There’s always something to be admired and enjoyed in nature, whatever the season, but looking around me as I write, I have to say I think the woods here look their very, very best on a beautiful sunny spring day.
The memory is a strange thing: I can’t quite believe that only last month the weather here included proper below-zero temperatures and snow as well.
We are built to be robust though – both the team here (!) and The Woodsman’s Treehouse. We stayed fully open and operational throughout the cold snap without any problems. And when it was a little tricky to move all a guest’s things in and out, our Land Rovers were easily up to the task.
Since the cold spell, we have been busy getting everything ship shape for the busy summer season. All of the workshops now have brand new parachute ceilings and all of the paths have been completely refinished. The bluebells are out, the trees are all now in leaf and ducklings have appeared in the fishing pond.
We have also replaced all of the signs around the woods, including a few new ones to set the scene on arrival ...
Naturally, we aim to keep everything ‘just right’ at Crafty Camping. As all the accommodation here is nicely spread out over the entire woods, restocking, cleaning and changing over everything can be quite a significant task ... And so it seems to us to be a perfectly sensible solution to invest in some electric ‘changeover chariots’!
My favourite is the new black single seater golf buggy. Buggy racing back to the store room is an added bonus.
Nick The Shroom
I am pleased to be able to introduce Nick Phillips to the team here. Nick was previously working at the Lanesborough Hotel in London, where he was the Concierge. With that experience on his CV he may well be a tad overqualified for the job here in the woods. We are delighted to have him on board.
As well as helping us out with all the day-to-day work here, Nick will also be running his own foraging and fungi courses and tours when the season starts.
In the meantime, you can follow Nick’s progress on Instagram:
Waitrose Vegan Retreat
We were recently taken over by Waitrose – in the nicest possible way!
For a week, Crafty Camping was the venue for Waitrose’s Vegan Retreat and Cookery School – and with a new group of lucky guests every night and four professional chefs in the field kitchen we had quite a time.
Over the weekend the Waitrose Cookery School provided demonstrations and lots of delicious food and wine while, during the week twin brothers Steve and Dave, aka The Happy Pear, took over, with their Vegan Retreat cooking providing some amazing meals. All that, and sunrise swims and beach handstands up the road in Lyme Regis for the brave. It all seems very quiet again now that we are back to our normal routine - they really were full of beans ...
Further details on their courses, restaurants and recipes can be found here:
The local arts event ‘Dorset Art Weeks’ gets underway at the end of next week for a fortnight. This is always a popular event and there’s a lot to enjoy.
If you are staying here while it’s on, I urge you to have a look at their website before arrival - there is so much to see and days need planning to get the most out of it all.
I would like to make a special mention of our friend Bjork, who will be exhibiting her beautiful ceramics in her studio at Higher Holditch Farm opposite the woods. And, of course, my wonderful wife Boo will be opening her studio doors in Bridport, showing her fantastic abstract landscape paintings, both large and small.
As I write, we do still have some availability during the event. Crafty Camping makes a great base for exploring the artistic talent of West Dorset.
For Those Special Gatherings
In recent months we have been experiencing ever-increasing interest in whole site bookings for special gatherings, both for next year and beyond.
To be fair to all our guests, given both this interest and how far ahead The Woodsman’s Treehouse in particular is being booked up for, we have decided to open up all of our accommodation in the online booking calendar right up to the end of 2020.
If you have a special gathering planned and would like to book our whole site, do consider booking-up sooner rather than later to guard against being disappointed.
(We ask for just 25% of the balance on booking, with the balance eight weeks prior to arrival.)
A Good Read
We were absolutely delighted to be featured with a six page spread in the fantastic new treehouse book by Jane Field-Lewis - The Anatomy of Treehouses. I would recommend it as a good read, detailing some of the most spectacular treehouses around the world.
Further details and ordering information is here:
It’s lovely to receive good press coverage and the treehouse and our woodland glamping both get some great reviews. One of my favourites this month was the piece on The Woodsman’s Treehouse in the FT’s ‘How to spend it’ magazine.
Don’t Be A Stranger
Time being as hard to come by as ever, we don't publish our newsletter as often as we might - the last one was in November! However, in the coming months and years we will keep on keeping our guests up to date, and we hope you’ll stay in touch once the much publicised new data protection laws come in to force.
We’ll contact you again soon about how you can keep on receiving newsletters from us in a separate mailing, we hope that you will opt in to make sure you find out what’s going on here in the woods and be the first to know about any offers, competitions and new offerings etc.
And that's about it for this edition. We hope to see you soon.
Guy and the team