About Studfold Farm
Studfold in the Yorkshire Dales has been run by the Walker family for sixteen generations. Now, with its unique, custom-made adventure and fairy trail, ever-popular camping, glamping and touring park, and long-standing static caravan community, Studfold is run by brother and sister, Anne Challis and Ian Walker, who are both retired teachers.
Brought up on Studfold, now with grownup families of their own, Anne and Ian have, over many years, developed Studfold into a very special family holiday and adventure attraction. From the bewitching curio of the trail and its fairy inhabitants, to the beautiful camping and static park that holidaymakers return to year and year, Anne and Ian’s farming background and love of the Nidderdale countryside shines through every aspect of Studfold.
The beginnings of The Nidderdale Experience
Holidaying at Studfold began in 1959, when a fisherman knocked on the door of Gladys and Herbert Walker’s door at Studfold, and asked if he could park his caravan so he could stay to fish in the beck! Anne and Ian’s grandfather, who was a hospitable chap, said that was fine by him! And so, caravanning and camping holidays, with the beck that children now like to play and build dams in, were born.
Stan and Freda Walker, Anne and Ian’s mother and father, took over the reins of Studfold in 1974. Stan and Freda made great strides with Studfold, installing high-quality facilities and undertaking important accessibility work to make the park even more welcoming to all of its visitors. Until recently, Freda could be seen, busy around the park making sure its facilities were spic and span. Anne and Ian now run Studfold, with a static caravan park that has now grown into a community of 60 caravans, a successful camping and glamping park, and an adventure trail that continues to develop every season, with the fairies now really making their presence felt!
Magic is everywhere at Studfold. The scenery alone is amongst the most stunning in the country. For families with children, who want to be ‘out in the wilds of nature’, and be free to run, play and explore, away from all technical devices, there is no better place.
“It’s about getting out in all weathers and not worrying about a bit of puddle and muck. Coming back with a smile and rosy cheeks.”
Anne and Ian both have a deep love for the countryside and nature, and its power to transform the soul. Their teaching profession gives them a rich experience in knowing how to impart the wonders of the natural world to children, creating a fun and mysterious, yet learning experience that creates memories of the Yorkshire Dales and all its glory, for generations to cherish. From many years ago, understanding the flora and fauna of the adventure trail with a local nature group, the clues and fairy stories of Studfold’s secret woodlands started, and now keep on growing.
It’s been love, devotion, and “hard graft” that has created The Nidderdale Experience, as it is today. “It makes us so happy to hear the children giggling as they walk up the trail. Family countryside experiences creates such wonderful memories. We’re so proud of that, and that those families want to come back year after year”, says Anne.
“It’s fantastic when we win another award recognising how special Studfold is.”
Studfold is not only a one-of-a-kind family attraction and holiday destination, it’s a place to love and learn about the countryside, with the care and responsibility that goes with it. Respect and thought for the environment and community features in everything at Studfold. The onsite Nidderdale Way Cafe is run by a local family, where all cakes and snacks are homemade.
“We deliver picnics to the trail, so people don’t have to carry them around. And put tea and coffee facilities in the barn, with an honesty box, so adults can relax with a cuppa while the children run around. It’s the little things that count and make a day special. We want everyone who visits to feel they’ve had that special time.”
Studfold’s Nidderdale Experience is like no other. Fairies and fauna, fire pits and marshmallows, stars and sing-songs, friendly voices and get-togethers around the pizza oven. All of these things, in one of the most wonderful, natural places you could ever visit. Anne and Ian coined the phrase a few years ago to describe Studfold, and it’s as true today as it was then. “There’s nowt quite like it!”