A DIVERSIFICATION project into luxury glamping pods has proved a successful move for a Cumbrian family farm.
Since welcoming its first guests just over 18 months ago, Wellington Jerseys has been a hit with visitors with multiple repeat bookings and excellent reviews.
All six glamping pods have their own hydrotherapy hot tubs and panoramic views of the Western Lake District fells.
Located near Cockermouth on the edge of the Lake District National Park and just 20 minutes from the tourist hub of Keswick, the business is run by the Stamper family, who also operate a well-established cafe and tearoom at Wellington Farm.
Debbie Stamper, who manages the glamping pods, said they were expecting a busy summer, as the staycation boom continues throughout 2022.
She said: “We’re delighted with how the pods have been received by visitors. People love the rural location and the fact that they come with all the home comforts such as a double bed, an ensuite bathroom, a living area with kitchenette, and an outside area with a barbecue and outdoor furniture.
“We wanted to make the most of the location by offering a first-class experience to visitors and, by investing in quality accommodation and extra details such as the hot tubs and double patio doors to make the most of the view, I think we have achieved that.
“We felt the potential was there to develop the business, so opening the glamping pods was a natural step for us and, because it’s a family business, we wanted to build something for the future.”
The Stamper family is a long-established client of Carlisle-based H&H Insurance Brokers, which operates across the North of England, the Scottish Borders and Wales, and worked with the team to plan and deliver the diversification project.
Luke Conn-Goodman, who is the Stampers’ Account Executive at H&H Insurance Brokers, said: “Wellington Jerseys is a brilliant example of how farming enterprises can adapt and change to create opportunities through diversification.
“Recent figures from the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs found that 35 per cent of the total income for farmers in North West England was from diversified business activities.
“We work with businesses across the rural and agricultural sector providing support for clients looking to diversify, and also for those operating within the tourism and hospitality sector such as self-catering holiday lets, campsites, hotels and tourism experiences.
“Every business is unique which is why we work closely with our clients to ensure they are covered by an insurance policy tailored to meet their individual requirements.”
The glamping pods at Wellington Farm, which launched in September 2020, have proved extremely popular with visitors looking to escape to the countryside, operating at an average of 80 per cent occupancy.
A flexible booking system allows people more choice on the duration of their stay, with the team on-site for changeovers and any guest requirements during their stay.
Established in 2005, Wellington Jerseys began as a post-foot and mouth diversification project when the family restocked their dairy herd with Jersey cows and used the milk to make ice cream for the newly opened cafe and tearoom at Wellington Farm.
The dairy herd was sold about 10 years ago to focus on the Wellington Jerseys business, with quality Jersey milk now bought in for the ice cream, which is made to the same recipe and only sold at the cafe.
The fully equipped pods include kitchenettes with stainless steel worktops, a double electric hob, fridge/freezer and microwave; living areas with a sofa and 32-inch Smart TV; a fully made up double bed with bedside USB chargers; and an ensuite bathroom with thermostatic shower, heated towel rail and fluffy towels provided.
Wellington Jerseys has remained close to its farming roots and includes a variety of animals which visitors can see on the site including alpacas, llamas, a horse, donkeys, a Highland Cow, a Jersey cow and peacocks.