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Reviews of Sykeside Camping Park, Patterdale

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Review by L McNulty on 12th July, 2008

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. This site was set in a beautiful location and we were looking forward to spending a week at the site with our 2 year old daughter. We arrived late in heavy rain and were advised where would remain dry in which to pitch our tent. The site was fully booked and tents and vans did feel pretty crammed together. Once we were set up we went to visit the facilities and that was an experience I wish never to repeat. The toilets, showers, the entire bathroom facilities were dirty and smelly (ladies) Gents toilets were apparently worse. We never let our daughter back in,, luckily we had brought her portable potty with us. The manager said that they would be cleaned up over night - they weren't and were ten times worse the next morning. We had thought that having a bar and restaurant on a reportedly family friendly site would be pleasant, unfortunately we experienced drunkeness like I've only seen in Newcastle's Bigg market on a saturday night. The final straw was a young man shoving past my daughter to vomit in a corner beside the toilets. I cannot comment on the food etc as we never actually went into the bar. Managers response to my compaint - well that's pretty terrible but it's a saturday night and we're not as bad as some sites! The noise was a factor but things did quiet down at 11pm as promised. Small consolation I think. There was a laudry facility and dish washing area on site. We did not use the laundry but when my husband went to wash up he found a girls school out for a ramble who were using the room to shelter from the rain. The path in front of the block (which also includes the toilets) is a public right of way, and whilst the management have put a coded lock on the toilets to prevent them being used as a public convenience, they were never actually locked. I doubt that this completely accounts for the state they were in. When I complained, the manager accepted the complaint but did not seem bothered about rectifying any of the problems. The fact he kept our deposit and also charged us for the one nights stay was just flabbergasting. Please don't take your children to Sykeside. They won't enjoy it and neither will you.

Date visited: July 2008

Review by Mark Saveur on 21st January, 2008

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I have to agree with the comments made about the staff, they cannot expect repeat business with attitudes like theirs (a South African girl literally shouted at us in the Barn end inn), also agree about the food, we ate at the barn end inn and it quite frankly was disgusting cooked from frozen VERY overpriced rubbish! The site was highly recommended by a friend who'd had previously used it regularly until ten years ago but said himself it had gone downhill quite considerably. We also took the last available spot for three tents and woke up basically in the middle of a flood plain! Not strictly the camps fault but we could have been warned!

Date visited: sept 2007

Review by Jennie on 12th September, 2007

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We've stayed at Sykeside on a number of occasions, albeit out of the main summer season. We have found it to be a wonderful site, ideally situated for the joys of the northern Lakes. The facilities are entirely adequate and have always been clean when we've been there. OK so sometimes the hot water runs out but if the site is busy it's easy enough to plan your visit to the showers to avoid the rush. The pub is great, lovely food and nice to be able to take the dogs in. In terms of the staff we have no complaints whatsoever. In March 06 we got snowed in and had to stay an extra night - the staff were keen to make sure we were OK and the following morning helped us, and the other stranded motorhomers, to dig ourselves out. Our daughter, nearly 6, loves the site. We love it's family friendly approach and the lack of a play area is a boost for us (strangely) as it means we don't spend time standing around watching Ellie on the slide/swing etc but spend time together as a family. There is lots to do if you are an outdoor family who are prepared to make your own entertainment for your kids. Back there again this weekend, can't wait!

Date visited: various

Review by Cath on 24th August, 2007

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Having read the reviews below I have to strongly disagree with the comments, particularly about the site being unsuitable for children. I have been camping at sykeside for nearly twenty years, as a child with my family, and now with my own children, who are 4 and 16 months. The campsite is perfect for children, safe and enclosed, where they can enjoy freedom that they do not usually have at home. There are beautiful low level walks from the campsite which are suitable for little legs, and the lake is a lovely spot for a picnic, skimming stones, and generally getting their little feet wet and dirty. Since when did we go camping to enjoy hotel style facilities? For me and my family it is about cooking and eating out doors, not eating in the pub, although the food is quite acceptable. The recent visit we took was 5 adults and 5 children from 13 to 16 months, all of whom had a wonderful time, despite getting very wet ( which they actually enjoyed!). They did not miss tv, play stations, or any electronic toys made in china. The campsite does lack facilities for changing babies, but with a bit of make doo and mend, the sinks can become a very good stand up bath for a baby. As for the comment about the old owner, Barry was his name, I found him far from helpfull, He was forever shouting at his son, wife and dog, but the shop was much better equipped for walkers. The new staff do sometimes come across as rude, which probably comes from boredom, but I have on the whole found them very pleasant. The site is as beautiful as ever, and I always feel as if I have come home on return. It has not changed in 20 years, so maybe could be updated, but that would probably change it's character and charm. A beautiful site, wonderful for children and the 'real' camper. A great family site. If you are not happy with it, get a caravan!

Date visited: 14 august 2007

Review by BarbandGraham on 21st August, 2007

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We recently visited Sykeside with our two dogs and were happy with the facilities - there is a good-sized fenced field where dogs can be let off the lead for a run and we were pleased that we could take them into both of the bars on site, which was important to us as it was too wet to sit outside. Staff were helpful and friendly, standards of cleanliness in the shower block were acceptable and the views were spectacular. Unfortunately we picked a very wet week to visit, but we will certainly be back.

Date visited: August 2007

Review by Daniel on 1st July, 2007

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Having recently stayed at Sykeside I must disagree with the unfair comments made below. The site is very beautiful and set in a stunning location (despite the awful rain!). However, regardless of the weather we had a wonderful time and will definitely be returning. The staff were all very pleasant and helpful; most of them have been working there at least a year so they were very able to offer advice on local walks and attractions. During the week I was there they jump started 3 cars and called the AA out twice (apparently this is a very common occurrence Ė there was no charge for this), helped a new camper to put up his tent, freed a motorhome that had got stuck on the grass after taking a wrong turn and as soon as they were notified of a blocked toilet they went in and cleared it within minutes. Although one morning when I went to buy a pint of milk the receptionist was trying to explain to a rather rude gentleman that she was aware that the midges could be a problem as the site is only a quarter of a mile form Brotherswater, but she couldnít spray the entire campsite with chemicals as he was suggesting as it would be illegal and dangerous. When I asked her if he was quite serious she smiled and said that a lot of people donít seem to understand that they are in the countryside and like to complain about the lack of mobile phone signal, television reception, sheep bleating at night, other local wildlife such as badgers invading tents (everyone who checks onto the site is warned to keep food overnight in their car so that is doesnít get eaten by badgers!), the midges and her personal favourite, someone once complained that the sunshine was too bright through their tent canvass! She also commented that she is unable to do anything about the wildlife as The Lake District is a national park, and if she had any control over the weather she would be in a better paid job! The site is excellent for walkers as many of the paths run from the back of the campsite so there was no need to drive to any expensive national trust car parks. Having two children myself there was no shortage of things to do; there are no swings or slides, but a fenced off area for children to play in so they donít disturb other tents, although we had a fantastic game of cricket with another family on site, which regrettably had to end early due to bad light! The pubs on site both offer smaller portions of food for children and there is no time that they are not allowed in the bar. The football table in The Barn End Bar was particularly good fun after our own game was rained off! The food was reasonably priced and well portioned. All in all we had a wonderful time, the present owners clearly look after the site and with the exception on the gentleman who wanted the site spraying with DEET everyone else seemed to be enjoying themselves as well. As a final note, I think that it is a bit presumptuous and unfair to write comments about a site where you have not recently stayed as someone has below.

Date visited: June 2007

Review by Amy on 10th April, 2007

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I have to say that this campsite is in a lovely location for walkers. The pub that is right by the campsite also does fantastic food. However, I will not be staying there again. The campsite was not what I call cheap at £20 a night so therefore I expect to be able to have a warm shower. I think only one occasion did I have this pleasure! I feel very sorry for people who take children there as I just do not feel it is suitable.

Date visited: 06/04/07

Review by Steve Marshall on 5th April, 2007

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I used to vist this particular campsite for quite a number of years every (I repeat every) weekend. The owners THEN, were very good & very helpful and facilities were second to none THEN. I realy fancied visiting this site again this easter but when I eventually managed to get through on the telephone and initially enquire about the bunkhouses I was met by a very arrogant UNHELPFUL attitude. Needless to say I'm spending the weekend at another site just up the road. I'm sorry to read such negative feedback but it sounds like it's well deserved.

Date visited: 2000 - 2004

Review by David Donaldson on 4th August, 2006

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This campsite has a truly beautiful location. The scenery is almost certainly unmatched in England. Very sadly, it is tremendously let-down by its new owner an staff. They all seem to have studied hard and long at the 'Basil Fawlty' school of customer service, but in this case it really isn't funny in any sense at all. The prevalent attitude seems to be surliness, as in 'don't bother me, you annoying little customer'. The sparsely stocked and vastly over-priced shop doubles as 'reception', but please don't expect the bored US students to have any interest in your booking details. The toilet/shower blocks are a health hazard - to find them, just follow your nose! we were extremely glad to make our way to Parkfoot Holiday Park, which was much, much better. Avoid Sykeside like 'The Plague', especially if you have children.

Date visited: 28/7/06

Review by Ian on 31st October, 2005

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I have visited this campsite on many occasions, have enjoyed the stay and would have recommended it to anyone, however after a recent visit; I would strongly recommend people to find alternative campsites. The staff are very arrogant, the site is run down and the service received by campsite staff could have been superseded by a 5 year old child. Sorry, but a holiday was greatly ruined and cut very short!

Date visited: October 2005

Review by Disatisfied Camper on 26th September, 2005

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Undoubtedly a beautiful location. Sadly the staff and facilities do not match it. The staff and owners are surly and lack basic skills in customer service. The facilities are in poor repair and unclean. The shop, bar and restaurant are all over priced. Which is all such a shame, when the surrounding views are so outstanding.

Date visited: Sept 2005

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