Something For Everyone…
It was a wet and windy day so what better time than to take a trip out to visit The Courtyard, writes Tracy Hargreaves. Photography: Paul Currie
The Courtyard is a new retail destination right in the heart of the West Lancashire village of Tarleton. It’s the perfect place to spend the afternoon, mooching around the departments or simply relaxing with a cuppa and something to eat.
There’s plenty of free parking, either on site or on the village car park across the road. They even have dedicated spaces for coaches, as it’s conveniently located just off the A59 between Southport and Preston, so it’s the ideal stop off. On arriving at The Courtyard as you walk into the entrance the first things that hit you are the pleasant smells of coffee and candles. On the left hand side is The Barn Bistro, which I will come back to later, straight ahead is a staircase which takes you up one floor to an impressive range of luggage and lighting and if you turn right you walk through an array of Yankee candles, many with seasonal scents, including cranberry ice, Christmas garland, snowflake cookie and winter glow. It instantly puts you in a festive mood.
From here I make my way into the shoes, boots, purses, scarfs and bags department. There are items here which you probably won’t find on the high street, mixed with quality brand names such as Sketchers and Rieker at value for money prices. I soon realise there are some great Christmas gift ideas and I could be in here a while.
The Courtyard caters for the slightly older audience of 40+ and so its products reflect this. The atmosphere is laid back as customers take their time looking round, so you can forget the hustle and bustle of the bigger towns, this is different retail experience.
I carry on into ladieswear. I recognise the brands instantly, Klass, Roman, Annabelle, Just Elegance to name just a few, so there’s no excuse not to find that perfect outfit for your Christmas party. But you can’t have a new outfit without new shoes. The footwear department offers a large selection of quality branded footwear and if you can’t find what you are looking for, ask a member of staff who will try and order it in for you. And the men aren’t left out either. From chinos to cords to shirts and jackets, there’s a great range to choose from.
Next is cookware. With all the home essentials and more, it‘s an opportunity to stock up your kitchen or choose something for your dining area from the Portmeirion range.
The Courtyard is bigger than you think as you wander around, you turn another corner and are surprised at what you come to next. There really is something for everyone. I’m now in the bedding and textiles section which is full of cushions, quilts and curtains from brands like Dorma and Rectella, all at great discounted prices. And for those who want to get into the festive spirit, why not treat yourself to some new Christmas bedding.
My favourite area was the gifts and homewares. From Christmas tins of shortbread to candle advent calendars, Christmas cards to decorative accessories, it was full of present ideas and if you’re like me you will end up going home with one or two items.
After all that shopping, it was time to check out The Barn, where there’s a choice of eating in the bistro or a snack in the coffee shop. All the food is locally sourced, where possible, and handmade. You could choose from a light bite of panini, sandwiches, soup or a cake, or something heartier, like fish and chips, Lancashire hotpot or one of the daily specials. There is also a Christmas menu on offer from November to December. Two courses at £14.95 and three courses £17.95. What’s more The Barn is licensed so you can enjoy a glass of wine or a bottled beer with your meal.
If you are looking for a different retail experience, then a visit to The Courtyard is a must. You won’t be disappointed.
94 Church Road
Tarleton PR4 6UP
Mon to Sat: 9.30am-5.30pm
Tue to Sat: 9.30am-4.30pm
Mon and Sun: 11.00am-4.00pm