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Accommodation Details Kirkby Stephen Youth Hostel
Fletcher Hill, Kirkby Stephen CA17 4QQ
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Comments by walkers who stayed at Kirkby Stephen Youth Hostel in Kirkby Stephen on The Coast to Coast Path
Basic accommodation right in the center of town. The communal area is quite nice, in the old church. Good kitchen and all facilities. But the rooms were a bit cold and the bunk beds not that comfortable.
We had dinner at the indian place in town which was a welcome change after the pubfood of the last few days, every pub seems to have a similar menu :-)
Erik & Sietske, left on 23 May 2014
Good basic accommodation , were able to get in early in foul weather a godsend. Good large kitchen and a coop over the road open till late.
Richard Bloore , left on 09 October 2013
so just come from the kings arms hotel. we would both like to say that you need to look at what you are paying for and the work she is trying to do here. i unfortunately can not remember her name but she is trying to convert this old church into a hostel, our twin room was large but very basic. our beds were clean and we had a very very good nights sleep. it has a very easy going atmosphere and she has got great plans for it and loves walking and meeting people. so no its not best, but we would stop here again and wish her all the best in turning the old church into a great little hostel. next keld bunkhouse.
ALAN & PAUL, left on 26 July 2013
We walked the entire C2C path and stayed at 11 B&Bs and this was by far the worst value. This hostel was very disappointing. I have stayed in a lot of hostels in my time, and never one this poor. The loo seats and doors were broken, (which were unisex - including the shower) my daughter found a flea in her bed, and it was drab, with nowhere to relax. We were kept awake all night, not by people, but by an extremely noisy water pipe, which cut in intermittently. You are also charged an extra 1 for towels. I would not recommend this as accommodation after a 21 mile hike. The positive is that it is centrally located and across the road from the Coop.
The Barnes family, left on 24 July 2013
This was the only place left coz of Appleby Fair on the weekend we arrived.
Typical youth hostel and to an old codger like me it was not suitable. I like some home comforts, didn't find any here.
Keith Evans, left on 09 July 2013
This is the worst youth hostel I have ever stayed in or even seen. I arrived to a note on the door, stating the code to enter the hostel as the owner and her daughter were out for the night. My bag was just inside - it could easily have been stolen! The hostel was so cold that I didn't stop shivering until I had 3 duvets and a base layer on. I attempted to dry out some of my kit and found the drying room to be the coldest room in the house. I second the other comment about the towels, I wouldn't have dried a dog with one. The owner turned up the next day, and promptly left an hour later. The heating was only turned slightly when other guests showed up. Unfortunately I had a rest day here too. I met up with a man called Steve whom nearly quit walking because he was so discouraged by the hostel. NEVER AGAIN!
Eloise Bartlett, left on 04 September 2012
Grim. Disorganised and very basic. Our room the ensuite was run down and grubby The bed sheets where not clean and I had to hunt for others. The towels would be ok for drying a dog on.

We thought we we have to hunt for breakfast and then the owner turned up at the very last minute.

Avoid if you can

Gary - August 2011, left on 23 August 2011
Very comfortable for the price. We had to make our beds but they were clean and comfortable. There was plenty of hot water. We could help ourselves to tea and coffee in the well equipped kitchen. Breakfast was served efficiently and it was a good meal. Sandwiches for packed lunches were reasonably priced and made to order. What's not to like? The decor could do with an update but after a day's walking that wasn't top of our priorities.
Sheila, left on 27 July 2011
Great drying room. Good value. Room small and basic but adequate. Near to all facilities. Great lounge and honesty breakfast. All 4 of us enjoyed our stay. Quiet , clean and plenty of hot water. Would stay again. Good value!!!
Terry Field, left on 22 July 2011
Adequate but a bit grim. Run-down and tatty but the staff were pleasant and the breakfast was good. Not good value for money. Needs to either get better or be cheaper. Date of stay: June 2011.
Robert Norman, left on 21 June 2011
i would agree that this hostel is a bit run down, but to be honest if you are a walker or cyclist, it will suit your needs. The beds were perfectly comfortable, the kitchen and common room well equipped and the wash facilities were no worse than any other yha i've stayed in. You get what you pay for, and after 19 hot miles from Shap, I could have slept in a shed!
Would reccomend the Indian restraunt next to the market square too.
anon, left on 20 June 2011
We stayed here overnight on 29 May 2011. What a warm a friendly welcome, the first place visited that carried your cases to the room for you. We were met in front of the house and shown into the back garden to remove our boots for storage in the tiled porch. We were then given tea and jam sponge to restore our weary bodies. The rooms were outstandingly clean with TV and the usual tea/coffee making facilities. We had an ensuite shower but there was also a bath across the landing, if required.I did a bit of washing and was allowed to hang it out on the line but also had the items spin dried first. Breakfast was really good. I left here thinking what really nice people and how it was the sort of place you would come back to with your wife. The room coast 66 for the two of us.
Michael Morby, left on 02 June 2011
We arrived at the hostel after a long and very wet day during our coast to coast walk. We found the hostel dark, dingy and not particularly welcoming. The bunkroom we stayed in was overcrowded and dismal.....a sleepless night followed. I did not enjoy sharing shower/toilet and washing facilities with men, the breakfast was not good and we were charged twice for the pleasure of staying in the hostel (after making two phone calls to the owner, who was not particularly helpful, a refund was made but a SAE had to be sent for the cheque!!!). Would definitely not stay there again.
Alison, left on 28 September 2010
We got off to a bad start with Denise when a previously e-mail arranged evening meal was denied. As a result we had a good meal in the Black Bull Hotel and a self catered continental breakfast in the morning.
Unusual building conversion gives interest to the place. I dont think much has been done since it opened in 1982. Old style YH sheets in adequate rooms at a reasonable price but the place seemed in need of a good clean, some decoration and a tidy up. The drying room was dependent on the boiler which did its job, but old newspapers were strewn about free standing heaters (fire hazard?), which matched the reception area. The fire exit was problematic and had been left open. A handy entrance for those who forget or haven't been given the front door code, but not much good for security. There are only guests on site at night. Pointing this out in a friendly manner to Denise was not appreciated. I would want to know the place had received some attention before staying again.
Bob Watts, left on 31 August 2010
Stayed here 13th August 2010. Well done Denise for running this place single-handedly. Interesting chapel conversion - works well. Basic but effective accommodation including family rooms and excellent drying room. Breakfast available or cook your own. Great
anon, left on 26 August 2010
We really enjoyed our stay here. I wanted to include a hostel on my trip and am glad I chose this one. We had an ensuite room that could sleep three and although this site states a twin, the room contained a double and a single bed. I can't believe really that we were only charged 18 each for this as thats the same price others were paying who I think shared bunk rooms and bathrooms.
We didn't eat here, so can't comment, but we were invited to help ourselves to anything in the kitchen and there was an honesty box to help her replace used items such as tea and coffee.
Rob & Emma, left on 23 June 2010
Well done Denise for taking it on but it seems a bit of a daunting task for one person to turn this place around. What I want to know is why the YHA gave up on this hostel which seems to have so much going for it. Centrally located in a town crying out for some good restaurants, interesting building, on the C2C. Well anyway I stayed there but it was all a bit depressing really.
Peter - left on August 29th 2009, left on 10 September 2009
A bit of a mixed bag this one. The positives - unusual building gives it character, good location and cheap. Negatives - kitchen isn't great for the self-caterers, still uses those silly old-style YHA sleep-sheets. I'd happily stay again, but it's not one of my highlights from the walk...
GJ, left on 28 August 2009
This independent hostel was unusual, an interesting place to stay. I arrived late (7:30) and Denise had gone home and locked up, but left her phone number to call. Luckily another guest lent me a phone and unlocked the door for me, and Denise directed me to a private room in the roof and invited me to help myself to towels. The upstairs is a bit run down, but there was plenty of room and privacy and the dining room was unique with its pews. Denise turns up in the morning to cook up a good breakfast. Bit cheaper than the usual YHA hostels (and the beds have the old style youth hostel sheet bags) but it's good value and in a great location in the centre of town. I'd stay there again.

Make sure to see St Stephen's church before you leave. It's a long haul over the moors to the next cup of tea so don't leave town without supplies.
GW Ottawa, left on 20 July 2009
Since this hostel was sold Denise, the owner, has really turned it around. She's systematically doing changes to improve all aspects of the building. There's an honesty box for breakfast, and it's worth staying here just to explore the wonderful building. She deserves to succeed; so stay here when you come through Kirkby Stephen and give it a try; there's a well stocked Co-op opposite for your tea & butties the next day.
Gordon & Vicky left Sept 12th 2008, left on 28 September 2008
Quirky hostel and quirky manager, loved them both, probably the most memorable hostel on the walk. Just glad of the experience as it looks to be another YHA hostel lost.
No recommendations for food in Kirkby Stephen, we ended up with a Chinese take away in the hostel, which was more than compensated for by the good company. Left 15.6.06
Mark Chapman/Mark Warford, left on 02 November 2006
Great hostel - my favourite hostel of the trip. What on earth are the YHA thinking closing somewhere like this? They are losing two great assets - the hostel building itself, and Clare the manager.
Ed Curl, left on 06 May 2006
We arrived at the youth hostel having had less than ten hours' sleep in the last four or five days, but even that couldn't spoil our arrival. The hostel was an oasis of cool, dark comfort on a hot, tiring journey, further accented by clean rooms and a superb breakfast. My only regret? That I ate dinner in a lousy hotel pub instead of here!
Madeline, left on 27 March 2006
Great youth hostel and very friendly welcome, nothing too much trouble, even though she was running it all alone.

Lovely clean rooms, good breakfast, good facilities.
Chrissy, left on 28 September 2005
A most unusual place to stay but as an old chapel it would be! Clare the warden is just so helpful and jolly and has left a femine touch with things like flowers in the loos.

One of the better hostels for friendliness on the walk. Only charged us 30p each for breakfast as we we not having a full english. What a nice lass.
Mike, left on 29 August 2005
The warden was very friendly and helpful. She put out a cold breakfast for us, as we needed to set off early. She also gave us towels when our bag failed to arrive. All in all, we had a bad day, but she made it better!
Rowan and Stephen, left on 22 July 2005
Good value as always, situation in heart of town, with pubs,shops nearby. Good facilities for cooking your own food.
Tom Smyth, left on 30 May 2005
Well run youth hostel. Clare (manager) was jolly and helpful. Does an exceptional job single handedly. Small hostel with a friendly atmosphere. Clean and well organised. Excellent evening meal Cumberland sausage and mash! Would stay here again and recommend it.
Tess & Mick Starkey, left on 04 September 2004
Cool place, lots of character (read: could have been cleaner? not so bad, just not the best). We had scheduled a rest day there and longed to sleep in but got kicked out at 10--of course, we should have known better and she was nice about it, so thanks for that. There are lots of places here to bum around--nice library in the YHA, good parks in Kirkby Stephen, fine church and grounds, etc.
Jennifer, left on 09 July 2004
Excellent accomodation very friendly and clean. The warden was very helpful.
Sandy Pearson, left on 24 June 2004
Amazing place, first time I have eaten in the aisles!, Warden was very helpful and cheerful even though she was the sole staff member, thanks.
Nigel Broadbent, left on 25 August 2003
Never slept in a pulpit before - lovely hostel in an old church.
David Hall, left on 20 August 2003
Clare was the most welcoming and friendly youth hostel warden on out walk. An extremely well-run and comfortable hostel.
Sarah, left on 04 August 2003
Great place to stay. We took an extra day in Kirby Stephen to look around as is very interesting. If you get a chance stop by the small shop entitled " God Save the Queen" Only open for a few hours in the afternoon but the owner is worth the visit. the facility at the hostel was clean, comfortable and as we said a great place to stay.
w. Friel, left on 24 July 2003
Excellent hostel, run efficiently single handed by Claire. Well behaved girls school also there. May 2003
Sally and Michael Woodley, left on 14 June 2003
Very interesting building, we had a twin room in the Belfry. Clean, comfortable and good facilities (shower, toilets, kitchen, drying room etc). Cannot comment on food as we ate out but other guests seemed very happy. Recommended.
Emma and Neil, left on 17 October 2002
Lovely setting , staff very friendly and helpful , novel restaurant - dining chairs are the old pews! Highly recommended.
Ray Baldwin, left on 08 September 2002
Odd youth hostel in a church, but the second best shower on the route with very friendly people. If you stop in Kirkby Stephen try the brilliant Old Forge Restaurant - and ask the owner about the two limping lads with bad beards that came in the night it chucked it down.
Wesley Ball, left on 14 August 2002
Tasteful accomodation in a converted church. Rooms clean and tidy and in good condition.
Leanne & Daniel, left on 06 August 2002


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