When we moved to the farm in May 2013 the cottage hadn’t been lived in for a number of years so we had to do a little bit of work prior to moving in. We installed a wood burning stove, and a new gas combi boiler heating system, also re-plastered walls and decorated throughout. We lived in the farm cottage for 3 years and moved out in May 2016 once the renovation work was completed on the farmhouse.
We then decided to look into the possibility of turning the cottage into holiday accommodation for tourists and people visiting the area. Market research showed us that there is a lack of accommodation in the area but a need for self-catering accommodation.
In October 2016 we applied to LEADER for grant funding to help us finance the refurbishment of the cottage into holiday accommodation. We were successfully awarded 50% funding and started work on the cottage in December 2016. The work was completed by the end of April 2017 and our first visitors arrived in July 2017. We achieved an occupancy rate of 88% in our first 6 months and have never looked back.
The refurbishment involved replacing the conservatory, changing the layout of the bathroom, fitting a new bathroom suite, renewing the wooden floor in the master bedroom, renewing skirtings and internal doors, applying a damp proof course, masonry work, renewing gutters, plumbing work, landscaping, erecting a new garden fence, installation of a hot tub and summerhouse and decorating throughout. The cottage was also fully furnished and equipped to accommodate visitors on a self-catering basis.
We have had many lovely comments from visitors who have enjoyed staying at our cottage, which has made all the work worthwhile.
In October 2019 we opened our events venue at the farm to hold events such as weddings, parties and family gatherings. The cottage is available to rent for people attending events at the farm. Many couples getting married here have rented the cottage for the weekend of the wedding as it is a lovely setting for the bride/groom to get ready and makes a relaxing retreat for the happy couple on their wedding night.