A cafe in the middle of nowhere, with views sublime, open anytime, not a soul in sight, but you are trusted to do what is right! I just read that and it makes me feel like a poet of sorts! Lake District does have that effect on you!
Anyway, where was I.... oh yes, about the Honesty café. So, this delightful little find is really a big barn refurbished to be a café. We stumbled upon this whilst driving through the fells in Cumbria during our recent holiday in the Lake District. Having lived in London for nearly all their 13 and 9 years respectively, for my two, going out is synonymous with pit stops at well-known food chains. So, yes, driving through the mountainous single track road with just vast stretches of uninhabited land on either side was a new experience indeed. We were not exactly hungry, but just seeing a delightful little signboard written in plain chalk - 'Follow this track for home made cakes and tea', had the allure of the 'Drink me, Eat me' foods of Alice in Wonderland fame.
The track ended in Hesk View Walkers Barn. It has everything laid out already, cakes, flapjacks (all home made), microwave, kettle et al. There are also toilets and shower cubicles for dusty walkers or cyclists who want to freshen up. The chair and desk arrangements, white board and charts suggested that this was also part of some educational programme and later when I looked this up on their website, I was right. They host groups like schools now and then in such outdoor lessons. The girls had a cupcake and flapjack and their dad a coffee. The prices were all marked and there was a box - the honesty box, where one just dropped the right amounts. I also noticed that there were some bags of wool for sale from the sheep shorn on their farms.
Outside, it was just verdant views, stunningly quiet. The farm house stood a few yards away and again, from their website I gleaned that they do have farm stay cottages for hire on their site. If you're looking for that, you will have to search for Hazel Head Farm in the Duddon Valley. The nearest village is Ulpha (the 2011 census counted the resident population to be 129). In fact, the postcode for this farm actually takes you to the Ulpha post office from where, the directions are really, keeping going up the steep windy hill and turn into the first lane on the right. (Yes, it does sound like something out of a fairytale isn't it!)
Unfortunately, our cameras were all out of charge by then and so I couldn't quite take pics of the actual spot. However, I thought that just the sheer novelty of this welcome break made for an article and so here I am!