West Devon accommodation, B&B on organic farm

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Responsible tourism: West Devon accommodation, B&B on organic farm

Environment

We have an organic dairy farm which is certified by the Soil Association. We cultivate our walled vegetable garden without the use of pesticides and fertilisers, and give surpluses to guests. We recycle plastic, paper, tin, cardboard and glass which is collected and the general farm waste is taken to a recycling centre. We collect rainwater from the farm building and recycle it for farm use. We have two ponds on the farm which attract all sorts of wildlife. We have a farm trail which is guided by nine granite rollers which takes you along a small stream and a bluebell wood (about ¾ mile long, an information sheet is provided). We also have 400m stretch of fishing on the River Torridge, which is an idyllic spot. You might even spot otters or kingfishers. The BBC’s Springwatch series was filmed half a mile upstream. We have a laundry scheme where we change towels and sheets after 4 – 7 days or when guests request them. We use green/ biodegradable/ eco products such as ecover in the property.

We use local meats from our local butcher who provides the bacon and sausage. Our local inn provides local meats, vegetables and fish. We use local services such as builders, electricians and plumbers for the maintenance and employ one person full time to help with milking the cows. We are involved in a local charity ‘Farms for City Children’ which gives inner city children an opportunity to experience country life on a farm. They learn how to care for the animals, watch the cows being milked, help feed the baby calves, clean out sheds etc. These children stay at Nethercott house nearby which was started up by Michael Morpurgo (a popular children’s author) and his wife 30 years ago.

We support the local community by encouraging guests to visit local attractions, such as RHS Rosemoor Gardens, Dartington Crystal Visitor Centre, etc (leaflets displayed on front hall table). We recommend guests to eat in our local villages where we have a great selection of eating houses and restaurants. Guests can buy produce from our local market town of Hatherleigh, where there is a pannier market and poultry market held every Tuesday. There is also a local pottery and an antique shop and an antique or general furniture auction every Tuesday.

Community

My husband Graham, and his brother David has recently celebrated 40 years of being involved in the 'Farms for City Children Charity'founded in Devon by childrens writer Michael Morpurgo and his wife Clare.The charity offers urban children the opportunity of a unique experience to live and work together on a real farm in the heart of the countryside.Children learn about the importance of conservation, where their food comes from, sustainability and good citizenship.The farm experience is, for many, a world away from their daily lives.It is the first time they have seen a sky full of stars, a natural horizon, fields of grazing animals.In these peaceful conditions, the children flourish.Self-esteem and confidence visibly grow as they rise to the challenges around them, learn to take responsibility for what they are doing.Besides Nethercott House in Iddesleigh there are now two more charities in other parts of the country, providing the most memorable week of their young lives to 3,000 children every year.

Reviews of West Devon accommodation, B&B on organic farm

You can trust Responsible Travel reviews because, unlike many other schemes, reviews can ONLY be written by people who we have verified have been on the holidays.

I am reborn! Simply the best holiday I have ever been on
Some great stories to tell the grandchildren. Would recommend to a friend
Very enjoyable
It was OK
A bit disappointing really

Reviewed on 25 May 2013 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?


We are a retired couple from Thailand, spent two days and two nights for holiday cum study with Graham and Rosemary Ward's farm.
The accommodation was so clean and tidy of both bedroom and toilet. We were served with delicious breakfast cooked from organic farm produce. Graham spent almost two hours took us around their farm explained how an organic farm is practiced.
The farm also has a small museum of the local history which is useful to learn. WIFI was also provided which enable us to get in touch with people while living in the quite and peaceful countryside. We would recommend to the people who want to spend holiday time in the natural nice and peaceful environment with good hospitality.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?


Staying in this farm you may feel stay at home. The farm owner are simple and friendly.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


I feel good to see this is one of an organic farms in the UK which conserve natural environment and produce safe food to people.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


I would rate our stay, for four stars.

Reviewed on 23 Sep 2013 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?


Visiting the Eden Project, Rosemoor Gdns, other NT/RHS properties in the area (weather was exceedingly poor - lots of rain and mist, strong winds, affected walking any major distance.)

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?


Drive carefully! The accommodation is fairly isolated - many 1-car width roads with super-high hedges. Bring warm indoor clothing + slippers - rooms (incl. communal sitting-room) quite chilly until mianly portable electric heaters switched on.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


Yes - all our rooms' light fixtures were fitted with long-life bulbs, towels only changed x1 in the week (at our instigation), sheets lasted the week. Proprietess, R Ward, presumably bought many of the b'fast ingredients from local shops (didn't ask), but supplied her own home-grown apples, raspberries, plums; delicious mushrooms came from the fields surrounding this organic dairy farm. Mrs Ward also makes her own strawberry/damson/raspberry jams. Food is cooked on an AGA, which also heats the household water. We ate our main daily meal at recommended local pubs. Paper/plastic bottles, etc are recycled. Accommodation is non-smoking.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


We were very appreciative of the care and helpfulness demonstrated by our proprietess. Sweet lady. There was no stuffiness or formality, all very relaxed from our point of view. The accommodation was spacious and comfortable. Clean. Quiet. Breakfast substantial and tasty. We were sent home with some garden produce. After the total write-off that was our accommodation in France - thanks to Responsible Travel - earlier this year, we were sceptical this farm accommodation would live up to its billing, but then were most pleasantly surprised and delighted (and relieved) when it did.

This was our second visit to Devon in a year - unfortunately, the weather was not kind on either occasion, which did affect enjoyment somewhat, as often views, and therefore the beauty of much of the county, could not be seen and appreciated for being obscured by rain and mist. But this being the UK, we made the best of it.

Reviewed on 07 Oct 2008 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?


Rose made us very welcome and nothing was too much trouble. The accommodation was first class and very comfortable. There was lots to do and see locally whatever the weather!

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?


We are looking forward to going back with our bikes and cycling the Tarka trail. The countryside is beautiful and well worth a visit.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?


The wonderful breakfasts that Rose cooked were made up of local produce and tasted delicious. Rose is a very good jam maker too!

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


4 star! Excellent.

Reviewed on 12 Dec 2007 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?


Warm welcome. Wonderful cream tea on arrival. Very child friendly - Rose went out of her way to find books and puzzles for the children to play with. Fantastic breakfasts. Great food in nearby pub in village. Good position for exploring surrounding countryside. Excellent cycling nearby.

2. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?
Yes.

3. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?
Excellent.

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