Leisure and Tourism
Farm Diversity magazine editor Victoria Galligan caught up with Anji Morrall, the director of The Tipi Hire Company and The Bell Tent Shop. Here, she advises those setting up glampsites on choosing the perfect tents…
How did you get into making tipi tents?
We started hiring North American tipis 12 years ago. I bought one tipi to live in on a plot of land we were going to buy in Spain. The sale fell through – and I was left with a tipi. I then made a website and it took off overnight.
Five years down the line, I asked our customers what they wanted and bell tents were becoming popular. We started hiring our bell tents for extra accommodation at weddings, festivals, corporate events etc. and we now have over 500 that we hire our throughout the summer months across the UK and beyond.
Huts and Stuff make Shepherds Huts to suit many uses: Their Field and Farm Shepherd's Huts make great entry Glamping solutions ideal for ramblers, walkers and cyclists accommodation. While the “Severn”, their 16ft River Range hut, can be customised to suit luxury long weekend lets ideal for wedding venues and honeymoon getaways.
Dave and John are the father and son team behind Huts and Stuff. They have over 12 years experience meeting the uniquely different needs of each of their customers. With little more than a vague idea, or a sketch on a back of an envelope, they will design a layout that suits your needs and will let you know if they think your ideas need a little more tweaking. They want the project to work for you! And Give a return on your investment.
A world full of Luxury safari tents, furnished lodges and the fastest service. That is what you will get from Outstanding. The leading safari tent supplier can take care of everything. From the moment you ask them for advice to the moment the installation is complete. They lift camping to a higher level and will make sure your guests get a well-deserved vacation.
In a period of just four years Outstanding has taken up a leading position in the relatively new world of glamping. They’re designing and producing all safari tents, glamping lodges and furniture themselves. And the results have been exceptional. Their safari tents and lodges can already be found in nearly 45 countries.
With a beach nearby, some of Scotland’s Great Trails within easy reach and group bookings welcome, Wigwam® Holidays Cove Farm is perfect for a beautiful glamping break at Cockburnspath, situated in East Lothian, Scotland.
Just a short drive from the A1 and close to the railway’s East Coast mainline at Dunbar, this brand new site boasts six en-suite luxury Running Water Deluxe Wigwam® Cabins which include a kitchenette, dining facilities and comfy mattresses for up to a family of four. Each cabin is heated and insulated offering superb holiday accommodation for glamping guests.
The site is a family affair, run by the Hoods and the Lows and is just half an hour from historic Edinburgh. The site is also secluded enough for a memorable glamping break away from the hustle and bustle for families and couples.
Co-owner of the site, Rosie Low, said: “We are delighted to be offering these fabulous luxury glamping cabins to guests who want to enjoy our fabulous location.
Andy Sutton, founder of Sutton Hospitality Consultants lives and breathes hospitality and leisure – it has been his passion for 25 years. His proven track record for achieving great results spanning the holiday park, leisure and theme park industry commands him enviable respect amongst his industry peers and competitors.
Andy’s projects are built from the ground up; firm foundations and careful planning, land development with specialisms in Greenfield Site and Unique Accommodation. Taking a piece of land, planning, developing, building, sales, marketing and then selling an established park with an increase of 130% - all in only 3 years is one of Andy’s proudest achievements.
When it comes to alternative and unique accommodation - the quirkier the better! Sutton Hospitality Consultants have a great eye for recognising the potential in unusual and obscure projects. They share with you knowledge and expertise to help you to realise your unconventional and alternative accommodation potential. They’ve even converted metal freight containers into castles!
Tithe Barn started building beautiful, bespoke shepherd’s huts in 2011 and this was the main focus of our business for several years. However, we diversified into the selling of parts having invested in patterns for our own British cast iron wheels. Building a shepherd’s hut is not rocket science and we very quickly realised two markets were emerging – customers who wanted a hut built for them and those who wanted the satisfaction of building their own. Working closely with a few carefully selected suppliers, we gradually developed our range of products, all specifically designed for shepherd’s huts, to create the unique “one stop shop” that we offer today!
Four Oaks Farm was first established in 1967 as an intensive pig farm on 10 acres of land in Mid Sussex that had previously formed part of an older adjacent farm. First to be built were extensive pig sheds and 2 Dutch Barns followed a year so later by the first farmhouse in the form a small bungalow.
With only mixed success as a pig farm, Four Oaks changed ownership on a number of occasions in the following years and in the early 1980s was taken on by a farming family, who moved more towards a mixed farming business. A smallholding of 10 acres would in days gone by have supported a family but as intensive large scale farming became popular, the business became increasingly unviable. What they did establish though was the large lakes which today have become the hallmark of the beautiful location we enjoy today. Towards the end of their tenure, a few of the outbuildings were let out unofficially to local businesses as workshops to provide a useful additional income but the authorities became aware of this and an Enforcement Notice of Closure was served upon those few workshops. It was at that point that they decided to move on.
A family business passionate about design, craftsmanship and quality.
Cedar Tree Pods is a family-run business based near Wrexham in North Wales. We make beautiful pods, shepherds huts, yurts and garden rooms. Each one of our pod designs can be tailored to your exact requirements, fitting perfectly with the needs of your business, family or lifestyle. From initial design to full realisation our team will work closely with you to create the unique space you’ve always wanted.
With farm diversification high on peoples agenda and Brexit looming large, now is the perfect time to think about what glamping could do for your business. Whether it is a side-line in an unused field or a complete change, there is great potential in the glamping market and with more and more people taking “staycations” now is a perfect time to get involved.
Glampsan, a division of Plastic Solutions (Aldridge) Limited is a leading supplier of a comprehensive range of products, from plastic waste and water tanks for above and below ground applications; sewage lifting stations; pumps, water boosting tanks and supporting products used in multiple industries: in particular, camping and caravanning, glamping, agriculture and leisure.
Founded in 2010 and manufacturing in the UK, Glampsan and Plastic Solutions have refined their expertise from the initial manufacture and sale of a simple 500-gallon tank to capture waste from toilets, to now developing niche products and solutions for capturing, controlling and pumping waste and water for glampers, caravanners and campers, both on and off-grid.
With their fourth anniversary on the horizon, Wigwam® Holidays Crowtree is one of the success stories for Wigwam® Holidays, the nationwide glamping accommodation provider.
The site, based near Spalding, South Lincolnshire, opened with six Running Water Deluxe Wigwam® Cabins in July 2015.
Owned and run by Patrick and Anne Mews, the site is home to a working farm including cattle and faithful farm dog, Bella.
Their beautiful site is close to the River Welland and is THE place to switch off, relax and lose oneself in this rural location.
Co-owner Patrick said: “It is hard to believe it’s nearly four years since we opened! Time has flown by.
“Like many in the farming sector, making money just from the farm has become a real challenge in recent years.
It’s not often you hear the words ‘luxury’ and ‘piggery’ in the same sentence – but Joe Evans, co-owner and manager of the Whitbourne Estate in rural Herefordshire, is taking his farm in a new direction this year by transforming an old piggery into a luxurious new venue for corporate events, special occasions and weddings.
Joe and wife Keeley, the duo behind the award-winning Green Cow Kitchens restaurant on their 1,500 acre estate, are in the midst of building Crumplebury; a luxury venue designed for all manner of events, set to shake up the region’s offering of places to host special occasions.
Cornwall … organic livestock … glamping … this sounds like a magical list of ingredients making up a tasty cocktail for a successful diversification project.
And for Wigwam® Holidays Penbugle, these formed the basic three factors for their farm’s diversification over the last eight years.
Wigwam® Holidays Penbugle Organic Farm, which is close to the market town of Liskeard and the fishing communities of Looe and Polperro in South East Cornwall, have taken the glamping plunge on their organic farm, part of the Duchy of Cornwall Duloe Estate.
The glorious Cornish countryside, which has been captured in BBC TV’s Poldark adaptations, is just one factor that encouraged John and Lizzie Ridout to diversify their farm to include bell tents, a campsite and spacious Big Chief Wigwam® Cabins, becoming part of the growing Wigwam® Holidays Franchise.
With the lofty Moffat Hills as a backdrop, John and Laura Hume knew they had to share their glorious location with visitors to the area … and not just with the Golden Eagles and Ospreys that fly above this beautiful location!
The site opened in April 2017 and includes six Running Water Deluxe Wigwam® Cabins made just up the road in Dumfries and Galloway, Scotland.
The construction of their cabins also coincided with the felling and distribution of their own timber at their location, which is just moments from the Grey Mare’s Tail Nature Reserve.
Close to the South Upland Way and in the middle of the spectacular scenery, this working farm diversified into glamping and also painstakingly transformed the natural landscape into a haven for wildlife.
Now in its eleventh year of business, Humble Bee Farm is a working arable and stock farm in the Yorkshire Wolds.
Nothing unusual here, perhaps, except the farm decided to diversify just over a decade ago and now successfully combines the agricultural side of the business with award-winning glamping.
Co-owned by Julia and John Warters, Wigwam® Holiday Humble Bee Farm started small: a petite campsite, two original Big Chief Wigwam® Cabins and a portable toilet.
Today, with a clutch of awards under their belts, the couple have continued their diversification to include twenty Wigwam® Cabins (including four en-suite Running Water Deluxe models, each with its own private outdoor hot tub), four Nomadic Yurts, three luxury holiday cottages, a small campsite, two shower and toilet blocks, an onsite reception/shop, children’s play area, a football field and an interactive Nature Trail.
A North Yorkshire couple are enjoying the fruits of their labour after turning their unused farm buildings into holiday cottages.
As they approached retirement, farmer William Heslop, 66, and his wife, Ann Lovegreen, 57, a former project manager for Darlington Borough Council, wanted to breathe new life into their arable and beef cattle farm in Gilling West, near Richmond.
Spotting potential in three of their traditional stone-built outhouses, the couple decided to sell some of their arable land and convert the buildings into holiday homes, creating a rural retreat for guests in this stunning part of the country.
Keen to maintain their passion for farming and livestock, the couple retained a small farm and some animals, including a small herd of belted Galloway cattle, rare breed Tamworth pigs and several sheep.