It’s the perfect anonymous little resting place with beautiful views of the Golden Valley to ease away pre-wedding stresses or for honeymooners.There isn’t a chain store in sight, only some cute unfussy pubs, a tiny church and quaint village shops selling basics and lots of friendly villagers offering advice on cycling and hiking routes. Driving though the tiny ancient village of Ewyas Harold and past an open cow shed, we arrive at Hurst Green, a gorgeous red-brick, detached three-bedroom cottage on a quiet country road.
We arrive to cakes, wine and cream teas left for us in the kitchen and settle down on the plumpy sofa. The house itself is pretty, and set on two floors with country florals, fireplace, sash-windows, patterned rugs and lots of vintage furnishings. Bedrooms are countrified with large beds stacked with fluffy towels and a flatscreen, DVD player and classic DVDs for when it’s too wet outside.The owner has thoughtfully left a landline connected to the house (a rarity with holiday lets) in case our mobile signals are too weak and there’s powerful wifi in all the rooms.
Plus, our kitchen has everything needed to cook up a mean Sunday roast. Family-mooners are welcome; you can sleep up to six people, there are three bathrooms and lots of space for kids.
The Courtyard Theatre is must for family-mooners, (or upmarket hens) and has a fantastic artsy bar scene filed with local thesps. We watched an outstanding reworking of Beauty and The Beast by writer Lyndsay Maples. Head to Hurst Green for your honeymoon, for sure. But go again for your Christmas break, a romantic weekend and especially for those marvellous castles and the most restorative sleep ever.The local farmer gifts us his personal National Trust and English Heritage catalogues and we get stuck in right away, visiting Skenfrith Castle, Grosmond Castle, Longtown Castle and Goodrich Castle – all are within 20 minutes of each other and are hands on 13th century history lessons. Ross on Wye and Abergavenny are 20 minute drives, and Hereford and Hereford Cathedral which houses the Mappa Mundi (the famous medieval map of the world) is close by.