I am ridiculously excited!
Not only have I got a Visit Britain plan finally under-way, I’ve found a hotel that was used as a film set for the Hammer Horror movies including The Brides of Dracula!
After lots of far-flung backpacking, I’ve finally got a week set aside and an opportunity to see all the amazing sights closer to home that I’ve previously overlooked or haven’t seen in far too long.
As our first stop, my boyfriend and I plan to explore Cornwall from a Bed & Breakfast based in St Austell. Given the seven hour drive to get there, a stop-over in Windsor seems like the perfect solution.
Trawling through the hotel comparison sites, a magnificent Victorian Gothic mansion rises from the page. It’s a combination of beautiful architecture, country grounds, river Thames views and a shape so angular and imposing it wouldn’t look out of place in a Stephen King movie.
I take a closer look at ‘The Oakley Court, Windsor’. Steeped in history, the house was built in 1859 as a private residence. On an even closer look, it turns out that the property gained notoriety in the 60s and 70s as the exterior was used for a number of Hammer Horror movies including The Brides of Dracula, The Plague of the Zombies and – my personal favourite – Dr. Frank N Furter’s castle ‘The Frankenstein Place’ in The Rocky Horror Picture Show. As a big fan of horror movies, that was my cue to call off the search.
My boyfriend, on the other hand, isn’t a fan of horror and gore at all and probably had the Holiday Inn earmarked. Dracula and zombies may be the wrong sales tool for me to persuade him to part with £149 for the night.
I seek out some photos of the beauty of the place, trying a new angle, when I stumble on a gem that might appeal to his nature a little more than the charms of Frankenstein… It appears that The Oakley Court was also used as the film set for St Trinian’s and was home to several members of Team GB during the London 2012 Olympic Games. School uniforms AND sport? Done. I’m grinning all the way to the booking page on this one!
To say I’m a little excited is an understatement. We were planning to book anywhere close to Windsor that came with a car park but this was too good to pass up. As the first night of our trip, what could be better than a stunning country home with an eerie edge. The hotel sits along a stretch of the river Thames and has 35 acres of grounds to explore.
So, under the cover of darkness, will it be all creaking corridors, flickering candles and things that go bump in the night?
I’ll have to let you know.
Take a proper look here: www.oakleycourt-windsor.co.uk