Set beside the Lake, inspired by Capability Brown’s original plan, Kirkharle Courtyard is a unique shopping experience, promising home cooked food, creativity, heritage and culture in the beautiful Northumbrian countryside - only thirty minutes north of Newcastle upon Tyne, Hexham, Morpeth and Alnwick.
Within the 18th century courtyard, you'll find work for sale from a variety of nationally-renowned crafts people who sell everything from papier mache artwork to classically inspired sculpture. There's hand-made jewellery and traditionally-constructed bespoke furniture, as well as local crafts, gifts, vintage and antiques. There's also a coffee house which offers some fantastic contemporary cuisine, often using local produce, as well as the traditional cream tea.
Kirkharle's success lies in the way it has managed to combine a modern, but unique, shopping experience with its interesting and varied past.
Kirkharle was the birthplace of Lancelot Capability Brown, the landscape artist once described as the Shakespeare of Gardening. Brown lived on the estate until he was 23 and you can find an exhibition about the man and his work within the courtyard.
The inspirational vision of Capability Brown has recently been brought to life. You can now enjoy his birthplace yourself by taking the pleasant walk around the lake on the fully accessible footpath.
With the recent addition of the Capability Brown play area (for children aged 2-9 years) and a series of activities for the kids - including historic games, a nature trail and a large sandpit area - there’s plenty to keep the little ones entertained whilst visiting the workshops and galleries in the courtyard.
A wonderful cafe and various shops.
Kirkharle is the birth place of Lancelot "Capability" Brown in the windswept land just north of Belsay. There is a superb cafe with wonderful baking, great coffee and a very interesting menu of snacks from breakfast onwards. Be adventurous, they do bring in other styles of cooking - Spanish, Mexican. But there is of course corned beef pie so don't worry about it being too worldwide inits cuisine. Excellent food. And in the courtyard you will find some craft shops, a neat little food shop with Donnington cheeses (excellent) and a small but interesting deli choice. And you will see plenty of information about Capability Brown. I recommend it greatly.
Classy Kirkharle Courtyard
Fraser L, Morpeth, United Kingdom
We called here years ago when this first opened. There was a plethora of shops, galleries, arts & crafts outlets as well as a good restaurant/tea room. Our visit this week on a beautiful sunny day revealed that many of the attractions were not open or closed altogether. Nevertheless, an arts & crafts shop was open as was an art gallery, both of which were really interesting. We called at the tea room for brunch. Great, friendly service; wide selection of dishes and some really gorgeous cakes! Worth a visit just for these!
Kirkharle Lake & Courtyard replied: Many thanks for taking the time to write your review. I am so pleased you enjoyed your trip to Kirkharle Courtyard and the Coffee House. It is unfortunate not all the shops and galleries were open for your visit. All galleries are let independently and we are unable to control opening times of the units, however we are working hard to resolve this to ensure uniform opening times amongst the gift and craft shops.
Carrie E, Lincoln, United Kingdom
We decided to call as advertised as a craft centre unfortunately non of the craft shops were open , browns larder was which was excellent, and the gallery and coffee shop & 2 other stores. We decided to have lunch in the coffee shop as it was getting late the food was great just a pity the seemed understaffed as took over 20 mins to take our order and was nearly an hour before we got our food. A piece of cake and a wrap.
Kirkharle Lake & Courtyard replied: Many thanks for taking the time to write your review. I regret your visit to Kirkharle was less than satisfactory. Unfortunately we are not able to control the opening times of the shops and Gallerys of the Courtyard, but we are working closely with our unit holders hard to address this issue. I am so pleased you enjoyed your visit to Browns Larder and other shops you visited. I am sorry you had a long wait for service at the Coffee House. We suffered staff shortage over the last few weeks due to illness which may explain why your service was such. We work hard to ensure excellent customer service and would be grateful if you would please take the time to let us know the date and approximate tome of your visit so that we can look into this matter further. Many thanks.
Called in this morning for brunch. Arrived and the cafe wasn't that busy however not many tables had been cleared so we found a table and cleared it ourselves. Waited for 10 - 15 minutes for someone to take our order and decided we should try somewhere else, so we left.
Kirkharle Lake & Courtyard replied: We regret your trip to our Coffee Hose was not satisfactory. We work hard to ensure excellent customer service for all our visitors and would be grateful if you would take the time to let us know the date and approximate time of your visit so that we can look into the matter further. We will then be able to reply further with a full response to your review. Many thanks.
Winter walk on New Year's Day
linda13blair, Newcastle Upon Tyne, United Kingdom
It was a bitter cold afternoon on the 1st January but Kirkharle up on the A696 has a bleak beauty about it and the enormous trees are magnificent when in silhouette. If you don't know already, this is the birthplace of Capability Brown, whose tercentenary was celebrated in 2016. They have finished creating a serpentine lake there, which was actually designed by Capability Brown himself and we managed to get some lovely photos. Usually the courtyard has plenty of great art and craft shops open and you can browse, buy, admire and then buy a lovely hot drink in the converted barn, which als houses some information about the famous gardener.
Kirkharle Lake & Courtyard replied: Many thanks for your review. I am so pleased you had a great afternoon at the Courtyard and enjoyed your walk around the lake. I do hope you will visit us again soon.