Over the stile and along the path to our characterful and rustic John's Hut, sitting in its own paddock by the millpond. The larger of our two glamping accommodations (17x6ft), it is comfortably equipped for longer stays. The small double bed, tucked away at the end of the hut, has a supportive mattress and is dressed in a pretty pink cotton ticking with an all season hypoallergenic duvet made from 100% grade A long-fibre Mulberry silk. The blue Hungarian dresser is thoughtfully stocked with all that you will need for your stay; a trug of cutlery, crockery, glasses, utensils. Wood is provided for the small Salamander stove that will keep you toasty warm ... in the mornings, boil the kettle on the top, throw open the stable door and watch the ducks on the millpond (there is also an electric kettle and toaster). Later, sit at the pine table overlooking the chestnut tree with a pot of tea, slice of homemade cake and a board game taken from the wooden box.
There is a firepit, with a tripod grill. A Rocket stove is also available to use, small pieces of wood will have to be prepared if required for a charge of £5 a bucket. Why not enjoy sizzling some sausages and enjoy a glass of wine whilst chasing stars under our exceptional night skies! There is a 'belly box' under the hut with rugs and blankets and in the green sideboard under the awning you will find cooking equipment. Through the gate, on the grass by the millpond and under the trees is a table and chairs as well as a relaxing hammock chair and in the summer a day bed. Less than two minutes from the hut and situated in the mill yard is a bright and clean washroom with a shared flushing loo and hot shower. The important stuff: Bath towels and linen are provided. For each night booked a bucket of wood for the fire pit and Salamander stove is provided, if you require a re-fill there is a £5 charge.
why not cook BREAKFAST?
We can provide guests with a selection of locally sourced breakfast goodies to cook over the fire. A loaf of homemade bread (made with our organic stoneground flour), butter, milk, juice, 4 sausages, 8 rashers of bacon, half a dozen eggs from our chickens, tomatoes and a can of baked beans are included. The cost is £20 and will feed two people. (£30 for 4 people, including 8 sausages, 12 rashers of bacon, a dozen eggs and two cans of baked beans.) John's Hut has been set up as a self-catering accommodation and you will find all that you need to prepare meals.
John's Hut guests can enjoy a 'help yourself' breakfast, as can guests who have booked both huts. It's a little different to Miller's Hut, but tasty all the same! A cool bag with breakfast supplies, including homemade bread, jams, muesli, yoghurt, fruit, milk and juice will be left on the fridge in the tack room for you so that you can prepare and enjoy at your leisure! You will find cupboard essentials in John's Hut to get you started, including tea, coffee, sugar, salt & pepper, cooking oil, pasta, porridge oats as well as marshmallows for the fire. (The hut is not connected to water, however there is a butt of water and all you need to wash up. There are also washing up facilities by the tack room. Fresh water comes out of the taps by the tack room and porch for drinking and cooking.)
the HUT'S industrial history.
John's Hut is a characterful period piece painstakingly and correctly made by Eddie Butterfield at Heritage Shepherd's Huts. With a background in restoration and blacksmithing, Eddie has custom made the hut for us based on a traditional living van and is 'worthy of standing shoulder to shoulder with some of the original makers'. Nestled close to the millpond, looking towards the island where ducks gather, discover the joys of glamping in pretty north Dorset. NB: we have thoughtfully orientated the hut as a small mill cottage is nearby. Occasionally occupied, it is not a holiday let.
Similar to shepherd's huts that could be moved around, living vans were specially designed for use with steam rollers, steam engines and ploughing engines. Living vans were wooden trailers towed behind for the crew to live in whilst working away from base. Engineers Bomford & Evershed, Ltd. noted that the vans not only saved crew trouble and expense of finding lodgings, which was better as they were apt to neglect themselves when fresh lodgings were hard to secure, but enabled small repairs to be carried out if the weather was too bad for the roller to be worked in. The vans usually had a bunk for two to five men, along with a cast iron stove and a small surface for work, food storage locker and detachable steps. A large number have been restored by engine owners to add to their engine especially if they transport them to shows such as the Great Dorset Steam Fair held locally near Blandford.