Around 62% of UK farmers are having to diversify alongside running a traditional farm, according to government figures. As farms are trying to diversify their sources of income through various entrepreneurial activities, many are looking to agri-tourism as an alternative. This form of tourism has seen a rise in popularity in recent years. For city-dwellers, farm tourism offers an opportunity to experience rural life, even just for a few days. Some of these ventures are becoming so successful that they’ve overtaken traditional farming as the primary source of income.
How then does a farm begin investing in agri-tourism? What steps should farm owners take to become successful in this project? Below, we’ll explore key investments farm owners should consider to make their farms attractive for tourism.
We were at the beginning of this Glamping phenomenon and are the largest pod manufacturer in the UK. Our pod designs have been copied many times, but the true iconic design camping pod still remains with us.
Pod companies will come and go, but we will continue to grow year on year. We have pod agents all over the globe, we are the only company to do this, we remain sharp and adventurous and intent on all rising markets for this product, always marching forwards to gain any foot hold to secure new business for us, the future is positive and we are upbeat on current and forth coming orders.
As the glamping trend took off around 10 years ago, farmers and landowners up and down the country installed pods, washroom and camping facilities to attract this new, younger and hipper crowd of campers. But, as the team at Quality Unearthed tell our editor Victoria Galligan, it’s not as easy to attract guests now the competition has grown – unless you can provide a wow factor. Here, they advise on how to create an Insta-worthy glampsite which will get visitors return year on year.
Glampsite Q&A with Quality Unearthed's Tim Rees…
Catgill farm has been our family home for the past 60 years, originally run as a dairy farm by Grandad Ken. In 2013 Ken’s grandson Oliver returned to Catgill to the cottage where he was born and had the idea of opening a campsite. It was not easy to sell his idea to his Grandad but he agreed and the campsite opened in 2014.
“We hoped people would love it here as much as we do” said Oliver, it turns out they do and the campsite has grown enormously in popularity over the past 5 years. It’s an amazing place for families there is so much to do; Bolton Abbey is only 1Km away and Hesketh Farm Park is literally over the road.
The site is also close to the Dalesway footpath and there are numerous cycle routes including the famous Tour de France and Tour de Yorkshire routes. Each year we have added new features to the site, we started with a high quality amenity block and a field. Ken would welcome guests into his living room to check in.
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.
If sandy beaches, real ales and one of the world’s best-known golf courses close by sounds like your type of holiday, then you only have to wait until 1st June for the grand opening of Wigwam® Holidays Largo Law.
Based in the East Neuk of Fife, six en-suite glamping cabins nestle on this working farm just 11 miles from St Andrews.
Owned by Ron and Sheilann Smith, the couple have diversified their working farm to include glamping accommodation in this stunning part of Scotland bringing brand new glamping options to the region.
Co-owner Ron said: “We are delighted to be part of one of the country’s leading glamping accommodation providers, Wigwam® Holidays.
Becka Wright, Creative Manager at Appetite Me, on entering into rural diversification in a seemingly saturated market…
With more and more land owners and farmers looking into diversifying their land and business in order to secure a more financially stable future it can leave you questioning what new ways can you expand your business, especially when so many markets seem over saturated. However, there are new trends and ideas being developed all the time, below we talk about the trends we are seeing in farming diversification.
Branching into farm attractions or farm stays are the most obvious choices if you are looking to diversify into rural tourism. There’s a lot of buzz about staycations in the news and numbers of UK families choosing staycations rather than going abroad are increasing. Glamping is an area of particular growth.
The Glamping Show offers the advice and inspiration you need to set-up a sustainable revenue stream through tourism. The popular appeal and continued growth of the glamping industry gives you excellent potential to generate revenue, but it’s easy to be overwhelmed by all the choices you need to make.
Seeing the accommodation for yourself will really help you to visualise what you can create and what will work on your farm. The Glamping Show also offers a free multi-track seminar programme that covers all the advice you need to get off on the right foot.
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.