Sykes Cottages- Where it all began

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For over 25 years, Sykes Cottages have been providing some of the UK’s finest cottage holidays. Here in the marketing department of Sykes HQ, statements like this have become something of a mantra, a quick way to grab the reader’s attention and show them we mean business. But the beauty of the matter is, we really have been supplying holiday cottages for 25 years, or should I say, some of us have…

The original Sykes Cottages brochures, featuring Clive's hand drawn illustrations.

The original Sykes Cottages brochures, featuring Clive’s hand drawn illustrations.

Back in the late 80s/ early 90s, Clive Sykes and his mum were busy beavering away on their then small holiday lettings agency, the aptly named ‘Cottage Holidays’. They took their own holiday cottages, as well as those of friends, and rented them out to holidaymakers across the UK who were looking for affordable, convenient and comfortable self-catering accommodation in and around the Yorkshire Dales.

Brochure

A holiday cottage sketch

Their devotion and commitment to their trade was apparent from the word go. Single-handedly, Clive sketched line drawings of every one of the properties, as well as illustrations for the company’s debut brochure, which was released in 1992- just think of the patience! It was this dedication and staunch will to succeed that saw the swift expansion of the company, and with the much better suited title of Sykes Cottages, this kitchen table enterprise soon began to gain ground.

And when I say ground, that’s just what I mean. Originally geared towards properties in Northern England, Sykes Cottages began to expand to other parts of the UK and by 1994, had accumulated a handful of cottages in the Peak District, Northumbria and Southern Scotland. By word of mouth and a rising prestige, Sykes Cottages recruited more and more holiday cottage owners who had heard about the agency’s commitment and hard work in delivering great bookings for their loyal cottage owners.

And so it continued, and Clive’s harrying for unbeatable service for both customers and owners saw the company expand to all four corners of the UK. As it stands today, Sykes has 4,581 self-catering cottages to rent across the UK and Ireland, with this figure set to rise. And yet, even after this massive growth, Clive himself is still central to the daily running of this family business.

 Sykes Cottages- The Future

Now based in the historic city of Chester, Sykes Cottages has developed into a nationally renowned business employing over one hundred people, all of whom share Clive’s original passion for providing the very best cottage holidays. We combine the latest technology with three decades of UK holiday know-how to provide our customers and our owners with an unrivalled level of service, something which saw us win the British Travel Award for Best Large UK Cottage/ Self Catering Booking Company in 2013.

The latest Sykes Cottages brochures, which are available by region.

The latest Sykes Cottages brochures, which are available by region.

With our newly-designed website and an updated mobile app on the way, it’s never been easier to rent one of our holiday cottages. But for all our technical advancements, we still believe that nothing beats talking to our customers direct. That’s why we have a dedicated call centre open seven days a week where you can call us for help and advice whenever you need it.  Our company may have seen significant growth, but we’ll never forget where our journey began.

To find out more about the history of Sykes Cottages, or for more information about our latest developments, click here.

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Jonathan Tuplin

By Jonathan Tuplin

Jonathan is a lover of books, music and good food. Originally from Yorkshire, there's nothing he likes more than a cycle in the country. One of his favourite spots in the UK is Tenby, where he spent many a happy holiday as a child.

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