Welcome to Isaac’s Byre

Here is some useful information for your stay.


Emergency Contact Numbers


GP Surgery


Alston Medical Practice
The Surgery
Cottage Hospital


Tel: 01434 381 214




Ruth Lancaster Hospital (including Minor Injuries Unit open 24hrs.)

Church Road





Tel: 01434 381 218



Alston Community Hospital, Alston, CA9 3QX

Tel: 01434 381511




Tel: 0845 33 00 247


N.B. By appointment only

Vet’s Practice


Old Stone Vets:

6 Skelgilside

Nenthead Road,




Tel: 01434 381 792



Alston Information Centre

Alston Town Hall

Front Street



01434 382244




Fire, Ambulance and Police: In case of emergency dial 99.


We have provided a telephone for your use in the ground floor bedroom. Mobile phone signals are quite poor in this area.. You may make local or national calls from this phone. .

If you have an Orange or T mobile phone you may find it works outside on the patio. Sometimes it will work inside the cottage.

Heating and Hot Water Systems


Heating is by ground source heat pump, which is regulated by an exterior sensor, and a temperature sensor in the hall, which is normally set at 21°c. Given that it is a complicated system, this is normally kept locked. If you’re too hot or cold, please get in touch with one of us and we’ll come and adjust it for you. Please help yourself to firewood and use the wood burner to keep you warm in the evenings.


The ground source heat pump also keeps the hot water topped up automatically, meaning hot water should always be available unless a large amount has been used. If this is the case, it will automatically reheat within thirty minutes.



 Wireless Internet


Wireless internet (WiFi) is included for the duration of your stay.

If the internet stops working please let us know and we will phone the internet provider.

  Health and Safety Information

 Main Stopcock


The mains stopcock for the water is in the main cupboard in the hall, which is normally kept locked. If you need to access the stopcock, please get in touch with one of us using the details above.


Mains Fuse box and Trip Switch


The main fuse box and the trip switch for the electricity is in the main cupboard in the hall, which is normally kept locked. If you need to access the stopcock, please get in touch with one of us using the details above.


Emergency gas turnoff


To turn off the gas in an emergency, turn the wheel located at the top of the gas bottles.


Fire Blanket and Extinguisher


The fire blanket and extinguisher are located above the worktops, either side of the cooker. The extinguisher is on the wall to the left of the cooker, whilst the fire blanket is underneath the cupboard to the right.


Smoke Detectors CO detector and Heat Sensor


The smoke detectors are wired in to the mains. They are located in the ceiling of the kitchen, hall and in the ceiling at the top of the stairs. The kitchen smoke detector also incorporates a heat sensor, which will go off in the event of a fire. The CO detectors are situated in living room/kitchen and on wall of stairs. These will sound an alarm if there is CO in the air.


Spare Light Bulbs


Spare light bulbs are located in the small cupboard, under the stairs in the hall. If you use one, please let us know and we’ll replace it!


First Aid Kit


A first aid kit is located under the sink, and includes plasters and a crepe bandage.





A clockwork torch is provided on the windowsill of the kitchen next to the door. There is also a rechargeable torch plugged in to the socket in the upstairs twin bedroom. There are instructions for the bedroom torch in the folder if you need them.


Wood burner

When using the wood burner, we recommend you use the spark guard, located underneath the wood burner itself.  There are also fire gloves for opening the door, in the bucket on the right.


When you’ve finished using the wood burner, please clean it out and place all ash in the metal can next to recycling boxes.


The fire has been made up for you. Newspapers, kindling and fire lighters are stored in the under stairs cupboard.

There is a fireguard provided in the boot room if you wish to use it.


Use of Stairs


At the bottom of the stairs, there is a turn to the left, and the steps are narrower on the inside of the turn so please take care when going up or down.




As we have fairly strong winds here we recommend you use the door at the side of the kitchen/living room as your exit point to the garden. This door has a high threshold  and a step down into the yard. So please be careful to avoid tripping. There is also a low drain cover at the corner of the yard/patio.

We have provided a wind up torch on the window ledge for you to use. The wood store, recycling bins, ash bin and poop bin can be found there.


When the weather is fine you can then make use of the patio doors.


Rubbish and Recycling


Please bag up all rubbish from the bins, using the blue bags provided, and place them outside the back door on the patio.


As part of being as sustainable as possible we request that you recycle as much of your rubbish as possible.


A recycling box is provided outside in the yard.

Please leave:

Glass, washed


Drink and food cans, please wash

Card board (flattened)

Foil dishes (washed)

Plastic   (bottles, cartons, cling film, bags etc.) All washed please.


Food waste

If you wish you may put tea bags, fruit and vegetable uncooked waste (no meat) into the compost box under the sink. We will then put it into one of our compost bins or the wormery.


Hens. Please, we ask that you please don’t offer them food as they will then pester all guests and dig up the lawn!



Fat and grease

Because we are on a septic tank it is very important that no fat or grease goes down the sink. Will you please put all waste fat, grease, oil etc. into the bowl provided under the sink and we will dispose of it. Thank you



If you use non rechargeable batteries we have provided a box for recycling under the sink. We will then take them to a recycling centre when doing our shopping.

We have a battery charger you may borrow if you have rechargeable batteries. Please ask next door.


How to lay an open fire


First of all, screw up 6-8 sheets of newspaper into lose balls. Place these in the centre of the woodburner, and lay strips of torn up cardboard on top of the newspaper in a lattice pattern. Next, lay kindling on top in the same way. Place a few small logs on top of the kindling, and light the newspaper.  When the fire is alight you will be able to place larger logs on top of the fire.


Instructions on how to use the vents on this wood burner are included in this folder.


Extra logs are located outside the side door. All fuel is included in your stay, however we would ask that you are economical with their use.


When using the wood burner, we recommend you use the spark guard, when you have the doors open this is located underneath the wood burner.  There are also fire gloves provided for your use.


In the under stairs cupboard you will find extra newspaper, kindling, cardboard  for your use. The Spar and Moredun garage both sell kindling, firelighters and bags of logs.


When you’ve finished using the wood burner, please clean it out and place all ash in the metal can outside in the yard.


There is a fireguard provided in the boot room if you wish to use it.



Pets are welcome here at Isaac’s Byre.

For the duration of your stay, we provide free dog tags which have the phone number of the cottage and our phone number and complimentary poop bags. Please use the bags and leave them in the small metal bin in the yard at the back of the cottage. The water bowl (Portabowl) can be bought at the hardware shop in Alston.


We do ask that you make sure you respect the cottage and help us to keep it pleasant for future guests. Please keep pets off the furniture, and note that they are not allowed upstairs or in the bedrooms.


In addition, please don’t exercise your pet in the garden. If you do decide to take them outside, please keep them on a lead at all times for the safety of the livestock in the surrounding fields and the wildlife which lives in the verges.


We provide complimentary poop bags, hanging on a peg in the boot room. If you are taking your dog out first thing in the morning or last thing at night, you may take them down the track between the end of the terrace the houses to the right of the front door. However, please clean up after them, and place the bags in the metal bin outside the back door in the yard.


For some other recommended walks, please see the more general pages on walks in the surrounding area.


The boot room also contains towels and old sheets to clean your dogs’ feet and dry them off before they walk on the carpets.


We also provide throws for the furniture if you wish to use them. These are in the base of the coat rack in the boot room.


Finally, never leave your pets unattended in the property.


Breakages and Damages

If you break or damage anything during your stay, please let us know as we will need to replace it for the next people.

If you spill something on the carpet please place kitchen roll over it, don’t rub, thanks.

If it is something which causes staining we would be grateful if you would let us know so that we can deal with it before it sets into the carpet, please.


Cleaning Products


All of the cleaning products used in the cottage are environmentally friendly.


Cleaning products; washing up liquid, dishwasher tablets and laundry liquid are provided under the sink for your use. We prefer you to use the products that we have provided for you.

As we are on a sceptic tank, please use the materials provided.

All of our laundry and cleaning of the cottage is done using environmentally friendly products. If you wish to know more about the products we use please ask next door.

We appreciate that sometimes accidents happen. If you have an accident on bedding or towels we would prefer that you tell us so we can treat the stain quickly. We have spare linen and towels so we can replace them for you straight away and deal with the stain before it sets.



There is designated parking for two or three cars, right outside the front door, between the walls either side of the property. Please be considerate of the neighbours and don’t block off access to their properties through the gates. Thank you.

Countryside Walks


There are lots of circular walks from the cottage. The walk to Ashgill can be found in the welcome folder in the cottage and on our website.

In the cottage you will find local (circular) walk leaflets plus two books containing more strenuous walks alongside many which are easily achieved in half a day.


At the end of your stay


When you finish spending your holiday with us, please can you make sure you leave the cottage as you would wish to find it. (Any excess cleaning or repairs will incur a charge).


This includes doing the following before you leave:


  • Turn off all lights


  • Bag up all rubbish from all the bins, recycle where possible , use the blue bag provided for non-recyclable rubbish, and place them outside the back door in the yard..


  • Leave glass, paper, cans cardboard and foil in the recycling boxes provided outside in the yard


  • Removing pet hair from all furniture and carpets.


  • If you are able to strip the beds it would be much appreciated.
  • Drop the key into us at Loaning Head next door. If we are not around will you please put the keys into our black letter box.
  • Please use the visitors book to recommend any places you have visited or good places to eat out.
  • We also ask that if you are happy to do so you write a review on any of the online review sites customer comments, please, when you return home. Thank you


Many Thanks and we hope you enjoy your stay here,

Rob and Judith Ann