk your socks off
  • Alternatively, stay at the castle and play croquet on the lawn or tennis at the back
  • Afternoon teas are available daily, and are particularly tempting when taken in the garden during summer
  • Catch a movie in the 12-seat cinema - you can buy popcorn, too!

Activities on site or nearby include:

  • Golf
  • Hiking
  • Historical sites
  • Horse riding
  • Tennis

Best Time to go

Any time of year is good here - enjoy crackling fires and bracing walks in winter, views and strolls in the gardens in summer. The lakes and fells are always stunning. If you want to avoid the traffic, give the summer school holidays a miss.

Our Top Tips

If you (or the kids) need some downtime or want to while away a rainy day, settle down with a film and some popcorn in the cosy 12-seat cinema.
Kid Friendly:


Augill Castle is located 6 miles from Kirkby Stephen in Cumbria's Eden Valley. Ten minutes to the south are the Yorkshire Dales and half an hour to the west is the Lake District.

By Air
Teesside International (68km) is 45 minutes’ drive or Newcastle International (125km) is 75 minutes away.

By Car:
Take M6 exit junction 38, then A685 north through Kirkby Stephen. Just before Brough, take right signed South Stainmore; house is signed on left after 1 mile. If you want to hire a car, see our car rental recommendations.

By Train:
The nearest train station is Kirkby Stephen, which is on the Settle-Carlisle line, with the only direct route from Leeds & Carlisle. Darlington, which is on the east coast line, is 50 minutes away & Penrith, which is on the west coast line, is 30 minutes away.

By Bus:
Please note public transport is very limited in this area.

Detailed directions will be sent to you when you book through i-escape.


  • Teesside International 68.0 km MME
  • Newcastle International 125.0 km NCL


  • Beach 70.0 km
  • Shops 3.0 km
  • Restaurant 3.0 km

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