This access statement does not contain personal opinions as to our suitability for those with access needs, but aims to accurately describe the facilities and services that we offer all our guests/visitors.
Southclay is ideal for those who want a truly memorable self-catering holiday, with spectacular panoramic views over the cliffs to the sea in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty on the North Devon Coast.
Located on the edge of the village of Abbotsham, on a hill but with a gradual approach from the centre of the village, about 3 minutes’ walk away.
Southclay sleeps 10 people and has 5 bedrooms and three bathrooms all on the first floor with a separate WC on the ground floor. A further 2 children can use the narrow foam mattresses as two additional beds if required. The property was built 12 years ago and has an extremely spacious contemporary feel with large windows to maximise the views. The house has been well equipped for self-catering with quality fixtures and fittings and lots of attention to detail including many little extras you probably wouldn’t expect to find as the owner has tried to think of everything to make your stay as comfortable as possible. The property is probably not suitable for someone with very limited mobility as there is no bedroom downstairs and there are several internal steps in the property between rooms.
To make the most of your visit to North Devon and to explore the area properly you probably require a private car as there is excellent access to The Atlantic Highway (the main road linking M5 at Tiverton to North Devon and on to North Cornwall). There is a bus service to the village but it is infrequent.
There is only one principle train station in North Devon, Barnstaple, the northern terminus of the Tarka Line from Exeter, operated by First Great Western. The service runs seven days a week, with a broadly hourly service Monday - Saturday and a less frequent service on Sundays, with a journey time from Exeter of around an hour.
From Exeter there are local connections to Exmouth, Torquay, Paignton and Honiton and longer distance services to and from Cornwall, Bristol, Birmingham, The North, Scotland, Reading, London Paddington via Reading and London Waterloo via Salisbury. There are numerous bus connections from Barnstaple bus station to points along the coast path (see below). The bus station is around a 15 minute walk from the railway station and there are also frequent buses linking the railway station and bus station.
5 daily buses (Mondays to Saturdays but not Sundays) from Barnstaple, the Stagecoach No. 319 to Hartland go via Bideford to Abbotsham. All busses accommodate one wheelchair though they are usually double-deckers so if you are able to get upstairs, you get grandstand views of a visually interesting trip of approximately 35 minutes, along the estuary and through the countryside.
The main bus stop for Abbotsham is in the centre of the village with a shelter and a seat but at the top of the hill there is a request stop only 15 metres from the gate of Southclay.
The main road outside the house has no paved path, though 20metres down the hill the road has a pavement both sides into the village.
The nearest Shopmobility is in Barnstaple
Hire a manual or electric wheelchair or portable scooter for a day, weekends or holidays. A volunteer pushing or escort service and a sighted guide service is also available.
To check availability of equipment and services or to enquire about hire charges; please telephone 01271 328866. Opening times Monday to Friday 9.15am to 4.00pm. www.gonorthdevon.co.uk/shopmobility
Key Collection, Welcome and Car Parking
The property will be available from 4pm unless other arrangements have been made in advance. The provisions for collecting the keys will be made with the confirmation of the booking.
The owner or their representative will visit on the afternoon or evening of your arrival to check everything is OK and answer any questions.
Parking is available for 4 cars in a tarmacked area immediately outside the house. The area is secure, enclosed by walls and a double gate to the road. There is also parking available in the double garage adjacent to the house.
There is a paved area outside the front door with one wide step up to the open porch with a large hessian doormat in front of the main door.
There is an alternative door at the side leading into the utility/kitchen area with two steps)
This area is well lit at night by motion sensor lights and down lights under the porch.
All rooms offer good colour contrast between the floor, walls and doors with all walls painted a clean white and the woodwork stained dark oak.
Every room has an individual thermostat to easily control the heating in that zone. The heating controls are easily accessible, typically at the entrance to the room.
Entrance to Property
There is a spacious hall inside the main door. The floor covering in the hall is slate tiles. The hall is well lit by wall lights and a security alarm is situated on the left inside the door.
There is level access to the kitchen on the left of the hall.
The slate tile floor covering continues through the kitchen and beyond into the conservatory/dining room, the larder, the utility room and to the side door, there are no rugs but there are flat “magic” doormats to trap the dirt inside external doors.
There is a seating area and a low coffee table. In this corner, on the wall there is the wi-fi router. Note: the mobile phone reception inside the house can be poor; and modem for broadband internet access to either plug in or for wireless. If you use wireless there is good signal throughout the house.
The spacious kitchen includes a large run of worktops including a central island, two sinks and two hob units. Two cookers, two fridges, a dishwasher and a microwave are integrated into kitchen units and there are also plenty of storage space in both base and wall units.
An additional fridge/freezer is located in the larder, there is also plenty of shelf space in the larder.
The kitchen boasts many useful utensils and labour saving gadgets including a food processor/blender and a bread machine, there is a 4 slice toaster and cordless kettle rotating 360.
The kitchen is evenly lit with downlights and spot lights above work surfaces and the cooking area and the room is flooded with natural light during the day.
The utility room is off a short passage between the kitchen and the side door. There is a large Belfast sink with lever taps and a slate worktop. A standard size washing machine with a standard drier is stacked above, both are front loading.
The room is lit by down lighters.
Conservatory/ Dining Room
The dining room is in a traditional conservatory, accessed from the kitchen and from the games room both through double glass doors with one step.
The oval dining table and chairs can easily be carried outside for alfresco dining through the rear double conservatory doors to the large patio area outside which runs the full length of the rear of the house.
The table legs are crossed under the table giving plenty of free space around the edge of the table with an under-space of 68cm. There is plenty of free space around the table for 10 chairs but they can easily be re-arranged or removed to make more space as suits. There are further chairs in the games room or stools in the kitchen if needed.
Lighting is natural daylight with two glass walls (blinds for privacy and to protect from the heat in summer) and a glass roof. There is feature low level lighting at skirting level and a wall light or moonlight for evening meals.
The floor changes from the hall/kitchen/conservatory areas in the games room where it is real oak floorboards, there are no rugs. From the hall and the kitchen there are two wooden steps down to the games room, (the kitchen steps have a wooden hand rail) from the conservatory the access is down 1 step through the double glass doors as already mentioned.
In the centre of the games room is a large pool tablewhich cannot be moved. Two arm chairs and two wall storage units are also too large to move. The remaining furniture, side table, jigsaw table, additional chairs, keyboard etc. can easily be arranged to suit.
Lighting is natural daylight and at night is a combination of ceiling lights, down lights and wall lights with additional table lamps for occasional lighting.
The lounge is accessed from the hall down two steps and from the games room, level access through double doors. There is an external double glass door to the patio at the back where the hot tub is housed.
The floor covering is short pile fitted carpet, there are no rugs.
The room has a mixture of seating with large sofas (one a leather corner unit) and chairs. There are two small, occasional tables. The large L-shaped sofa cannot be moved but the remaining furniture can be moved to suit
The wood burner does not have a guard but it is set well back into the chimney breast. The doors of the wood burner should be secured closed whenever the wood burner is lit.
There is surround sound and remote controlled widescreen digital television with subtitles, DVD player, radio and CD player and MP3 access points.
Lighting is natural daylight and by night wall lights and table lamps for occasional lighting.
There is level access through a door to the second lounge/small snug. This room has a wall mounted flat screen TV and DVD player, a 2seater sofa and some children’s books and toys. It is a good place for adults or children to “escape” the rest of the house for a few hours.
The floor covering is short pile fitted carpet, there are no rugs.
Lighting is natural daylight and by night, down lighters.
Stairs and Landings
From the hall, there are 13 stairs to the first floor. They are a combination of straight and angled corner stairs. There is a strong wooden bannister up the right hand side of the stairs. A simple stair-gate can be positioned at either the top or the bottom of the stairs if requested.
The stairs and landings are well lit using a combination of down lights and wall lights. A plug-in night light is also available at the top of the stairs
The floor covering is short pile fitted carpet with no rugs.
Bedrooms and Sleeping Areas
The largest bedroom is en-suite, with access down 2 steps to the sleeping area. There is a superking- sized double bed and remote controlled TV, DVD, radio, CD.
The second double bedroom and the bunk room are reached down a passage with 2 steps. The double is en-suite and has a king-size bed. The bunk room has sturdy 3ft wide beds, the size of a standard single but they cannot be separated into two single beds.
Two twin rooms both have two, full size, standard single beds; one twin room is opposite the top of the stairs, the other down a second passageway with one step. There is a foam sofa bed in the second twin which can be used as additional sleeping as two small, low singles or one higher single but is only really suitable for children as it is quite narrow (70cm/ 2’4” wide)
All bedrooms have short pile fitted carpet with no rugs.
There are no locks on any bedroom doors.
All bedrooms have remote controlled portable TVs (the master bedroom also has the additional facilities already described)
Lighting is natural daylight and at night overhead lights or wall lights, in some rooms controlled by a dimmer switch. Bedside lamps are also beside each bed.
Bathrooms, Shower-rooms and Toilets
The downstairs WC is accessed off the hall. The flooring is slate tiles, the same as the hall. It is a small room with a toilet pan and a wash basin; it is well lit with two down lights.
On the first floor are three bathrooms, all with further WCs, all tiled throughout, including the floor and all with bright water resistant down lights and mirror lights where needed.
All have accessible shaving sockets, extractor fans and heated towel rails.
A non-slip bath/shower mat and a stool for easier toddler access to the toilet or basin are also provided.
The master en-suite has a large, double ended, slightly sunken, deep bath, 45cm from floor level to rim, but 50cm from the rim to the base of the bath which may make it difficult access for anyone with limited mobility.
There is an enclosed double shower unit with a small step, a bidet, a toilet and a wash basin.
The second en-suite adjacent to the second double bedroom is a small shower room with a double shower enclosure. a toilet and wash basin.
The main bathroom is extremely spacious with no steps. It includes a large corner bath with a seat, a toilet and wash basin. There is also a “wet room” style power shower with no enclosure and level access. The whole floor gently drains to a single point; it is made of a nonslip safety tile. Note: there are no grab rails, horizontal or vertical, around the shower.
The garden at the back of the property can be reached either side of the house, on the right via a paved path, through a tall wooden gate and on the left via a small paved courtyard with a tap and a washing line space. Through another wooden gate, there are two steps down to the patio area at the back of the house.
The paved patio runs the full length of the back of the house. There is a large gas barbeque on wheels and two seating areas with wooden garden furniture and cushioned, plastic rattan furniture, one outside the conservatory – and a further area outside the double doors to the lounge. The cushions for the outdoor furniture is conveniently stored in a large storage unit on the patio, although the fabric is water resistant we ask our guests to always store the cushions away when not in use.
The hot tub stands on its own plinth in the corner of the lawn area of garden, but is accessed from this part of the patio. The edge of the hot tub is 28cm above the patio, it is recommended to sit on the edge of the hot tub and swing the legs over the side to enter it carefully as the height from the edge to the step/seat inside is 60cm and the inside of the hot tub is obviously slippery.
There is an unfenced drop at the edge of the patio 75cm high to the level lawn below. This grassed area is approximately 14metres wide x 21metres long and accessed by 4 wide circular steps in the middle of the patio. The lawn and the patio are surrounded by walls and secure fencing for security and privacy. At the far end of the lawn is a small flower bed and a gate to access the tennis court. A second gate beside the hot tub provides access to the swimming pool area and via a small set of iron spiral stairs, further access to the tennis court. The pool area is behind a large stone wall beside the hot tub, accessed along a 10metre paved path with a high gate from Southclay garden for security. An 11metre x 4.50metre x 1.2 -> 2.2m deep, heated, outdoor swimming pool is normally kept covered by an insulated safety cover which clips to the side of the pool. The owner will explain how to safely remove the cover when you arrive. Access to the water is via the 5 steps at the side of the pool into the shallow end. Please note – the pool itself is not fenced and it is freely accessible if you do not keep the garden gate closed.
There is a large paved area with further seating beside the pool, sheltered by glass panels, it is a lovely suntrap. This is a communal area for guests from both The Annex and Southclay to use but beware- these tiles (the brown ones) can get very slippery when wet or if you have wet feet.
Only well behaved dogs are welcome.
- Dogs must be kept downstairs at all times and exercised off the property.
- Please pick up after your dog, there is a dog poo bin in the centre of the village only 4 minutes away.
- Please do not leave dogs unaccomanied in the house unless they are secured in a crate.
- Please do not allow pets to run free in the communal areas (tennis court and pool)