6 June 2013 marks a special date for us. It’s the day that we packed up all our worldly goods. The day we headed over to Appleton Le Moors and moved into Town End Farm.
After 20 years living in Harrogate, and 30+ years working in the corporate world, it was the start of our big adventure.
The first 2 years were taken up with planning and then the renovations of the barns. We knew that the whole place had great “bones” and just needed some imagination, TLC and cash. We had the odd sleepless night, but remarkably few. We were just excited to be setting up our own business and believed it would work.
We had many friends and family visit us in those first few months. Everyone was so supportive and positive. We did wonder what people really thought as they drove home from our ruin. We suspect many thought we were mad; looking back at our photos from then, we’d probably agree with them. We’d renovated two houses before but nothing on this scale.
We were very lucky to find Mike and Stan as our building team to work alongside Ian. Jackie could have hugged Stan when he told her that “he’d seen worse” on inspecting the West Barn. And so the exciting journey began to renovate the barns. Check out our other blogs for exciting tales of biomass boilers and renovations.
Fast forward to 2015 and we opened the Long Barn. The West Barn had been completed externally so it was safe but was not ready to open for guests. This was completed in 2017.
Since then, we’ve been genuinely blown away with the feedback from our wonderful guests who’ve stayed (many returning year after year) We’ve hosted every birthday from 9 to 90, wedding anniversaries, reunions and 11 yoga retreats. Many hundreds of people have stayed at the Long Barn.
Covid was a scary time when we were essentially closed for 2 years. We are glad that we didn’t know how long it was going to be at the start. We put the time to good use painting and updating but were very relieved when guests could once again stay with us. We also appreciated the many guests who moved bookings to when they were able to return, leaving us to hold onto their deposit. We won’t ever forget that trust in us.
Given recent years, celebrating and making memories with those closest to us is more important than ever. We love welcoming guests on arrival, and the sounds of laughter and excitement as groups meet up.
As we move into our 11th year, we’d like to say a huge thank you to everyone who has supported us so far.
And we hope to see many of you back at the Long Barn in the future.
Ian and Jackie xx