The story of how an intangible dream has evolved into solid reality.Pompous I know, but work with me here.
When we started thinking about making the huge move from Kent to Somewhere Else (at that time we were looking at Herefordshire), one of the things on the list was enough space to start a small glamping site so that the new place could pay its way. We looked at houses with one or two acres, then got hooked on the idea of a smallholding with chickens and bees. A veg plot was a must of course. And why not some sheep while we’re at it? Suddenly two acres was not going to be enough. As we upped the acreage, the houses got shabbier until we reached a point where we viewed an uninhabitable 200 year old cottage which needed complete renovation (as did the static caravan which came with it – ‘do up’ the caravan in order to ‘do up’ the house…), BUT it came with ten acres!
Eventually, having slightly expanded the search area on rightmove, we landed on what we reckon is the jackpot. Four acres – plenty for glamping and all our current smallholding dreams, and a house which is the right mix of characterful and still standing.
Last year we ummed and ahhed about the glamping – should we have bell tents or yurts? Slight risk of blowing down in the wind and where do we put the loos? What about pods or lodges? They wouldn’t look quite right somehow. Shepherd’s hut? Bingo! Right sort of look for a field, sturdy enough to be very cosy and we’ll get one with an ensuite which solves the loo problem (never a good thing to have a problem with).
Next step was finding one. We looked at a couple of second hand huts but none were quite right. Then we stumbled across Shropshire Shepherds Huts and Pods which turned out to be just over the hill from us. A few conversations and a trip to the workshop later and we handed over a rough plan of what we wanted. A couple of months after that, we got a call to say it was being built and did we want to come and see? Did we ever!!
When I said ‘rough plan’, it was essentially that – a drawing Luke did one evening with a rectangular box on it and labels like ‘bed’, ‘sink’ and ‘lots of windows please’. No measurements or anything technical. What we saw under construction was miraculously a real life 3D version of our basic drawing. Amazing.
A week later, after preparing the site, we were all hanging around at the top of the lane waiting eagerly for the hut to turn up on its trailer. Turn up it did, and was skilfully winched into place.
It is amazing inside and has many windows, through which the view looks rather fetching. Now we are in the process of connecting all the water and waste pipes, electric cables and planning the fun things like what colour bunting should we have and how many saucepans? It will be ready very soon and I cannot wait to try it out for myself! All in the name of research of course.