- General Information
- Pre-Booking Information of a General Nature
- Specific Information on our Holiday Properties
- Leisure Suite
- Laundry Room
- Dustbin Room
- Outdoor Facilities
- Additional Information
We have four self-catering properties at Mel House, which is in the centre of our picturesque village complete with village green, duck pond, play area and Pub. These have been converted at various times since the mid-1990s from former farm buildings which, we believe, date back to the early 1800s. Working up our driveway from the road, which passes through the centre of our village, we've named these properties 'Mallard' (former Stables), 'Swift' (former Stables), 'Owl' (former Cart Shed) and 'Granary' (former Granary - surprisingly!). We have our own Leisure Suite - exclusive to Guests - with a heated indoor swimming pool, spa and sauna as well as changing facilities, showers and toilets.
Importantly, immediately prior to our withdrawal from the Scheme three of our four properties - 'Mallard', 'Swift' and 'Owl' - had been independently assessed as 'accessible' to varying degrees under the 'VisitEngland' National Accessible Scheme applicable to self-catering accommodation. We confirm that we have made no changes to our provision of relevant 'facilities, room layout, etc. since that time. If you use the Internet you can read the sort of detail which lay behind achievement of the relevant standards required by clicking the appropriate Links below. If you don't use the Internet we suggest you approach your local Library for help or else request further information from us.
The site we occupy is a level one with a concrete driveway (permitting 'set down' immediately adjacent to the entrances to our wheelchair accessible cottages) along with one large and two smaller parking areas 'serving' the holiday properties. Beyond these properties, the driveway becomes a grass track - leading to a wild flower garden and paddocks plus stabling for those bringing horses with them - which would not be suitable for a wheelchair other than after a dry spell of weather.
Our gardens include a number of sitting-out areas, a walled 'secure' water garden with two ponds (one with fish) linked by an artificial stream.
Our self-catering business trades as a Partnership under the name of 'Let's Holiday', the Partners (who live on-site at Mel House itself) being John and Penny Wicks. It is almost inevitable that you will wish to clarify something further before making a Booking, in which case please don't hesitate to get in touch by email or telephone at any reasonable time, including evenings and weekends. We look forward to welcoming you if you decide you'd like to take a holiday here.
- Our website is listed on a number of 'Directory' or 'Portal' websites.
- The nearest bus stop is within 50 metres of our holiday properties but please note that this service doesn't operate throughout the year.
- Although there is a quiet family-run pub serving good food in the centre of Newton-on-Rawcliffe there is no shop here. This means that it probably isn't practical to consider a holiday here without your own transport. Having said that, the cost of an accessible Taxi to Pickering (nearest town) when shared between, say, four people would be little more than the total cost if using the local bus. Once in Pickering, you will find that there are regular bus services to York (via Malton), Scarborough and Whitby.
- Also in Pickering is the North York Moors Steam Railway which runs for most of the year to Whitby.
- The nearest 'conventional' railway station is 14 miles away at Malton.
- As indicated above, accessible taxis are operated out of both Pickering and Malton.
Mallard is the largest of our properties - it sleeps 6 Guests in 3 Bedrooms, having a total of 5 beds.
Immediately prior to our withdrawal from the Scheme, as referred to earlier, 'Mallard' had been assessed for a number of years as 'M3 - Assisted'[pdf] under the 'VisitEngland' National Accessible Scheme applicable to self-catering accommodation. This means that 'Mallard' is typically suitable for a person who depends on the use of a wheelchair and requires assistance from a Carer - and possibly a hoist - when transferring to and from the wheelchair in a seated position. We confirm that we have made no changes to our provision of relevant 'facilities', room layout, etc. since our withdrawal from the Scheme.
Luggage can be unloaded immediately adjacent to the entrance door prior to parking approximately 40 metres from the property.
The downstairs area is entirely 'accessible' (hence the accreditation referred to above) via an entrance door without a step. It comprises a Kitchen with Dining Area (table can be raised), Sitting Room, accessible Twin Bedroom (1.5 metre turning circle, space for hoist under bed, lowered hanging rail for clothes) and fully tiled Wet Room (support rails, 1.5 metre turning circle, wheeled shower chair, thermostatic taps).
[Notes: 1) The toilet in the Wet Room is 'right transfer'. 2) If required, the settee in the Sitting Room can be converted into a double bed to allow a Carer to sleep downstairs and, as a result, to be within earshot of the accessible Twin Bedroom whilst not actually sleeping in it.]
Upstairs, reached by a short staircase, there is a Double Bedroom, a Twin Bedroom, and a small Bathroom. In places there is partial headroom due to low beams in the eaves.
The accommodation provided by this property is entirely on one level. It sleeps 5 Guests in 3 Bedrooms, having a total of 4 beds.
Immediately prior to our withdrawal from the Scheme, as referred to earlier, 'Swift' had been assessed for a number of years as 'M3 - Independent'[pdf] under the 'VisitEngland' National Accessible Scheme applicable to self-catering accommodation. This means that 'Swift' is typically suitable for a person who depends on the use of a wheelchair and transfers unaided to and from the wheelchair in a seated position. This person may, therefore, be a single independent traveller although the rental rate for this cottage - set at a level which reflects the fact that it accommodates up to 5 Guests - means that such a Booking will probably not be made. We confirm that we have made no changes to our provision of relevant 'facilities', room layout, etc. since our withdrawal from the Scheme.
Luggage can be unloaded immediately adjacent to the ramp which leads to the entrance door prior to parking approximately 15 metres from the property.
The entrance to the cottage is through a threshold-free door at the top of a ramp with a 1:12 incline (1.5 metres wide, with 10cm raised edge and handrail) which leads into a Porch with a 'straight-through run' into the Sitting Room with Dining Area.
One door from the Dining Area leads to the Kitchen. This has one short lowered worktop area, 800mm in length, with a combination microwave placed on it.
A second door opens to a corridor which gives access to the remainder of the accommodation.
It's the single Bedroom (1.5 metre turning circle, space for hoist under the bed, lowered hanging rail for clothes) and the adjacent Wet Room (support rails, 1.5 metre turning circle, wheeled shower chair, thermostatic taps) which, together with the 'access' aspects of the property's Living Areas, have resulted in it being appropriate to award Swift the level of access accreditation referred to above.
[Note: The toilet in the Wet Room is 'left transfer'.]
The Double Bedroom and adjacent small Bathroom should not be regarded as 'accessible'. The Twin Bedroom is not accredited as 'accessible' either; there is a turning circle of just under the minimum 1.5 metres required - it's about 1.2 metres - and the space between the two beds is only a little over 700mm. The clear space opposite the doorway (being at least 1.2 metres) does make it practical to enter the bedroom using a wheelchair, however. As a result, when two Guests using wheelchairs have stayed in Swift this Twin Bedroom has been used by one of them - obviously with some inconvenience, as anticipated at the time of booking the property by those using it in this way.
This Ground Floor apartment is below Granary - our other apartment - and is entirely on one level. It sleeps 4 Guests in 2 Bedrooms, having a total of 3 beds.
Immediately prior to our withdrawal from the Scheme, as referred to earlier, 'Owl' had been assessed for a number of years as 'M1'[pdf] under the 'VisitEngland' National Accessible Scheme applicable to self-catering accommodation. This means that 'Owl' is typically suitable for a person with sufficient mobility to climb a flight of steps but who would benefit from fixtures and fittings to aid balance. We confirm that we have made no changes to our provision of relevant 'facilities', room layout, etc. since our withdrawal from the Scheme.
Luggage can be unloaded approximately 10 metres from the entrance door prior to parking approximately 20 metres from the property.
The property is entered via one 200mm high step leading to a patio door with a threshold of 70mm. When facing the patio door from the outside it is opened by sliding it to the left using a handle on the right of the 'opener'. There is a 400mm vertical support handrail mounted on the wall to the right of the patio door when facing it from outside. This handrail covers a range of distance of from 900mm to 1,250mm above ground level.
The patio door leads directly into the Living Area - Sitting/Dining Room with an adjacent Kitchen Area. From the Sitting/Dining Room three doors give direct access to the Double Bedroom, Twin Bedroom and Bathroom with bath (having a wall-mounted overhead shower), toilet and basin. It's primarily the 'adaptations' to the Bathroom which result in 'M1' access accreditation - lever taps and horizontal / vertical support rails, as appropriate, in relation to the toilet and bath with wall-mounted overhead shower.
[Note: 1) A 50mm rise seat raiser for the toilet can be made available. 2) A non-slip mat is available for the bath.]
This First Floor apartment - above Owl - could not be regarded as 'accessible' to those with mobility impairment and, unfortunately, it cannot be made so.
The property is entered via a flight of worn stone steps - with handrail - which ends in a 'landing' with one step to its side which allows entry through a large doorway. Luggage can be unloaded immediately adjacent to the foot of the steps prior to parking approximately 10 metres from these steps.
The entrance door leads directly into the Living Area - Sitting/Dining Room with an adjacent Kitchen Area. From the Sitting/Dining Room one door leads to a small inner hallway with three doors off it which give access to the Double Bedroom, Single Bedroom (which can be converted into a Twin Bedroom) and Bathroom with corner bath, separate shower cubicle with electric shower, toilet and basin.
Please note that we tend not to agree to children under age of 7 years staying in this apartment. This is mainly because (noise) but also (prefer them not to have to use steps).
The standards set under the 'VisitBritain' National Accessible Scheme have been developed with the accommodation sector in mind. Any Leisure facilities associated with the accommodation available to Guests - for example, our indoor heated pool, spa and sauna - and their associated changing rooms and toilets are not, however, covered by these standards.
The entrance door, which leads into the Changing Room area, meets the minimum standard set for wheelchair access in terms of the width of the opening. Please note, however, that for safety reasons this door incorporates a self-closing mechanism and is secured with a digital lock in order to prevent access by unaccompanied children.
One of the two Changing Rooms is accessible by a Wheelchair User - although we do not have a changing bench in there.
The Shower / Toilet area is reached via an arched entrance which, again, meets the minimum standard set for wheelchair access in terms of the width of the opening. Here, one of the two shower cubicles is 'wheelchair accessible' (1.5m turning circle) and incorporates a toilet (right transfer, support rails in place) and a hand basin with an electronic tap with temperature controlled mixer valve. Water is supplied to the shower via a manual push button fed by a temperature controlled mixer valve. There are no support rails associated with the shower itself but a Wheelchair User would be able to use one of our wheeled shower chairs (available in relation to both 'Mallard' and 'Swift' occupancy) and the hinged support rail associated with the toilet - and, therefore, 'left transfer' to the shower chair.
Neither the second shower cubicle nor the second toilet cubicle (where there is also a hand basin) is accessible to a Wheelchair User.
The Swimming Pool is a level 1.2m deep - swimming depth - and is accessed via curved steps with a small handrail overhanging the first of these steps. We do not have a hoist or other products which would aid either entry to or exit from the Pool.
The Spa is accessed via two straight steps with a small handrail overhanging the first of these steps. The second step continues around the circumference of the Spa to form a bench seat. We do not have a hoist or other products which would aid either entry to or exit from the Spa.
The Sauna - operated by a meter which accepts Â£1 coins - is not accessible to a Wheelchair User. Whether it is suitable for a Guest with mobility impairment will depend upon individual circumstances, bearing in mind the risks associated with a high temperature created within a small 'room' as a result of ladling water onto hot rocks!
[Note: Guests affected by certain 'conditions' and taking certain medication should consider whether they ought to use either the Spa or the Sauna. There are separate posters about this adjacent to both of these 'facilities' but we suggest that those concerned about whether they can safely use them should obviously take medical advice before starting their holiday here.]
In a former implement shed we have a Laundry Room, entered via a wide doorway, where we have two coin-operated front-loading washing machines and one small front-loading tumble drier.
There is no threshold to the door. There is, however, a 4cm wide by 2cm deep hollow in the concrete at ground level immediately in front of the door which serves to channel rainwater across the doorway and away from an area of paving thee. This plus the fact that the door is secured by a combination padlock - both for security reasons and to prevent entry by unattended children - means that the Laundry Room is not regarded as accessible by a Wheelchair User. Guests with limited use of their hands or fingers may find that they are unable to manipulate the combination padlock.
This is sited in a section of a former stabling area. Entry is via a wide stable door having an old uneven stone threshold which is approximately 12cm from front to back and 4cm high. This plus the fact that the door is secured by a large sliding bolt means that the Dustbin Room is not regarded as accessible by a Wheelchair User.
A concrete driveway, rising gradually over the first 15 metres before levelling off, runs approximately 150 metres from the road through the centre of our site. All of our properties and other buildings are adjacent to this driveway.
Beyond the driveway is an area of gravel which serves as the parking area for Owl and Granary and beyond this area is a level grassed track which ends after approximately 200 metres, at the point where it reaches the gate into the yard alongside our stables.
Reached from an area of level concrete just before the gravelled parking areas referred to above is our Water Garden, comprising two ponds as well as flower beds, a lawned area and a patio area with benches. The area is behind a stone wall and accessed via a wide gate secured by a combination padlock in order to prevent entry by unattended children. Paving slabs and a path formed by old bricks leads to a patio area.
A Wheelchair User will need assistance to access the Water Garden both because of the combination padlock securing the gate and because of the uneven nature of the brick path leading to the patio. Guests with limited use of their hands or fingers may find that they are unable to manipulate the combination padlock.
On an area of grass adjacent to Swift is a 'sitting-out' area with a picnic table capable of seating 6 Guests. There is another 'sitting-out', having patio tables and chairs, on a concrete patio area behind Owl / Granary. Finally, picnic bench capable of seating 6 Guests provides a further 'sitting-out' facility on a lawned area beyond the gravelled parking area for Owl. This lawned area is separated by a stone wall 20cm high and is therefore not accessible to a Wheelchair User.
Finally, we have a small Play Area for very young children on a level lawn area which is accessed from the grassed track referred to above.
A comprehensive 'Information Folder', including emergency services 'phone numbers, is available in each of our properties.
Mobile 'phone reception is generally poor here in relation to all Networks - so expect to be in control over when or if you return 'missed calls'!