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The important stuff

  • Check in: 3 pm
  • Check out: 10 am 
  • It is a good idea to bring binoculars with you, also you may bring a fishing rod as there are trout in the lake and these are lovely to eat when barbequed!
  • Mosquito repellent is available, as are citronella candles (although you may want to bring your own branded products)
  • Two extra guests are allowed to camp alongside. They can hire a bell tent with a futon to make up if needed at £100 per night. If you want to bring your own tent this if fine and will incur an additional charge of £40 per night. 
    Please call to book! 0117 204 7830 

    Extra guests will need to bring their own bedding and towels.

  • Sleeping arrangements
  • 1 double, with extra space for up to 3 adults or kids in triple bunk

Extra space available

Space for 1 baby no charge. - please bring your own travel cot & high chair

Space for 3 children from £15 per child per night A triple bunk. Also suitable for adults, available at the same price.

Kids & Pets

Extra camping space available - see the essentials tab for details


  • There is a double ring plug-in electric hob and a Kadai bowl for cooking / BBQ's etc
  • All crockery and utensils are provided 
  • Fridge
  • Brick pizza oven available for guests to use. Hardwood logs can be purchased from the farm 


  • Hot water for washing up inside the tent
  • Private shower and loo (only a few paces from the tent)
  • Commercial washing machine in the communal games room building a few metres away 

Heating, lighting & bedding

  • Heating is via a realistic visual fire effect electric heater, and the outside kadai bowl
  • Five hot water bottles are also available to keep super snug!
  • There are spot lights are on all of the beds for reading, and lights over the kitchen worktop and in the central dining area
  • There is an outside light under the pitched awning and an old style cast iron street light in the garden area


  • The patio can be used as a fun giant chess board and solid chess pieces can be hired for £20 from the farm


At Chigborough

There is a pool/snooker table and a table tennis table in the shared games room, and many board games (upwords, battle ships etc) and books to read for rainy days

Row, row, row your boat: the lake is all yours to explore and life jackets are provided if you are staying at The Raft (4, sizes ranging from S to XL). 

Watch the wildlife through the old telescope or a pair of binoculars. 

Fishing! Chigborough Farm is home to trout and coarse fishery, where you can fish to your heart's content. For lessons for all levels, get in touch with Nigel Angus.

There is a room onsite suitable for yoga, pilates and massage courtesy of Kate Murray, which can be booked directly with the owners or organised on arrival. 

The local area has plenty of paths to explore: you can walk to the Blackwater Estuary from the farm, and along the sea wall. 

Bike hire is available on site at £5 per bike per day. Please bring your own cycle helmets as these are not provided

Golf at Forresters Park, Benton Hall,Braxted Park, andCrownPlaza

Swimming and Gym at CrownPlaza Country Club (5 minutes drive)

There is a pottery studio with ceramic ware, paints and a kiln

Places to visit

Maldon town has lots to see, including the promenade and a splash park!

Colchester Zoo is nearby

The Military Museum, Maldon

Barleylands Farm Park, is great for families, and has a museum and craft centre too.

Colchester Castle reopened in 2014 with a new museum

Food & Drink

Cart Lodge at Chigborough

At Chigborough Farm

Tea, coffee, milk, sugar and kitchen basics are provided. A small bottle of wine, and some locally smoked fish or cheese await you on arrival as a welcome treat.

Terajola run the deli and shop and can provide a breakfast hamper, BBQ hamper or a smoked food hamper for your arrival, please phone Rachel or Jackie on 01621 852048.

On site, The Cart Lodge restaurant and tearoom is run by Rubino's (01621855579). Serving cream teas and lunches every day and dinner from Wednesday to Saturday as well as Sunday Lunch! This is where you'll pick up your keys - a good excuse for a cream tea on arrival! You can also pick up supplies from the Terajola Deli and Pottery studio and can prepare hampers for you (01621 852048). For a wider range of provisions, the local Asda and Tesco can be found in Heybridge.

Pubs & restaurants

The Cart Lodge tea rooms serve lunch every day except Monday, and dinner on Friday and Saturday nights. 

There is a lovely sea wall walk or cycle into Goldhanger where good food is served in two local pubs, The Chequers  - a traditional pub with real ales and a Norman church next door - and The Cricketers - fish & chips at weekends, and good Sunday roasts!

Another short walk westerly, this time along the sea wall, will take you into Heybridge Basin where two pubs and a tea rooms serve food alongside the picturesque Chelmer and Blackwater Navigation Canal Lock.

Meet your hosts

Paul and Sam are both from farming backgrounds and met at Agricultural College, returning home to the family farm in 2000. Since 2006, they have lived at Chigborough, running the farm and Trout and Coarse fishery, on the Northern edge of the Blackwater Estuary in Essex. Chigborough Farm is around 130 acres in total, 50 acres of which is water primarily used for coarse and trout fishing. There is also a smoke house and a small tea rooms on site. They've also been developing some of the old farm buildings, and hold a Farmer's Market every six weeks in the farmyard. 

Wildlife & Environment

The Farm is part of many environmental schemes (HLS, ELS, LEAF MARQUE) and incorporates wild flower mixes, wild bird seed mixes and grass margins on many of the fields. It is close to a quiet and mostly undisturbed Nature Reserve (Wildlife Trust) with a similar habitat of water, pasture and woodland. Wildlife is abundant, with many rare migrant birds spotted either here or on the Wildlife Trust land nearby. 

Getting there

Chigborough Farm, Chigborough Road, Heybridge, Maldon, Essex CM9 4RE

By car

Chigborough Farm is approximately 40min from London. Travel North from Chelmsford along the A12, take the Hatfield Peverel turning and follow signs to Maldon. At the Roundabout take the first exit, then straight over (second exit) the mini roundabout, then turn left for Heybridge at the next roundabout and right for Tolleshunt D'Arcy at the roundabout after this. You are now on the B1026. Continue on this road for just over a mile and the turning 'Chigborough Road' will be on you left, immediately before the Mill Beach Pub.

Take this left turning and you will find Chigborough Farm in half a mile on the left. Please park in the gravel Fishery Car Park opposite the Tea Rooms on the right hand side of the road. Everything you need will be outside the restaurant in the courtyard from 3pm. Please call Sam or Paul if you need help (their phone numbers are on your booking confirmation). There are no signs to direct you, to keep The Raft secure and private, so please follow the instructions carefully!

By bus

There is a bus stop in Heybridge approximately a 2 miles walk away.

By train

Chigborough Farm is 20 minutes from either Witham or Kelvedon Train stations.

Taxis - A good local taxi firm is Arrow Taxis -01621 855111. Prices (for 2013) are £12 from Hatfield Peverel, £15 from Witham and £21 from Kelvedon station

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;


  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 ( 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 ( 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;


(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;


(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.