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The Sorting Office | Luxury Self-Catering Cottage | The New Forest

The Sorting Office

Fordingbridge, New Forest, Hampshire, UK

A gingerbread house with thatched roof set on the fringes of the New Forest which, from the outside, could very easily have been plucked from the pages of Hansel and Gretel. Through the stable door and fairytale charm makes way for crisp luxury interiors and chic country living; The Sorting Office is a rural self-catering retreat which ticks all the boxes for an escape from the city.


Built in the mid-18th century, this former village Post Office serviced the residents of Whitsbury from the 1930s before retiring from public duty. Now, The Sorting Office waltzes to a slower tempo, confident in its stature, wise in its age and with beauty flowing throughout. A leisurely self-catering cottage in which to reside, push open the blue front door and float from the kitchen, to the cosy beamed lounge and out to the private garden with nothing on the agenda but thumbing a novel in peace.


Cool whites and charcoal greys blend with aged timber beams and inglenook fireplace in the original part of the cottage while the kitchen melds the modern extension so perfectly with history that it feels as though it has been there forever. With hanging greenery, a 1920’s style cocktail trolley and bounty of natural light, the garden room is sure to be the chosen spot for morning coffees and warming mulled drinks on crisp autumn evenings before retreating to one of the two luxury bedrooms.


Bordered by thick greenery, a small but perfectly formed garden wraps around the back of The Sorting Office, offering views of the surrounding countryside, while horses from the neighbouring stud farm nosily peer across the fence. Through the garden gate and a narrow country footpath leads to 13th century St Leonard's church where walkers can join an ancient pilgrimage path across rolling hills to either Salisbury or Fordingbridge; the northern gateway to the New Forest National Park. 

The Facts

  • SleepsUp to 4 guests
    From £1,695 per week, £1,250 per short break
  • Alternative group optionUp to 2 guests
  • Bedrooms and bathroomsThere are two bedrooms on the first floor of the cottage; one with super king-size bed and one with king-size bed. There is one family bathroom with a bath and separate shower and one separate WC on the ground floor.
    View bedrooms
  • PetsSorry, no pets
  • Arrivals and departuresArrival Day: FridayArrival Time: 4pmDeparture Time: 10amTimes may vary due to Covid-19 requirements, please refer to your booking.
  • FamilySorry, no children or babies
  • PracticalitiesThere is parking for up to two cars at the front of the property. Please note, in keeping with the cottage, the drive is rustic and may not be suitable for all cars, however, further on-road parking is available if required. The kitchen includes an electric oven and hob, fridge-freezer, microwave, dishwasher and washer-dryer. Due to the nature of this 18th century cottage, there are some low ceilings and a narrow cottage staircase.
  • Homestay includesLuxury welcome hamper of local treats, 44" LG Smart TV with Netflix, Bose CD and Radio player, Bose Bluetooth speaker, iPad, Dualit coffee machine, luxury bed linen and towels, WiFi, Weber gas barbecue, recipe books...House book - your property and destination guideDiscover more little luxuries
  • Additional extrasA handpicked selection of unique experiences are available at this property.
  • Other informationProperty terms and conditionsFrequently asked questionsCheck mobile signalRecommend to a friend

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Retreat to the bright garden room
Say hello to your friendly neighbours

Prices & Availability


Hampshire´s northern gateway to the New Forest National Park, Fordingbridge was once a centre for trade and smuggling. Now, the town is surrounded by an abundance of wildlife and is the perfect springboard for cyclers and walkers.

View on maps


Getting there

  • On the Map The Sorting Office sits in the little village of Whitsbury, just under four miles from Fordingbridge near the New Forest National Park.
  • By Car The property is just over two hours down the M3 and M27 from central London.
  • By Train The nearest train station is Salisbury, 12 miles away from the cottage.
  • By Air International airports can be found at Bristol and Gatwick, both around 2 hours' drive away.

From the owner

“The Sorting Office is a peaceful retreat from the bustle of everyday life and we find the natural beauty of the place to be most inspiring.”

From the owner

When here, we delight in watching nature flourish all around, from the majestic racehorses leaning over the garden fence to hares bobbing about in the long grass and even the occasional deer which ventures up the drive.

When we first saw the cottage we fell in love with its romantic location and beauty. Whenever we walk up the footpath opposite the cottage at sunset we look back over the brow of the hill and are reminded how charming it is. It glows in the evening sun and nestles so elegantly among the surrounding trees; it's easy to see how quickly we fell head over heels!

As artists, many of our works in the property are inspired by the house and its surrounding environments, we hope you enjoy gazing at them over a morning coffee.

We have certainly found The Sorting Office to be a restful escape from city dwelling and hope you enjoy the tranquillity of the house as much as we do.

Simon and Jude

Owner recommendations

Live like a local, discovering the best hidden gem restaurants, walks and attractions during your holiday in Fordingbridge with an insider’s perspective.

Ritual Feast, New Forest
To Eat

Ritual Feast, New Forest

An off-grid, open-air restaurant which pops up in beautiful locations across the county. Secret until two weeks before the event, booking in advance is essential! An experience not to be missed, sign up on the website to be in the know.

Explore the New Forest
To Do

Explore the New Forest

Whether by foot, bicycle, or horseback, explore this National Park and its many treasures. For the young at heart, two water parks with inflatables, trampolines and jumping points offer belly-aching laughter.

Breamore House
To See

Breamore House

Walk up the winding drive, past a twisted 1000 year old yew tree and into this Elizabethan manor (used as a film location for many a period drama) on the edge of the New Forest. History buffs will be in their element.

The Cartwheel Inn, Whitsbury
To Eat

The Cartwheel Inn, Whitsbury

Just a five minute ramble away, this country inn is a firm favourite with the locals for its fantastic selection of tipples, fine food and sunny beer garden. Don´t miss the Sunday roast.

Unique extras

Enhance your stay with a unique experience from one of our preferred suppliers. From professional in-house chefs to luxury at-home spa therapists and wine delivered to the door, see what’s on offer for your bespoke escape.


Below are a selection of features in which Unique Homestays has appeared. If you would like to feature the property in an editorial capacity, please contact the marketing team on +44 (0)1637 882014.

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Disclaimer: These particulars, whilst believed to be accurate, are set as a guideline so should not be relied upon as a statement of fact. The photographs show aspects of the property at the time they were taken and it should not be assumed that the property remains precisely as displayed. If there are points of particular importance that need clarifying before you book, please contact us.

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