It’s large, grand, surrounded by 800 acres and encircled by a moat… bursting with fish, topped with swans and bordered by weeping willows. Brinsop Court is like a fairytale. Built in the 13th century for the Tirrell family, the first wing was added 700 years later and the renovation of a full catering kitchen is underway now. If you fancy putting up here, make sure you bring 33 friends. This five-star country retreat, one helluva pad for a big celebration, is run by a sleek team: professional, generous, yet discreet. Space, books, games and sofas abound, in sitting rooms, in hallways, in the games room before the huge inglenook (one of many). The décor, in keeping with the history – Queen Anne ceiling in the dining room, carved panelling throughout – is enhanced by modern canvasses and sumptuous rugs. There are loads of logs, basketfuls of blankets, a courtyard with a pergola, and three kitchens, one per wing. As for the bedrooms, they range from large to vast, from ‘Hogwarts’ (child heaven) to the bridal suite, themed in lilac. You won’t be bored: tennis, jacuzzi, croquet, bikes to borrow, dogs to walk – bring yours!