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Ribby Hall Village: a winter wonderland

Posted on - 7th December, 2010 - 10:26pm | Author - | Posted in - Observations, Parks, Recreation, Reviews

It’s not every morning breakfast is interrupted by a troupe of ducks waddling past your window, usually it’s the sound of a car alarm or a bus thundering past the house. But then we weren’t in central Preston when our feathered friends popped round; no we were taking a short break near Wrea Green. Yes, holidaying just nine miles from sunny Preston. It may seem daft to take a break just half an hour’s drive away but in the tranquil surroundings of Ribby Hall Village we felt like we were a hundred miles from home.

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We arrived on a cold, snowy December night and Ribby Hall Village looked like a Winter Wonderland, all glimmering snow and fairy lights. It was cold but we received a warm welcome, the reception staff were friendly and helpful. We drove to our cottage past Santa’s Tree Top House, bedecked in fairy lights and glowing decorations it looked magical. Santa had even hung his undies out to dry! Down an avenue of fairy lit trees was our modern, spacious and clean cottage. It was kitted out with all the mod cons, including a flat screen TV, much to the delight of my son. Everything was immaculate, from the contemporary decor to the comfy beds and furnishings. We felt instantly relaxed.

After an unbroken night’s sleep we were off to see Santa and explore the 100 acres of grounds. The village has four ponds, an equestrian centre, mini golf, golf, a climbing wall, tennis courts and an outdoor adventure play area. During the warmer months it would be fabulous exploring the grounds on a bike or taking a hike around to see the abundant wildlife. But we were shivering, so opted for the indoor play area instead.

The area is steeped in history. Ribby (Rigbi), the area now known as Wrea Green, was mentioned in the Domesday book. There is an actual Ribby Hall, which was once owned by the Duckworths, a wealthy local family. My great grandmother worked as a maid for the family and my dad remembers visiting the hall as a child. The building still stands but is situated away from Ribby Hall Village and has been converted into apartments. The family lived there until 1941, Ribby Hall then became a military hospital during the second world war. A large RAF camp was situated just outside of Kirkham and the American Air Force were stationed in nearby Warton. The area where Ribby Hall Village is now situated was all farmland, development of the land began in the mid 90’s and the self catering holiday village came into be in 1996.

We rounded the afternoon off with a swim in the freeform family pool, complete with jacuzzis, slides and underwater ‘disco lights’ as my son put it. The holiday camp is ideal for families, we spent the evening in the Bar and Grill where free children’s entertainment, party games and music followed our meal. That’s not to say all the facilities are for children, if you can escape from the kids for an hour or two there is also an over 18’s bar and a restaurant which limits children dining to 5-6.30pm. One of the highlights of my stay was escaping for an hour alone and watching the sun set whilst I swam in the 25m adult pool, followed by a relaxing steam.

The whole family enjoyed our stay at Ribby Hall Village, I recommend it if you have family coming to stay in the north or you just fancy a weekend away from the noise and grind of everyday life. It’s a great base to explore the Fylde Coast, although there is so much to do onsite you might not want to leave.

More relaxation will be on the cards in the new year as Ribby Hall Village opens its luxurious Hotel and Spa in Spring 2011. Tel:0800085 1717

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