Frankie goes to Kirby Bellars, Leicestershire

Poplars Farm is a working farm surrounded by the green fields of Leicestershire. Converted in 2018, the Big Barn is a unique, self-catering holiday let made up of the old stables, grain store and workmen’s digs.

There are also three ‘Carry on Camping’ inspired Shepherd Huts. They come with king-sized beds, wood-burning stoves, comfy cushions and everything you’ll need to prepare meals. There’s even a wood-fired hot tub, although this was not available when we visited between Christmas and New Year 2021.

The Paw Award

Everyone knows we dogs normally have four paws, so to get a five paw award is super special. Four is an extremely positive Frankie recommendation, any less and it’s just a question of personal choice.

Christmas in the Big Barn at Poplars Farm

Friendly & welcoming atmosphere

We spent three nights with our adult children, their partners and our grandchildren in fabulous comfort, toasty warm in spacious accommodation. The dining area seats ten in the old grain store and made for wonderfully informal meals and game playing. Bedrooms are rusticly stylish, with comfortable mattresses and the softest pillows.

There was a generous welcome pack to start us off, although luckily there was a copious fridge and separate small freezer to house all the goodies we bought with us – well, it was the festive season.

Lovely Poplars Farm welcome

Helpful staff

Poplars is family run and the super friendly owners live in the farmhouse with their children and dog close by. Nothing was too much trouble and there was no feeling of intrusion that you sometimes feel when the hosts are living on site.

Accommodation suitability & cost per dog

The barn is dog friendly, primarily with hard floors other than the play room. The same with the bedrooms, all beautifully decorated in contemporary colours. Plenty of space for dog beds – Freya and Frankie even had a window view of the garden.

Lots of cosy space for dogs in the bedrooms at Poplars Farm

There is a dog washing facility in the main courtyard.

Ideal for washing muddy paws and boots

We used the sink, which provided hot and cold water, in the outdoor barn seating area to soak muddy paws; this would only suit small to medium dogs though. There was no charge for the dogs.

A bit of Frankie sink action at Poplars Farm

Little extras offered

A welcome pack greeted us which included locally roasted Two Chimps coffee, Yorkshire Tea, freshly squeezed orange juice and crusty bread. There were no little extras for the dogs such as bowls, blankets, etc, but we always take our own so this wasn’t an issue.

The Big Barn playroom at Poplars Farm

Location and dog walks

The location was stunning with the farmhouse and barn nestled among sweeping green fields. There is an enclosed Paddock next to the farm where Freya and Frankie practised their usual doodle dashes. Tucked around the edges are the three ‘Carry on Camping’ Shepherds’ Huts – Kenneth Williams, Sid James and Barbara Windsor.

Spot the Poplars Farm Shepherds’ Huts in the background

The small country lanes are quiet and a short walk across a couple of fields is the Lakes Clubhouse, where we enjoyed a visit to the dog friendly tea room and bar, serving breakfast and lunch. There’s also a musicians and tribute nights calendar of events! Local eateries include The Royal Oak, The Stag & Hounds, and The Montero Lounge, offering eat in or takeaway. They also appreciate dietary needs: “We’re proud that our gluten free and vegan menus are not second best.” 

Rutland Water is nearby, which is great for a walk, but dogs must be on a lead at all times.

The drive leading to Poplars Farm

Frankie awarded Poplars Farm 4 Paws

You can discover more about Poplars Farm accommodation on their website
We are Poplars Farm.