It looks like you're using an old web browser that we no longer support, so some parts of the site may not work as well as they should and you won't be able to make a booking. Please update your browser (view more details) to make sure you get the best experience.

We're sorry, earlier versions of Internet Explorer have become too unsafe to use, and we can not allow them access to the secure part of our website. We highly recommend switching to a much more secure & modern browser such as the latest versions of any of the following, Opera, Safari (Apple users),  FirefoxChrome, Internet Explorer (11 or above).

Menu

Essentials

The important stuff

  • Check in time is between 4pm-6pm. Please call Alison & Scott in advance if you think you may be arriving outside of these times as Big Sky isn't suitable for arrival in the dark on your first visit. Big Sky Retreat is sited in a quarry - a beautiful old disused quarry but it has high steep sides and a pond.  
  • Check out time is 10.30am
  • Big Sky Retreat is not suitable for children
  • The yurt is heated by a woodburning stove
  • Big Sky Retreat is quite isolated and there is little within walking distance. While this does mean that you’ll have some peace and quiet, we advise you to stock up on provisions and bring a good supply of books
  • Muddy shoes and boots live in the porch, please don’t tread mud inside!
  • Sleeping arrangements
  • 1 double bed

Cooking

  • LPG 2 ring gas hob
  • Coolbox - ice blocks changed daily
  • Outdoor table and chairs
  • Crockery, glassware and cutlery all provided

Washing

  • There is a compost loo in the separate hut next door
  • Gas-powered shower in main cabin
  • Please bring eco-friendly washing products

Heating, lighting & bedding

  • As the yurt is completely off grid there is no electricity, which means no sockets!
  • Solar and wind-up lights are provided
  • You might also need firelighters to give you a helping hand with the stove

Entertainment

  • There is a fire pit and swing outside (in summer only)

Activities

Outdoors & Active

The local area is filled with great ways to get out and about and experience the beautiful Devon countryside:

Kayaking and biking with Saddle Paddle in Exeter

Outdoor climbing with Vertical Frontiers

Fly fishing on the River Taw at Eggresford

Carp Fishing on Creedy Lake

Clay pigeon shooting with the Devon Shooting School

Horse riding at Hunterswood Stables, or a little further away, with a great outdoor experience of the moor, at Dartmoor Stables.

Beaches & watersports

Head to North Devon Surf School at Saunton Sands Beach near Bideford for some expert surfing instruction.

Surfing Lessons are also available from Walking on Waves, also based in North Devon near Barnstaple.

Walking

All you need is a good pair of boots... walk the Two Moors Way , explore Dartmoor or spend an amazing four hour tour of Exmoor with Jonny Kingdom.

Indoors & Active!

Rain's no excuse - you can still try your hand at indoor climbing at Quay Climbing Centre

Places to visit

The nearest village to Big Sky Retreat is Kennerleigh. The closest town is Crediton, and Exeter is the nearest big city.

National Trust properties nearby:

Castle Drogo - 'the last castle to be built in England,' overlooking Dartmoor

Knightshayes - Victorian gothic mansion with beautifully restored Walled Garden

Gardens

The gardens of RHS Rosemoor are well worth a visit, as are Devon's many plant nurseries.

Festivals & events

Markets and food festivals

Dartmouth Food Festival - With cooking demonstrations from Michelin starred chefs and wine tastings in the market square, Dartmouth Food Festival is only a short drive from Big Sky Retreat and is fast becoming a staple of the foodie’s calendar. Held in October.

Local farmers' markets 

Crediton Farmers Market - The market takes place on the first Saturday in every month from 10am to 1pm. With 35 stalls this is the largest farmers market in Devon, and has been voted the Best Farmers Market in Devon for two years running in the Devon Life Food & Drink Awards.

Exeter - Thursday every week - 9am- 2pm

Okehampton - 3rd Saturday of every month - 9am - 1pm

Tiverton - 3rd Wednesday of every month

Food & Drink

Eating and drinking at Big Sky Retreat

Big Sky is quite remote, so stock up on provisions before you get there. If you need to replenish supplies, the local shop Kennerleigh Village Stores has everything you need.

lamb inn

Pubs and restaurants

The Black Dog (1.5 miles) Restaurant and bar in a nearby village - walkable.

The Lamb Inn, Sandford (5 miles) - A Sixteenth Century former coach house with open fires, low ceilings, comfy sofas, real ale and very good, affordable food.

Meet your hosts

Alison & Scott purchased their property in 1990 after having travelled and worked all over the world. Looking for somewhere to live The Good Life - inspired by American "back to the land" pioneers rather than Felicity Kendall - they toured in a caravan for thirteen years before pitching up in Devon and setting about building a house.

Environmental policy

Everything at Hookhill Plantation reflect Scott and Alison's passion for sustainability. They were off grid for 5 years, and now

blackberries

they're connected they barely use electricity. The neighboring Swanney Copse, which is on a rotation coppice programme, supplies the house with wood and garden with beanpoles. Energy efficient, sustainable and rooted in the environment, the plantation uses alternative technologies and recycled materials wherever possible.

Wildlife

The grass gardens attract a huge range of insects and birds, including kingfishers, ducks and geese. Buzzards, sparrow hawks andd peregrines are also frequent visitors to Hookhill Plantation. If you're really lucky you may glimpse the ghostly specter of a barn owl flying past. Deer and foxes are often seen in the woods and in dry summer spells badgers can be seen at dusk digging for worms in the fields. In springtime, bluebells carpet the woodland floor. Make sure you take a basket with you, as in season, the trees and bushes are positively dripping with blackberries, sloes, greengages & elderberries.

Getting there

Hookhill Plantation, Woolfardisworthy East, Crediton, Devon EX17 4RX

BEWARE SATNAV - it will lead you down a very long and rough track and takes you to the house, rather than the yurt, which is about a mile away! So please make sure you use the directions below once you are in Woolfardisworthy.

**Check in is between 4-6pm - Big Sky Retreat is not suitable for arrival in the dark on your first visit, as it is sited in a beautiful old disused quarry with high steep sides and a deep pond**

By train

Take the train to Exeter St David's (35 minutes away by taxi). From here, the easiest way to get to Big Sky is to hop on a train to Crediton, the nearest station, a 15-minute taxi ride away - fare around £13. Trains to Crediton are not frequent so please check before you travel. Tiverton Parkway station is also close by, about 45 minutes by taxi, but this route can be expensive - up to £80 return(!). For taxis, try Arrow Cars on 07764 302301 (not Sundays), or Express Cars on 01363 777177.

By car - beware satnav, see above

From M5 Junction 27

Take the A361 to Tiverton. Do not take the first turning signposted Tiverton but continue to Knightshayes roundabout. Take the left turn to Tiverton. Go over the mini roundabout. At the second roundabout take a right turn past Morrisons. At the mini roundabout turn right (signposted Witheridge – B3221). Take the left hand turn signposted Long Drag Hill –B3127. Follow the road through Withliegh – through Beech wood. Take a left hand turn signposted Puddington and Black Dog. Follow the road through Puddington village taking the sharp right. Continue until you reach a chapel on right. At the crossroads take left turn (signposted Woolfardisworthy). Follow a windy narrow road to all the way to a T-junction. Take right (Woolfardisworthy Cross). Then follow the road up the hill, past a farm on your left, then past Gratton House, 200 yards past this is a sharp right bend corner (best to beep before you enter). Hookhill Quarry is in the middle of the bend on the left hand side. Pull in off the road to open the gate if closed... if not come in and park up! Big Sky Retreat is a short walk following the grass tracks & then path around the open quarry.

 

From Exeter

Take the A377 to Crediton. At Crediton go past a Shell garage on the left and follow the road until the first turning where you are allowed to take a right. Follow the signs to Sandford. Turn left at the T-junction. Take the first left. At the roundabout take a right towards Sandford. Go through Sandford to Kennerliegh. Go past the village shop on your left – continue up the hill and along the road. Take the second turning right (signposted Woolfard’y) and follow the narrow single track road for about a ½ mile until you go up a slight hill and a sharp bend. Hookhill Quarry is on your right-hand side and is the first lay-by to pull off completely from the road. Park up inside the gate. Looking south Big Sky Retreat is a short walk following the track and then path to your left.

From North Devon

With the Black Dog Inn on your left drive to the crossroads.Take the Crediton/Sandford Road. Go about ½ mile and take the first turning left (signposted Woolfard’y). Follow the narrow single track road (for about a ½ mile) until you go up a slight hill and a sharp bend. Hookhill Quarry is on your right-hand side and is the first lay-by to pull off completely from the road. Park up inside the gate. Looking South, Big Sky Retreat is a short walk following the track and then path to your left.

Booking Terms

Canopy & Stars low price promise
 
Book with us in confidence knowing you won’t find that place cheaper elsewhere. All of the prices we display are set and matched by our Owners. (In this world of foreign currency, we do have to say 'subject to exchange rates' for some of our European places.)

What does ‘from price’ mean?
 
Our ‘from price’ is based on a four night stay in low season and designed to help you to compare different prices across our collection. Some of our Owners vary their nightly rates and check in days throughout the year, so it may differ from the rate quoted below the calendar. It is quite common (although by no means universal) for places to charge a little more in peak season or for shorter stays, to cover changeover costs. Consider booking longer stays during the cooler months if you’re looking for the lowest nightly rates.

Agency Terms & Conditions

Except where otherwise specified, we Sawday’s Canopy & Stars Ltd Company No 09088366 of Merchants House, Wapping Road, Bristol, BS1 4RW act only as an Agent in respect of all bookings we take and/or make on your behalf. Sawday’s Canopy & Stars is part of the Alastair Sawday’s Group of Companies. We accept no liability in relation to any contract you enter into or for any services or arrangements you purchase (“Booking(s)”) or for the acts or omissions of any supplier(s) or other person(s) or party(ies) connected with any Booking. For all Bookings, your contract will be with the supplier of the Booking in question, and in most cases this will be the owner of the property you’ll be staying at (“Owner(s)”). When making your Booking we will arrange for you to enter into a contract with the Owner of the Booking. Your Booking with us is subject to these Agency Terms & Conditions and any specific booking conditions of the relevant Owner(s) you contract with. The Owner’s booking conditions may limit and/or exclude the Owner’s liability to you.

You may decide to make more than one Booking with us at the same time. The price charged in total for more than one Booking will always equal the prices charged separately for each individual Booking. All Bookings are available to be purchased separately at the same price as they are when more than one Booking is made. This means that any multiple Bookings do not constitute a package as defined in the Package Travel, Package Holidays and Package Tours Regulations 1992.

By making a booking, you agree that:-

  1. you have read these Agency Terms & Conditions and agree to be bound by them;
  2. you consent to our use of your information in accordance with our Privacy Policy;

and

  1. you are over 18 years of age and where there may be age restrictions in place, you declare that you and all members of your party are of the appropriate age.

 

The Canopy & Stars online booking system enables Guests to make Bookings 24 hours a day. A Booking is confirmed on receipt of a 25% non-refundable deposit for all Bookings with check in dates of more than 10 weeks away. For all Bookings that have a check in date of less than 10 weeks before check in, payment for the Booking will be required in full and the entire Booking will be non-refundable. The Canopy & Stars telephone booking line is open Monday to Friday 9am to 6pm. When using the online enquiry form, for those Properties without online booking, please allow 24 working hours for us to contact you by telephone to confirm the Booking. If we are unable to reach you by phone we will attempt to contact you by email. We will contact you during Canopy & Stars working hours (Monday to Friday 9am to 6pm). Online or email enquiries will be dealt with in the order they are received, but please be aware that we cannot guarantee reservation of your selected dates until the receipt of suitable payment. Therefore, if possible, we do recommend that you book on the Canopy & Stars website using the online booking system.

 

1. Booking and payments

 

1.1 In order to confirm your chosen Booking, you must pay a non-refundable deposit as required by the Owner of the Booking in question (or full payment if booking within 10 weeks of the date of your check-in).

 

1.2 Your Booking is confirmed and a contract between you and the Owner will exist when we receive payment of the deposit and send you a booking confirmation on the Owner’s behalf. This booking confirmation will normally be sent out within 24 hours in the case of email and seven working days in the case of post, and will contain the details of your Booking and of payments made and due. If you have not received your booking confirmation within the specified time, please notify us as soon as possible by email (bookings@canopyandstars.co.uk). Please check your confirmation carefully and report any incorrect or incomplete information to us immediately. As we act only as booking Agent, we have no responsibility for any errors in any documentation except where an error is made by us.

 

1.3 Where a deposit has been paid, full balance payment will be due 10 weeks in advance of your check in date and a reminder will be sent to you two weeks prior to this date, where applicable, by email. We automatically take the balance payment using the same card as used to make the deposit payment. It is your reponsibility to advise us if we should use a different card and to contact us by telephone (0117 204 7830) to arrange for alternative payment method. If the balance payment does not successfully go through as there is a problem with your card, such as it expiring, then we will contact you to try and take alternative payment. If we have been unable to take payment after two weeks of the balance due date, then with regret, we will notify the Owner who may cancel your Booking.

 

1.4 Except where otherwise advised or stated in the booking conditions of the Owner concerned, all monies you pay to us for a Booking will be held on behalf of the Owner(s) concerned.

 

1.5 Credit Card payments are processed via Alastair Sawday’s Publishing Co. Ltd who provide merchants services facilities to Sawday’s Canopy & Stars Ltd.

 

2. Cancellation and Amendment by You

 

2.1 Any cancellation or amendment request must be sent to us by email (bookings@canopyandstars.co.uk) and will be considered and responded to within one working day of receipt. You are also advised to confirm all changes to our Customer Services Department by calling 0117 204 7830. Please ensure that you have received written confirmation of any changes to your Booking prior to travel. Whilst we will always try to help, we cannot guarantee that such requests will be met.

 

2.2 Amendments and cancellations can only be accepted in accordance with the booking conditions of the Owner of your Arrangements. The Owner may charge the cancellation or amendment charges shown in their booking conditions (which may be as much as 100% of the cost of the Arrangements and will normally increase closer to the date of departure). The Owner may charge cancellation or amendment charges in accordance with its own booking conditions, however for the sake of convenience only, we have outlined the Owner’s charges at clause 2.3 and 2.4 below. Please note that these are the Owner’s own cancellation and amendments charges, not Canopy & Stars’, and therefore the Owner may vary their charges as they wish, without notice to us. The correct charges will be notified to you at the time of your cancellation or amendments.  

 

2.3 Owner’s General Cancellation Charges:

2.3.1 Cancellation by you at any time will result in your deposit being forfeited, as all deposits are non-refundable.

 

2.3.2 All monies paid for a holiday (deposit and balance) are non-refundable within 10 weeks before check in date.

 

2.3.3 Cancellation of any holiday after it has been paid in full and at a date 10 weeks or more in advance of your check in date, will result in forfeiture of your deposit (or an amount equivalent where one was not paid as the holiday was paid in full) and the balance being returned to you. 

 

2.3.4  Cancellation insurance is available but will be a third party arrangement and not involve Canopy & Stars or the Owner in any way.

 

2.4 Owner’s General Amendment Charges:

2.4.1 Alterations to your Booking can only be made more than 10 weeks prior to the check in date, after which time alterations will be treated as cancellation. All alterations are subject to availability and may incur a £30 adminstration fee.

 

2.4.2 Differences in the total amount payable resulting from alterations will be refunded to you in the case of a decrease in price and paid by you in the case of increases in price.

 

Special note: Generally Owners will charge the above cancellation and amendment charges, however we must stress that these are a guide only and charges may differ from those shown here depending on the Owner. The exact charges will be notified to you by the Owner at the time of cancellation and/or can be found in the Owner’s own booking conditions which are available from the Owner on request.

 

3. Changes and Cancellations by the Owner

We will inform you as soon as reasonably possible if the Owner needs to make a significant change to your confirmed Arrangements or to cancel them. We will also liaise between you and the Owner in relation to any alternative Booking offered by the Owner but we will have no further liability to you.

 

4. Complaints

Because the contract for your Booking is between you and the Owner, any queries or concerns should be addressed to them. In the event that you have any complaint about your stay, please notify the Owner as soon as possible. If you don’t follow this procedure there will be less opportunity for the Owner to investigate and resolve your complaint and so make your stay as enjoyable as possible. Delays may also mean that amount of compensation you may be entitled to may be reduced. Whether or not your complaint is dealt with satisfactorily, please also contact us as we appreciate all feedback. It’s important to us and the Owner to know that you’ve enjoyed your stay or if anything could have been improved.

 

5. Pricing

Canopy & Stars reserve the right to amend advertised prices at any time on behalf of the Owner. We also reserve the right to correct errors in both advertised and confirmed prices.Special note: changes and errors sometimes occur.

 

6. Information & Accuracy

The information and prices shown on this website are varied from time to time and may change between the time you first view a property and make a Booking. You should check that all the details are as you expect prior to making a Booking. It is always possible that, despite our best efforts, some of the properties (including the features and extras available) may be incorrectly described and/or priced. If we discover this is the case after you have made a Booking, we reserve the right to contact you with details of the correct information and/or pricing and will give you the option to:

(1) proceed with the Booking based on the correct information and/or pricing, which may require the payment of an additional amount by you;

OR

(2) subject to availability, change your booking dates to dates when the pricing can be honoured ad so no additional charge to you. In the event that a lower price can be offered for alternative dates then the difference would be refunded;

OR

(3) cancel the Booking. If we do not receive your instructions within 5 days of contacting you, we reserve the right to cancel your Booking without liability to you.

 

7. Our Responsibility for your Booking

Your contract is with the Owner and its booking conditions apply. As Agent, we accept no responsibility for the actual provision of the Booking. Our responsibilities are limited to making the Booking in accordance with your instructions and acting properly in accordance with our legal duties as an Agent. We accept no responsibility for any information about the Booking that we pass on to you in good faith. However, in the event that we are found liable to you on any basis whatsoever, our maximum liability to you is limited to twice the cost of your Booking (or the appropriate proportion of this if not everyone on the Booking is affected). We do not exclude or limit any liability for death or personal injury that arises as a result of our negligence or that of any of our employees whilst acting in the course of their employment.

 

8. Pets

Not all properties accept pets. If you wish to take your pet on holiday, please advise us before booking and we can check whether pets are accepted at the property. You must obtain the prior consent of the Owner before taking any pets to the property. A nightly charge may be made by the Owner for each pet and additional terms may apply.

 

9. VAT

Many of the Owners of properties in the Canopy & Stars portfolio are not registered for VAT in which case no tax is payable. Where VAT is payable, the tax is included in the advertised holiday rental price.

 

10. Visa, passport and health requirements.

Unless you tell us otherwise, we assume that all members of your party are British citizens who hold or will hold full British passports valid for the entire duration of the Arrangements you chose to purchase. Information on visa, passport and health requirements, where given and applicable, is so given on this basis. Requirements may change and you are therefore strongly recommended to check the up to date position with the Owner of the Booking, Passport Office, appropriate embassy or consulate or your doctor as applicable in good time before the commencement of your holiday.

 

11. Insurance

You are strongly recommended to take out personal travel insurance for all members of your party. It is your responsibility to ensure that the insurance you purchase is adequate and appropriate for your particular needs. Please read your policy details and take them with you on holiday.

 

12. Special requests

If you have any special requests (for example dietary requirements, cots or room location), please let us know at the time of booking. We will pass on all such requests to the Owner, but unfortunately, we can't guarantee that they will be met and we will have no liability to you if they are not.

 

13. Group Bookings

Not all Owners accept Bookings for a single sex group (for example, a stag or hen party). Guests wanting to make such a Booking should check with us beforehand to enable us to check whether the Owner is prepared to accept the Booking. We will then advise you accordingly. In event that an Owner does not accept this type of Booking then it is with regret, that the Booking may be cancelled and cancellation fees may apply. It is the Guest’s responsibility to enquire with Canopy & Stars and/or check on our website beforehand to make sure that this type of booking is permitted.

 

14. Maximum Numbers

Please note that except by prior arrangement confirmed in writing, only the number of persons specified on a booking confirmation may occupy  a property. Most owners reserve the right to refuse admittance or revoke a booking if this condition is not observed and you are unlikely to receive any refund.

 

15. Your Responsibilities

Please note that you have a contract with the Owner of the property. As such you are under a responsibility to behave in a proper, appropriate and legal manner whilst staying at the property with due respect to the Owner, the Property and other guests and their property. You are responsible for informing the Owner of any losses or damage to the property as soon as possible. Please note that you will be liable to pay the Owner for any losses or damage to the property caused by you or a member of your party (except reasonable wear and tear). Some Owners will also require damage deposits. You must also leave the property by the check-out time specified on your booking. If any guest behaves inappropriately or improperly (of which the Owner will be the final judge on their Property), or illegally, the Owner reserves the right to ask the guest and their party (at their discretion) to leave the Property before the end of the holiday period and/or refuse any future bookings from you.  Any refund for so doing will be at the entire discretion of the Owner. In addition, the Owner reserves the right to sue the guest for any loss, damage or injury caused to the Owner, the Property or to other guests and/or their property. As agent, we will have no liability to you in these circumstances. 

 

16. Governing Law and Jurisdiction

These terms and conditions have been drafted in accordance with and are governed by English law and the courts of England and Wales have exclusive jurisdiction in relation to any and all disputes arising out of these Agency Terms & Conditions.

 

17. Discrepancies

In case of a discrepancy between these Agency Terms & Conditions and any other Canopy & Stars literature, these Agency Terms & Conditions shall prevail.

 

18. Validity clause

In the event that a court finds that a condition in these Agency Terms & Conditions is illegal or void, the illegal or void provision will be severed from the remainder of the Agency Terms & Conditions, which will continue to be valid and have full force and effect.