A fabulous hand-made shepherds hut delightfully set in the grounds of a traditional Yorkshire farm within easy reach of the wondrous Yorkshire Dales, North York Moors and The Vale of Mowbry. Walkers, cyclists and nature enthusiasts are spoilt for choice in this glorious part of unspoilt English countryside. Furthermore, the popular market town of Thirsk is only 3 miles away and offers a variety of quaint shops and delicious restaurants to explore.
The attentive owners have considered every element of this indulgent and comfortable glamping abode. The luxurious hut is beautifully appointed with locally sourced materials from the gorgeous oak floors and worktops, bespoke iron ornaments, to the wool insulation from local sheep. It is equipped with ultra-soft beds, a wonderful en-suite bathroom including hot shower, plus free WiFi and television. A full range of cooking facilities, outside barbecue, and private patio are all in stock for a full-service safe-catering getaway.
The peaceful country location is filled with a huge variety of birds and local wildlife, as well as a whole host of other lovely farm animals. From buzzards and barn owls to horses and hares, this splendid site is an animal lovers delight, while visitors can also meet the famous residents Juno and Jupiter - the Suffolk crossed sheep - TV stars of 'The Yorkshire Vet'. The farm also contains a beautiful wildflower garden - best seen in the summer months - and even a magnificent 2-acre fish lake. This charming glamping retreat creates a tranquil scene for a relaxing break or romantic escape.
For a larger group, this property can also be rented with it's friendly neighbour Flopsy.
Interiors and Facilities
The Shepherds Hut is locally crafted and traditionally styled with a full range of features for a self-catering holiday. The hut is equipped with 1 double bed, and 1 single bunk bed (which has a 12-stone limit) with all bedding included. The property has an en-suite bathroom including hot shower, flushing toilet and wash basin with towels provided.
The hut is insulated with local sheep's wool and heated with a woodburning stove, including one complimentary bucket of logs. A drop-down table and comfy seating provide somewhere to sit and dine inside. The property is equipped with a kitchenette including fridge, microwave and integral grill with all cooking utensils provided. Storage space is available under the bed. The property also benefits from free WiFi, a television and bike storage.
A barbecue and outdoor patio with seating provide a place to cook or eat an outdoor meal or simply somewhere to sit and enjoy the tranquil surroundings with a good book or glass of wine.
One well behaved dog is allowed (£20 surcharge).
A complimentary Yorkshire welcome pack is provided, while free-range eggs can be bought on site (when available).
An on-site wash house with washing machine and tumble dryer is also available to guests.
The property is non-smoking.
Location and Destination
This glorious glamping site is set in the Vale of York near the market town of Thirsk - made famous by the James Herriot stories. This popular tourist destination is perfectly positioned to explore several areas of outstanding natural beauty including the National Parks of the Yorkshire Dales and the North York Moors. To the north, The Vale of Mowbray is distinguishable from the Vale of York by its meandering rivers and rolling landscape.
On-site you will find a wildflower garden, but please bear in mind it takes time for this to become established and at certain times of the year, it may look scruffy and unkempt.
You will also find a well-established two-acre coarse fishing lake that is situated next to the shepherd's huts. It is stocked with mirror, common and grass carp; roach; golden and green tench; barbell and chub. However, beware; the fish are fighters so don't let your guard down and ensure to bring strong tackle! The lake also provides a serene place to relax and enjoy the warm, dry days watching the world go by.
Meet The Retired Residents
Amongst the collection of retired animals are former competition horses, a small flock of sheep that were once destined for the meal table, plus former factory hens and turkeys who strut and cluck around in busy contemplation.
Guests can meet Juno & Jupiter - the two Suffolk crossed sheep that starred in 'The Yorkshire Vet' TV series. Have your photo taken with Juno; she'll do anything for a polo! Be warned, they're rather spoilt!
Due to the working nature of the farm, meetings with the sheep need to be supervised and by appointment. This can be arranged during your stay.
Pack your binoculars and cameras and head to the open spaces of the disused airbase on the farm border. Yellow, Grey and Pied Wagtails, Oystercatchers, Whitethroats and Reed Buntings can often be seen flitting about. Buzzards regularly fly overhead, while Kestrels 'on fire hang still' - to quote Dylan Thomas - scour the fields for unsuspecting prey. A rare Grasshopper warbler has also been glimpsed singing in the trees at dusk in the glamping field.
Also in the area are a number nearby bird reserves:
There is also a bird feeding station on site. Guests are encouraged to fill the feeders and attempt to identify the different birds that visit the station. In addition, there are nest boxes, bat boxes and a barn owl box on the farm.
Having been passed from generation to generation the farm is currently in the custodial care of Alan and Tricia Phillips. The farm initially produced bricks, giving the farm its name today.
Featured in the popular TV series 'The Yorkshire Vet', the farm produces beef cattle, hay and corn - continuing the owners 100-year-old family tradition.
The 2-acre fishing lake was where the clay for these bricks was excavated. This lake was originally 4 acres in size but was partially filled in just after the Second World War by the local council, who used it as a dump.
Old bottles and other memorabilia are often still excavated when the land is tilled. Alan himself raised the ancient kilns to the ground some 30 years ago, when he inherited the farm, to construct the cattle buildings.
Much of the hard-core for the foundations, paths and tracks came from the runways off the old airfield directly behind the farm. This was used by the Canadian bomber Squadrons: 432 (briefly), 433 and 424 in the war - flying Wellington, Halifax and Lancaster bombers from 1943 -1945.
The farm has continued to grow from the original footprint of 12 acres and a collection of old ramshackle buildings owned by Alan's great-grandfather - John Schofield, to 65 acres (on site) and well-constructed buildings as it is now.
The house also has been extended and built up over the generations, from the original 1-up-1-down workers' cottage that was on site prior to John Schofield's ownership, to the farmhouse it is today.
The farm now consists of arable land, suckler beef cattle, a collection of mostly dilapidated and vintage tractors and Tricia's menagerie.
Head off into the open countryside on your bike and enjoy the wind in your face as you cycle on the many National Cycling Routes that are within easy reach.
Whether you enjoy a leisurely tootle or are in training for the next Tour de Yorkshire, there are rides for every ability, not least the crippling Sutton Bank that pales even the toughest rider. The view you are rewarded with once you reach the top of Sutton Bank is remarkable, there is even a sign stating 'Finest view in England' to prove its worth!
Enjoy a leisurely walk on the permanent pasture strips that are set around the edges of the fields whilst keeping eyes peeled for the array of birds, butterflies and wildlife that live here.
If you'd prefer a slightly longer walk, choose between either a 3.5-mile walk around the 1943 disused Canadian airbase where you can enjoy researching the history of the derelict control tower or parachute building. Listen to the skylarks sing above the fields and watch the lapwings dance and perhaps even catch sight of a roe deer grazing peacefully, undisturbed by the distance sounds of tractors.
Or choose to go further along the banks of the river Swale and watch the sand martins fly over the river and the Herons stand like statues along the banks. Maybe even catch a glimpse of the otters that play in the swift-flowing currents of the turbulent dark waters.
Places To Eat
Less than half a mile walk across the fields, down the set-aside strips, will take you to the friendly hub of Busby Stoop garage that stocks all your essentials in food, toiletries and drink - including a number of alcoholic beverages for those who wish to relax with a bottle of wine and watch the sunset. Opposite is the award-winning Jaipur Spice Indian restaurant that prepares both Indian and English food - though best to book early as their success aids their popularity.
If you wish to travel a little further (about 1 mile), you will reach the pretty village of Sandhutton with its very popular pub The King's Arms, that unusually, cook whatever you wish once you've chosen your desired meat or fish.
In Thirsk itself (three miles away) there are many different pubs, cafes and restaurants that cater for a wide range of tastes. Our favourites are 'The White Horse Café' that sells the best fish and chips this side of Whitby, and 'White Rose Books and Café' that sell smashing homemade cakes.
There is always the option to enjoy a barbecue outside your own shepherd's hut, on your purposefully built patio. Sit and watch the stars, whilst relaxing and sharing a meal together and listen to the owls call to each other as dusk falls. Or let the sunlight the endless skies and dance on the distant Hambleton Hills that stretch from Sutton Bank at one end, to as far as the eye can see.
Things To Do
You are within close access to local market towns such as Thirsk or Northallerton or you can venture further to the busy locations of Ripon, Harrogate and York.
There are a range of activities and venues within the area that you can visit, examples of these are the World of James Herriot, The Ritz cinema and The Rural Arts Centre in Thirsk. Ripon, Northallerton and York offer further visitor attractions.
There are further attractions within the area, these include; Fountains Abbey & Studley Royal, Mount Grace Priory, Sion Hall Bird Falconry UK, Carlton Lodge, Thorpe Perrow Arboretum, Skipton-on-Swale Riding Centre, Camp Hill Ariel Extreme, Yorkshire Outdoors, Yorkshire Gliding Club, White Horse of Kilburn& Sutton Bank, Newby Hall & Gardens, Thirsk & Northallerton Golf Course, Richmond Castle
To view more pictures of Mopsy click the button below.