Glamping at Brakes Coppice Park in East Sussex was not initially in our summer holiday plans for this year. However, after the cancellation of our original trip, a staycation in the UK seemed like the next best option.
We wanted a good family campsite near to Battle, Hastings as we’d not explored this area previously. In fact, we found 2 campsites near Hastings that fitted the bill, so we did 2 nights in each.
Our first was in a bell tent at Brakes Coppice Farm near Battle and the second was in Owl Yurt at Freshwinds Farm in Pett. Read on for our review of first-time glamping in Sussex, best things to do near Battle and discover how we got on in a bell tent.
Brakes Coppice Park (now Bluebell Coppice Park)
Brakes Coppice Park is a family-run campsite just outside Battle in East Sussex. It covers 14 acres of land and offers a choice of pitches for touring and camping and bell tents for glamping.
On arrival one of the owners, Jules, greeted us and made us feel extremely welcome. She gave us loads of information about the campsite and the best things to do near Battle and Hastings.
Our bell tent
We had never been glamping before and were excited to see what our bell tent would look like. With bunting, fairy lights, and rugs, the inside of the tent was certainly an upgrade on our regular camping experience.
And even better, a double bed! There were two futon beds for the boys, a fridge, and a wicker hamper with our kitchen equipment. It was just perfect for our needs.
The bell tent stood on a wooden veranda in its own fenced area. In front of the bell tent was a small barbeque and dining area.
The only camping equipment I had packed was an electric kettle and with electric hook-up, I was home from home.
Set in acres of private woodland, Brakes Coppice Park is very natural and a great place for wildlife. Look out for badgers, foxes, woodpeckers, and buzzards. We didn’t see any of these, but did hear an owl and the kids found the cutest frog!
Behind our bell tent was a small woodland area, that was ideal for young adventurers. Within minutes of arriving the kids were exploring and den-building.
The campsite also has a small play area with wooden climbing equipment, that was popular with younger campers.
Also, at the end of the campsite is a coarse scenic fishing lake, for use by campers.
We spotted a couple of dads sneaking off early evening with their beers and fishing rods in hand!
The campsite has an honesty coffee shop. Now, this is where campers can make coffee, buy drinks, ice creams, logs for burning and other basic items and pay for it later.
There was an extensive wash block, with individual toilets and shower rooms with free hot water. There was a communal wash-up area behind this.
Best things to do near Brakes Coppice Park Campsite
Just 4 miles from the campsite is the famous historic town of Battle, where the 1066 Battle of Hastings was fought.
Without doubt, one of the best things to do in Battle is a visit to Battle Abbey. William the Conqueror built this a penance for all the bloodshed in the 1066 battle.
Firstly, we followed a sculpture trail around the battlefield where King Harold led his English army. Then we explored the abbey grounds and saw the ruins of the church, marking the spot where Harold died.
Another of the best things to do near Battle is a visit to Bodiam Castle, which is about 11 miles north of the campsite. Or, like us, you could stop to visit this magnificent, moated castle on our journey into Battle.
Sir Edward Dallingridge built Bodiam Castle in the 14th Century to defend the area from French invasion. It is now owned by the National Trust.
Great Battle Wood
Brakes Coppice campsite is within High Weald, an area of Natural Outstanding Beauty, so there is a good choice of local nature walks.
Nature enthusiasts will love a walk round Great Battle Wood. Easy trails lead through woodland and heathland and the area is a haven for wildlife.
Crowhurst circular walk
Another circular walk from the nearby village of Crowhurst, will take you through ancient woodland and the RSPB nature reserve.
Look out for the 1066 Yew tree in the church yard. Apparently, it is over 1300 years old, from the time of King Harold.
How to get to Brakes Coppice Park
Brakes Coppice Park is just outside Battle, site of the famous 1066 Battle of Hastings. The postcode is TN33 9AB.
It is easily accessible by car. From the M25, follow the A26 and A21.
You can also get there by train from London. Trains leave from London Bridge (towards Hastings). The nearest station is Crowhurst and it’s about 10 minutes’ walk from there.
We really enjoyed glamping at Brakes Coppice Park. The hosts (Jules and Des), were friendly and welcoming and quick to respond to queries. Furthermore, the campsite was clean and the surroundings were very natural.
However, the main advantage must be its great location for visiting East Sussex. Here are just a few of the things you could get up to if you are staying at Brakes Coppice. We visited them by car, but you can get a train from Crowhurst to either Battle or Hastings.
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