Sunday, 31 July 2011

Upcycling for geese, and ex-battery newcomers

Lots happening here this week! Bill has made a glamorous new house for the geese from an old crate and a few pallets - it's superb and they're very comfortable in their spacious new home! As they're now towering over their poor mother, it's not before time...and he's delighted with the fact that every single part of it has been liberated from the junk pile in the top barn. So for the cost of two boxes of screws, we have a whole new and extremely sturdy goose house - the ultimate in upcycling!

This new pad has freed up the nursery ark for our new arrivals. This afternoon we had a very scenic hour's drive over to Chulmleigh to collect our ex-battery hens. We'd booked 3 but in the event they persuaded us to take an extra, very raggedy looking hen, so the four of them travelled very calmly back to their new Blackdown Hills home and immediately started exploring. Given that it was only this morning they were released from their cages and this was their very first time on grass or moving about freely, it was amazing to see how quickly instinct kicked in - they were scratching and pecking within minutes.

They've got to stay apart from our resident hens until they're a bit stronger and look less ragged or they'll be bullied, so the new girls are making the sheeps' acquaintance in a new enclosure in the top field. Daisy and Willow have taken great pains to settle them in and plan to have them eating out of their hands within days...they're also trying to think of names! We're not holding our breath on this one as the only one of our existing hens to have a name that's stuck is known as...Little Red Hen.

Wednesday, 13 July 2011

Discount offer for autumn breaks in Devon!

10% discount on all term time bookings in autumn or winter on mention of this blog or our Facebook/Twitter pages!

Avoid the school holiday crowds and make the most of what's usually beautiful Autumn weather here in Devon. Luggs Barn's stylish and spacious self catering accommodation features full central heating as well as a wood burning stove and balcony from which to soak up the views. A cosy retreat and something to look forward to once the nights draw in - and at a great price when you book outside peak times!

Luggs Barn is the perfect base for small groups of like-minded friends or family members to enjoy peace and seclusion in glorious Devon countryside. Walkers, cyclists, artists, photographers...lose yourself in the scenery and wildlife of the Blackdown Hills AONB and enjoy a well earned break far from the madding crowds!

Tuesday, 12 July 2011

Can social networking boost holiday bookings? Plus kitchen news

Having attended Cosmic's Introduction to Social Networking course arranged by the Blackdown Hills Business Association today, I'm inspired to make even better use of our Facebook and Twitter accounts. Along with this blog, they're an integral part of our efforts to ensure that Luggs Barn is reaching the widest possible audience.

One of the most interesting points covered was the importance of video clips in marketing - as musicians, we've looked up bands or pieces of music on YouTube - check out Bill's session with The Atlantics on there! But we hadn't realised the importance of video tours of our accommodation, setting and surroundings. Keep an eye on this blog, plus our Facebook and Twitter pages, as adding videos to our profiles is probably the most important development we'll be making this year.

Other news - we've finally moved into the new kitchen extension! We're no longer gazing enviously at Luggs Barn's beautiful kitchen as the main farmhouse has one of its own. There's still some finshing off to be done - a sink is top of the list! - but once it's looking its best, I'll post some photos. Reclaiming the living rooms from temporary kitchen and piles of boxes has been another bonus, especially being able to use the inglenook fireplaces again. We're also delighted to have central heating, and heated towel rails are the best prize of all! Although Willow (aged nearly 3) woke up on the first morning after plumber Darren Kirk of DK Plumbing had left, hit the radiator in her room and declared: 'I not like this. It make me too hot.' The adults in the house, however, have had the heating on for the past week in glorious sunshine as a matter of principle after months of cold and damp after the extensive lime plastering!

Now that the main farmhouse is almost finished, we'll be celebrating by publishing exclusive discount offers for Luggs Barn on all our social networking profiles over the next few weeks. If you're considering a Devon holiday and have an eye for a bargain, keep in touch!

Friday, 8 July 2011

Summer plans

Lots going on in the Blackdown Hills this summer! The Honiton Show this year is on 4th August; this hugely popular country show is a wonderful day out -

The week of July 29-August 5 is Sidmouth Folk Week, with lots going on to interest musicians, families and visitors alike. Have a look at

Check out if you're in the area on 12-13 August.

Further ahead, from 24 September - 2 October the Appledore Book Festival in North Devon will be a magnet for literary enthusiasts of all ages, with a family day, poetry trail and authors speaking about their work.

Check back for other ideas throughout the summer months!

Back here at Luggs, the goslings are growing well and are now enjoying the freedom of the garden with their Mum. They've been getting braver by the day, roaming further and further afield and were spotted on the front lawn of the farmhouse this morning! The buzzards appear to be leaving them alone so hopefully they're large enough now not to be worth a challenge...

Monday, 4 July 2011

Top class publicity!

We were delighted to hear recently that Luggs Barn is set to be featured in Country Homes & Interiors Magazine's September issue. Only a small mention and photo as they were short on space but they've kindly agreed to try to make room for a larger feature in future!

We also have Period Ideas and Devon Life magazines interested, so keep an eye out for us! Readers of these publications and any others we manage to appear in can claim a 10% discount on all bookings on production of the relevant page, so start thinking about autumn/winter breaks and book early to make sure your preferred week's available. The sunshine at the moment is beautiful but once September arrives we'll all need something to look forward to!