How to book your stay



Please note – When you submit a booking via our online reservation system you will receive an automatically generated booking summary by email to the email address you provide in the booking form. This does not form a contract between us. A contract shall only arise when your booking is subsequently confirmed by post or email once the deposit payment has been received. We (the owners) will respond to booking requests promptly. Once the booking dates, cost and number and make-up of the party are agreed, we will agree the booking with the lead guest who will be responsible for the payment of the deposit. The lead guest must be at least 25 years of age at time of booking. The price quoted is for the entire property and not on a per person basis.
The contract for a short-term holiday rental will be between the owners of DARWIN COTTAGE (referred to as “us”, “we” or “Owner”) and the person making the booking and all members of the holiday party (referred to as “you” or “your”) in the following booking conditions. UK law will govern the Contract. The Contract will be subject to these booking conditions, and must be complied with. The person whose name is on the booking form (referred to as the “Lead guest”) agrees to take full responsibility for ensuring that all the following Terms and Conditions are adhered to by all members of the party. The Lead Guest must personally stay at the accommodation throughout the holiday and be at least 25 years of age at the time of booking. The names, addresses and ages of all members of the party must be shared with the Owners on request. When you submit a booking via our online reservation system you will receive an automatically generated booking summary by email to the email address you provide in the booking form. This does not form a contract between us. Telephone and email reservations are held for 7 days pending receipt of a deposit. A contract shall only arise when your booking is subsequently confirmed by post or email once the deposit has been received.
From September to May we offer 3 night short breaks from Friday to Monday, 2 night short breaks from Friday or Saturday and 3 or 4 night short breaks from Monday to Thursday or Friday. Short breaks are also available within 28 days of arrival at other times of the year.
Bookings are classed as being confirmed on completion of the booking details and receiving the deposit of 25% of the holiday cost. The balance of the rental is due for payment 56 days before the arrival date; you will be sent email notification that the balance is due. If your payment has not been received 56 days before the commencement date and we do not hear from you, your booking will be cancelled and the dates made available for rebooking. If the booking is made within 56 days of the arrival date then payment will be due in full within 4 days. No entry to properties will be allowed without payment, in full, being cleared beforehand.
Cancellations must be immediately notified to us preferably by email as the date it is received is the date the cancellation will be actioned..

  1. If your booking has to be cancelled because Darwin Cottage is put under Government restrictions and has to close before the period of your booking:

You will be refunded in full

  1. In the event that your given address (lead guest) is put into Local/Regional lockdown, rendering you unable to travel:

You will be refunded in full

  1. If your booking has to be cancelled because Darwin Cottage has to close through Force Majeure, meaning any of the following circumstances which may hinder or prevent the performance by us of the Contract, including but not limited to:
  2. acts of God, flood, drought, earthquake or other natural disaster;
    b) epidemic or pandemic;
    c) terrorist attack, civil war, civil commotion or riots, war threat of or preparation for war, armed conflict, imposition of sanctions, embargo, or breaking off of diplomatic relations;
    d) nuclear, chemical or biological contamination or sonic boom;
    e) any law or action taken by a government or public authority, including without limitation imposing a restriction, prohibition, or failing to grant a necessary licence or consent;
    f) collapse of all buildings, fire, explosion or accident;
    g) non-performance by our suppliers or contractors;

You will be refunded in full
If we have to terminate your holiday early for the above reasons you will be refunded part of the accommodation costs based on the time remaining of the booking. This will be the full extent of the liability of the Owners. No additional compensation, expenses or costs will be payable.

  1. Guest inability (or the inability of any, some or all of your intended party) or disinclination to travel to and stay at Darwin Cottage for any reason: This includes (but is not limited to) illness (including Covid), any requirement or recommendation to self-isolate or quarantine, shielding, a call to jury duty, military service, incarceration, change in personal or work circumstances, family emergencies, travel delays, vehicle breakdown, and delays with public transport. These remain at your risk as the lead guest and do not give rise to a right to cancel and receive a refund unless we re-let the property. Our payment of refunds in this instance will be subject to the sliding scale below. You are strongly recommended to take out your own travel insurance for UK holidays which covers booking cancellations and will give you the peace of mind that you will get your money back if you need to cancel your holiday. If you choose not to, then you accept responsibility for any loss that you may incur due to your cancellation. Single trip travel insurance is available at very affordable rates – even for guests with pre-existing medical conditions. There are many comparison sites available to obtain reasonably priced cover to suit your party’s requirements.

Cancellation fees:

Number of days before start of booking that notification of cancellation is received in writingThe percentage of the total booking value payable by the guest
90 days +   5% of booking cost
57-90 days 25% of booking cost
43-56 days 50% of booking cost
29-42 days 75% of booking cost
8-28 days 85% of booking cost
3-7 days 95% of booking cost
0-2 days100% of booking cost

Any amounts due for refund will be made within 14 days of receipt of written notification to us (Darwin Cottage Owners).
On receipt of the cancellation, the above table states the amount that the lead guest remains liable for at that time. Darwin Cottage will use reasonable endeavours to obtain a replacement booking. In the event that Darwin Cottage is successful in rebooking the cancelled dates, we will refund to the lead guest the amount paid less 5% and less the difference in price between the Guest’s booking and the replacement booking if one is made and it is a lower amount.

Refund example if Darwin Cottage is rebooked
Original Booking amount£500
Rebooking amount£450
Rebooking shortfall-£50
Refund= (Original Booking amount – Rebooking shortfall – 5%)£425

Darwin Cottage, its employees and representatives shall not be liable to you or your party for loss, damage to property or vehicles howsoever arising. You must take all necessary steps to safeguard yourselves and your personal property.
You must notify us in writing of any third party services that you intend to utilise during your stay at Darwin Cottage at the property or within the grounds. The guest is responsible for ensuring that the third party service they are utilising has a Public and Products Liability policy in force for at least £5,000,000 and must show us proof of such policy before they are permitted on the premises to carry out their services. Darwin Cottage and us (the owners) accept no liability for the activities of these third party suppliers even if we have recommended them to you.
We shall be allowed reasonable right of entry to the property at all reasonable times for purposes of inspection or to carry out any necessary repairs or maintenance. We will notify you in advance whenever possible and routine repairs and maintenance will be scheduled for changeover days wherever feasible.
The website is as accurate as possible but cannot be warranted, nor do the descriptions form any contract. Whilst every effort is made to ensure accuracy of property descriptions and images, the facilities and services may alter. We reserve the right to alter or improve any of the subjects without notice.
You may access the property from 16.00 hours on the day of arrival as confirmed at time of booking, (earlier arrivals are strictly by arrangement only). We will also notify you on the day if the property is ready earlier. Please note that departure is by 10.00am on your final day as confirmed at time of booking, (again, later departures are strictly by arrangement only). We need this time to ensure that the cottage is ready for your arrival after the previous guests. On departure, you are requested to leave the accommodation in a clean and tidy condition. This includes washing up, loading the dishwasher, placing rubbish in bin liners and putting in outside bins, ensuring ovens and barbecue are clean and free from grease. We reserve the right to make a charge of £35 for extra cleaning if the accommodation is not left in a satisfactory condition. The property is let for the purposes of a holiday let. ‘Holiday letting’ is defined in the Housing Act 1988 as ‘a tenancy the purpose of which is to confer on the tenant the right to occupy the dwelling house for a holiday’. The booking agreement confers the right to occupy the accommodation for the agreed period only. You undertake to use the property solely for its purpose as self-catering accommodation and to accept the Owner’s right to refuse access to the accommodation to any person, whether the Responsible Person or guest of the Responsible Person, deemed unsuitable. Causing a nuisance or disturbance to neighbours or any unreasonable behaviour may result in the Owner requiring the Responsible Person or their guests to leave Darwin Cottage.
Under no circumstances may more than the maximum number of persons stated on the Darwin Cottage website occupy the property overnight (four people plus an infant in a travel cot), unless by prior arrangement with the Owners. In which case there may be an additional charge at the Owners discretion, and the arrangement must be confirmed in writing. We reserve the right to refuse admittance if this condition is not observed. It is acceptable for you to receive a reasonable number of guests during the day should you have friends or family staying nearby, but please let us know in writing that you will be receiving guests. You are responsible for their behaviour and conduct at the property and we reserve the right to ask badly behaved guests to leave. 
Children under the age of 16 must be supervised by their parents/guardians at all times. Children must not be left alone in the cottage, garden, driveway or courtyard.
You are responsible for the property and are expected to take all reasonable care of its furniture, pictures, fittings and effects, in or on the property. You must leave them in the same state of repair and in the same clean and tidy condition at the end of the rental period as at the beginning. You undertake to leave the property secure if left unoccupied during the period of let. You must not use the properties for any dangerous, offensive, noxious, noisy, immoral activities or carry on there any act that may be a nuisance or annoyance to the owner or other neighbouring properties.
You are legally bound to reimburse us for replacement, repair or extra cleaning costs on demand (although we would not charge you for the odd glass or plate). If you lose a key we will replace it upon you paying for the cutting of a new one.
The use of FIREWORKS, SKY LANTERNS and DRONES are prohibited on the grounds of Darwin Cottage and Newton House due to risk towards dry arable crops and farm animals, in particular the large number of horses in the village. Drones are not permitted in order to protect the privacy of the owners and nearby neighbours.
Smoking and/or vaping is not permitted in the cottage or within 5 metres of any open window to the cottage or Newton House. Smoking/vaping is permitted in the courtyard or under the loggia if it is raining, but cigarette butts must be disposed of in a safe and tidy manner.


An electric vehicle is one which requires connection to mains power to recharge. This includes fully rechargeable and plug-in hybrid cars, motorbikes, buggies, scooters, mopeds and bicycles.

For fire safety reasons, the use of domestic chargers commonly known as “granny chargers“ or “trickle chargers“ are strictly forbidden at the property.

At the moment, we do not currently have on-site charging facilities, so you must make your own arrangements for EV charging at a dedicated charging point. The closest charge points to the property are:

Hampden Park – Tesco’s Metro

Eastbourne – Waitrose, *Railway station car park, *The Beacon Shopping Centre car park,

The Hydro Hotel (90 minutes limit)

Seaford – Morrisons

Newhaven – Sainsbury’s

*parking charges will apply 

Internet access is provided for guests’ reasonable and lawful use. The broadband is hard wired into the cottage with a connection to the wireless booster. Speeds should be reasonably fast and guests can connect to the Ethernet if they bring their own cable with them. However, we are in a rural location and sometimes connection is slower than expected especially when it is raining. Expect download speeds of up to 30Mbps or faster if using the Ethernet connection, but these speeds cannot be guaranteed.
Pets are not allowed in any area of the grounds of Darwin Cottage and Newton House.
Registered guide and support dogs belonging to those with visual and hearing impairments are allowed at Darwin Cottage even though the property description states that pets are not allowed. Customers with allergies should be aware that Darwin Cottage cannot guarantee that a registered guide and/or support dog has not stayed in the property nor can Darwin Cottage accept any liability for any suffering which may occur as a result of such animals having been present. Although to date there have been no animals in the property (October 2023). Please notify us at time of booking that you will be bringing a guide or support dog as additional cleaning staff will need to be arranged for checkout due to the owners themselves being severely allergic to dogs.
See our Privacy Policy available on our website.
See our Cookie policy available on our website.
Every effort is made to ensure that you have an enjoyable stay. However, if you have any problem or cause for complaint, it is essential that you contact us immediately to give us the chance to resolve it. We value your custom and want you to return. We are on site, and will do our best to resolve any problem as soon as we can.

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