We’re often blown away by how our shepherd huts turn out. Whether they become offices, lodges, playrooms, writing rooms, or glamping huts, the locations and personalities of the huts when they’re with their new owners shine through.
John and Alison have taken one of our huts and placed it in a pretty spectacular location. Read on to find out about Cornwall’s latest glamping paradise called Tregwelan, with views to die for!
About you: can you tell me a little bit about yourselves and your family?
We were both born and bred in North Cornwall and have lived in our present home since the Eighties.
What kind of hut do you have and why did you decide to get a shepherd’s hut?
We have a 18 foot Turnkey Hut with the classic oak cladding. We asked for an extra window and double doors to take full advantage of the view from the front of the hut. We also asked for the steel chassis rails and fixings to be galvanised as we felt this provided a far higher resistance to the corrosion from salty winds. We chose a shepherd’s hut because it blends with the agricultural character of the surrounding area. The Blackdown style with the oak chassis and traditional materials combined with really top build quality was the obvious choice.
What will the hut be used for, how many does it sleep, and what facilities does it have?
Tregwelan, our shepherd’s hut will primarily be used for rental but also as extra accommodation for visiting family and friends. It sleeps two but if a further couple wish to visit during the day, the hut is supplied with enough equipment & cater for cooking and dining for four. There is an induction hob, fridge, Dualit toaster, sink, kettle and DAB radio. The majority of the tableware has been made by John’s sister, Deborah, a skilled local potter. A wood-burner provides atmospheric heating for colder periods, but an electric panel heater is installed for instant heat on the chillier autumnal or wintry mornings. The double bed has an ingeniously designed (by Blackdown) pull-down mechanism and easily folds away to create a dining table and seating during the day. A heated towel rail in the surprisingly roomy en-suite shower-room has been added.
Outside at the rear is a unique barbeque made from an old cast iron water pipe. A wooden shelter lit with low voltage batteries enables BBQ use after dusk (and in the rain!) The granite faced fire pit at the front is a great place to keep warm in the evenings.
What makes your shepherd’s hut special and who is it aimed at?
The view and location make Tregwelan special, offering unique panoramic views over the popular Camel Estuary from Little Petherick Creek, past Padstow, across the water to Rock and up-stream towards Wadebridge. It stands on its own in the grounds of our property which is accessed down a private lane. The nearest neighbours are 200m away. It is secluded yet Padstow is only a 20 minute walk or 8 minute bike ride away along the Camel Trail, which is accessed 150 yds down the lane from the doorstep. Our target market is couples who wish to take chill-out breaks between 3 and 7 nights in peace, quiet and ultimate simple comfort. Wifi is in the hut for those who want it!
Are you decorating the hut yourselves? Can you tell me a little bit about its interior design?
Tregwelan is one of Blackdown’s Turnkey Huts, all ready to go once power and plumbing are connected . However, we enjoyed adding personal touches to convey what we feel is a unique, intimate and cosy countryside retreat. A blend of new and vintage materials and items have been selected to create an atmosphere which is sympathetic to the ethos of a shepherd’s hut but at the same time, contemporary. We chose roller blinds to give privacy but also to maximise the amount of light into the hut and not obstruct the views across the Camel Estuary. Photos displayed in Tregwelan Shepherd’s Hut reflect the owners’ family connections with this area of the Camel Estuary over the last 110 years.
What do you love about shepherd’s huts and how will yours add to your business?
Shepherd huts seem to fit in anywhere. They are more robust than caravans and warmer with a charm that’s timeless. We decided to place one in our home to provide additional family accommodation and a means of providing extra income. We were always aware that our location could provide income and the Shepherd hut concept certainly seems to fit the bill. Additionally, being mobile accommodation, planning permission is only needed to use the hut for business purposes. The planning authority seemed pleased that the hut will promote tourism in the Camel Estuary.
What kind of experience will customers get when they stay with you?
Our home could have been built anywhere on the Tregonce headland in the 1930s but was placed in a location to take full advantage of the views. While it is totally on its own it is sufficiently close to the shoreline to feel connected to all the activities in Padstow and Rock while a distance apart to feel totally private and safe. We have abundant wildlife and birdwatchers can see a large selection of birdlife from the hut or along the Camel Trail where there are watching hides. Partridges, pheasants and ducks are often in the garden. Swallows are annual visitors, building their nests in the car port rafters! A family of stoats visited us a few years ago. The Camel Estuary has been said to enjoy more sun than most locations in Cornwall and it sometimes seems to have its own micro climate.
We have tried to make Tregwelan a relaxing place to spend time all year round. In many ways the Camel Estuary winters can be as beautiful as the summers and we hope that our ready access to the North Cornish coastline will encourage those wishing to visit Cornwall out of season.
There are plenty of walking opportunities for all, either close to Tregwelan along the Camel Trail or from Padstow where the ancient Saints’ Way, a route to Fowey begins and access to sections of The South West Coastal Path is possible.
Numerous water-based activities can be experienced from either Padstow or Rock.Whilst all these may be experienced without the need to start the car engine, the glorious sandy beaches of Trevone, Harlyn, Constantine and Treyarnon are within a 20 minute drive away.
What was it like to buy a hut from Blackdown?
The Blackdown team was professional, relaxed and flexible and really helpful in all aspects of the buying process. We were kept informed on progress and the changes and additions we asked for were provided in most instances within the original price. Delivery of the hut was interesting as it happened on the wettest day of the year and the hut had to be towed approximately two miles along our narrow lanes to finally be installed at home. The skill in moving over three tons of hut in these circumstances was managed with ease. Very impressive!
What is your website / info for booking?
We decided to use a holiday letting agency and Tregwelan went live with Classic Cottages of Helston (tel 01326 555555) on 26thJune 2017 . It appears on their websites www.classicglamping.co.uk and also www.classic.co.uk.
In spite of the relatively late launch, booking response has been extremely promising with virtually all of July, August and September already booked. We are now looking forward to year-round bookings!
It sounds pretty perfect and picturesque Alison and John – we wish you all success!