I’m sitting on the patio with a warm coffee, gazing out across the valley where the morning sunshine is casting long lavender shadows across the hills. The wrens are singing their hearts out, and overhead a buzzard wheels on the thermals, keening to his mate. Around my feet, chickens peck and scrape in the grass, and I know I will have fresh eggs for breakfast. I breathe in the fresh air, and still can’t quite believe that we are lucky enough to call this beautiful valley our home.
We purchased Venn Farm in November of last year, a lifelong dream come true; to live in clean air and green meadows, a little tract of ancient woodland fringing a babbling brook. Space for our horses, and four beautiful holiday cottages converted from a traditional stone barn, enabling us to share this slice of paradise with others.
We live here with my mum Pippa and her dog Alfie, a Battersea dogs home rescue, our two rescued cats, our horses Lily and Cassie, the two beautiful Alpacas Rum & Raisin who came with the property, and the flock of chickens who more than earn their keep in the production of fresh eggs. We are starting to settle in to this new way of life, a world away from the suburbs and the crazy daily London commute that we have left behind. The local neighbours have truly made us feel welcome and there is a sense of community spirit here which is hard to find elsewhere.
But there’s work to do, and this cup of coffee I am treating myself to is almost gone. We have walls to paint, new climbing frames to assemble, a brand new coffee room to install in the Games barn, and a hot tub to fit. We are refurbishing the cottages, with new bathrooms and furniture, updated kitchens, and new 230 thread-count Egyptian cotton linen throughout. The heating is being upgraded, windows replaced and new flooring put down throughout. It’s much more than just a lick of paint. And so, feasting my eyes on that view as I take my last sip of coffee, I pick up my paint brush, and get back to work, knowing that everything I do now will make the experience for my guests even more special when we re-open in May.
We hope to see you here some time,
Zoe & Steve