Five of the most unusual places to stay

Five of the most unusual places to stay

As bidding opens on an overnight stay in Downton Abbey, we identify five of the coolest places to bed down

By Evie Prosser

Downton Abbey fans have been sent into a spin by news that the owners of Highclere Castle, which features as the fictional stately home, are offering an overnight stay through Airbnb.

    The Downton Abbey experience will give successful bidders a taste of aristocratic living.  

The Downton Abbey experience will give successful bidders a taste of aristocratic living. As well as sleeping in one of Highclere’s beautiful suites, guests will enjoy a sumptuous dinner, a tour of the grounds and a breakfast served in the very place where Lord Crawley eats his kippers.

It sounds like a memorable night’s accommodation for anyone with a love of the show. But it is by no means the only unusual place for an overnighter. Here are five more that may just catch your imagination.

1) A shepherd’s hut

One of the most popular trends to emerge among B&B owners over recent years is to offer accommodation in a shepherd’s hut. A brief internet search offers locations in Wiltshire, The Brecon Beacons and Somerset, and there are many more available through online booking platforms.

Staying in a shepherd’s hut is fantastic fun. Most places bring breakfast to your door, and you’ll probably be surrounded by beautiful bucolic scenery that inspires and relaxes in equal measure.

Although rustic from the outside, B&B shepherd’s huts are well appointed internally, with comfortable beds, working loos and showers and modest kitchens. So you have all the comfort of a conventional bed and breakfast, but you’re right in the heart of the countryside. Perfect.

2) A tree house

What could be more exciting than a night in a leafy bough, recapturing youthful memories of hiding in a tree house while the adults attended to grown-up things below?

There are loads of options for tree house adventures. As a prime example, the tree house at Harptree Court in Somerset featured in the Channel 4 series George Clarke’s Amazing Spaces and is a sight to behold.

Wherever you want to stay, you’ll most likely find a tree house B&B in the vicinity. So get searching for a night that will live long in the memory.

3) A lighthouse

Picture the scene: there’s a hurricane blowing outside the window. Waves crash ashore and coat the garden and house in fine salty spray. But you’re snuggled inside, log burner aglow as you hunker down against the storm.

Welcome to life in a lighthouse. You are right up against the sea, so get a profound sense of its elemental force. It is a multi-sensory experience, and the views are so good you won’t ever feel the need to leave.

If you do decide to venture into the great unknown, you’ll have endless coastal walks to choose from. This is the life, and you can have it in a variety of locations up and down the UK’s shoreline. Check out the Trinity House website for more information.

4) A bell tent or yurt

It may have become a cliché among middle-class staycationers, but a few nights of glamping rarely disappoint.

    ...the best glamping experiences offer the fun of campfires, shared canteens and plenty of open countryside to roam around.  

The basic rule of thumb is that your accommodation offers the perfect blend of down-to-earth real-world camping experience and comfort. Proper beds and flushing loos are the norm, as are log burners and relaxing seating areas.

By the same token, the best glamping experiences offer the fun of campfires, shared canteens and plenty of open countryside to roam around. Find your perfect yurt holiday here.

5) A campervan

Rather than travelling to your accommodation, why not take it with you? A campervan is the ideal way to satisfy your wanderlust: you can go wherever the wind blows, following your whims and exploring new places.

Moreover, you’ll have your home comforts right on tap, wherever you happen to visit. Fancy a warming cuppa while parked up in a beach car park? Just fire up the stove and get brewing. Feel sleepy after a mountain walk? Grab a half hour’s kip before hitting the road.

The archetypal campervan experience is of course behind the wheel of a Volkswagen, but there are loads of options from hire companies throughout the country. Find the one that works for you and enjoy the thrill of serendipitous travel, where you call the shots.

Published: 7 October 2019

© 2019 Just Recruitment Group Ltd

If you enjoyed this article, you may like: Six ways to keep the summer spirit alive

You may also enjoy: These five creatures can harm humans and they all live here

Jobs currently available

New job
Care Coordinator
Sector: Healthcare
Location: Colchester
Role: Full Time
Contract: Permanent
Job ref: BUC-CC
About the role

Back Up Care is recruiting for a Care Coordinator for their Colchester Office to work on the busy Healthcare desk.

Previous experience in scheduling care and support staff would be preferred and a healthcare background is an advantage. You will be extremely confident and well-presented and be able to use your own initiative.

This position will involve working alongside the Office Manager, supporting them with the day to day running of the desk.

The role will include:

  • Registration interviews with potential new candidates, and completion of all necessary compliance documents for successful candidates
  • Booking clients rotas to relevant active care staff, and ensuring that all care staff availability is booked to full potential
  • Service calls to clients that are using service meetings to ensure current clients’ needs are being met by Back Up Care
  • Telephone calls to prospect clients
  • Email and Mailers sent to prospect clients
  • Source leads for possible new business
  • Sales calls to obtain new business
  • Sales meetings to obtain new business
  • Ensure specialist software is updated with carer and client information and all bookings are entered onto the system
  • General administration duties
  • On-call rota duties

This requires you to work at an extremely fast pace, placing candidates into both temporary and permanent placements to match their qualifications, skills and experience.

There is a large amount of telephone calls liaison with candidates and clients, therefore excellent clear communicational skills are a must and excellent interpersonal skills are essential.

Other essential skills are:

  • An ability to work as part of a team and as a lone worker
  • A proven ability of effective time management and organisational skills
  • Excellent administrational skills are vital and attention to detail ensuring all candidates are compliant prior to assignment
  • Due to the requirements of the role, a driving licence and access to a vehicle for work purposes is essential

Holiday entitlement:

28 days holiday including public holidays, increasing to 33 days after 2-year service.

If you wish to apply for this role, please forward your CV to emma.brown@back-upcare.co.uk

Read more
New job
QA Manager
Sector: Engineering and Manufacturing
Salary: Discussed on application
Location: Saffron Walden
Role: Full Time
Contract: Permanent
Job ref: 910873
About the role

Our client is seeking an experienced Quality Assurance Manager to join them on a permanent, full-time basis. This opportunity offers stability, longevity and professional development.

Reporting directly to the MD, the Quality Assurance Manager will be responsible for:

  • Maintaining and improving the Company's Quality Management System and ensure internal compliance
  • Working with all departments to ensure their procedures are being followed and to improve their internal and cross-functional processes and procedures
  • Ensure that the quality of current and newly introduced products is compliant and traceable
  • Coordinate Quality activities with all over departments
  • Develop and improve quality relationships with all customers of the Company
  • Responsible for all Quality activities and personnel in the Quality Department for the Company
  • Provide strong leadership in the day-to-day operations of the Quality department and mentor the members of the team
  • Establish performance goals for all departmental employees and monitor performance on a continual basis
  • Oversee all hiring, appraisal, training and discipline of Quality personnel
  • Member of the Company's Management team
  • Produce the Quality element of the company's annual Budget
  • Formulate the departmental strategy aligned to the overall Company strategy
  • Embed a Continuous Improvement culture within the Quality Dept and contribute to the Continuous Improvement programme across the site

Requirements:

  • HND or equivalent qualification in Engineering or a related technical field required
  • Minimum 5 years experience in a Manufacturing environment
  • Ability to articulate (verbally and in writing), defend and negotiate Quality expectations with internal and external customers at all levels of management
  • Good interpersonal skills with the ability to guide and educate/train at all levels
Read more
New job
Customer Service Administrator
Sector: Customer Service
Salary: £22,000 per annum
Location: Halstead
Role: Full Time
Contract: Permanent
Job ref: 910871
About the role

Just Recruitment is delighted to be supporting a well-regarded organisation at the forefront of its sector that is looking to add a Customer Service Administrator to its team, due to growth – based on the outskirts of Halstead.

The main purpose of the role is to service current and prospective customers by receiving and processing orders, enquiries and general information in a timely and courteous manner.

Key tasks include:

  • Answering incoming calls, giving product information, lead times, dealing with general enquiries and queries, redirecting calls to relevant departments
  • Raising and inputting orders and proforma invoices
  • Raising quotations
  • Amending orders, as required
  • Scanning documentation
  • Liaising with Areas Sales Managers and responding to their requests
  • Arranging couriers and/or carriers as required
  • Any general office associated duties

Key requirements for the role:

  • Excellent computer skills
  • Good eye for detail
  • The ability to work well under pressure
  • Courteous

Previous experience requirements:

  • Previous Customer Service Administrative experience gained within an office environment
  • Excellent telephone manner with the ability to communicate at all levels
  • High level of attention to detail and accuracy
  • Good working knowledge of Microsoft Office and experience of in-house systems
  • Ability to multi-task and prioritise own workload
  • Exceptional communication skills, both written and verbal
  • Understanding of the importance of data protection and adherence to the process

Offering free parking and an excellent working environment, this is a great opportunity to join a growing team.

Working Monday to Friday 37.5 hours per week - offering a competitive salary and company benefits.

Read more
New job
Production Operative
Sector: Engineering and Manufacturing
Salary: £8.91 per hour
Location: Needham Market
Role: Full Time
Contract: Temporary
Job ref: 910811
About the role

Want to work in a safe, clean environment?
And have the possibility of ongoing work?

Just Recruitment is recruiting for a Temporary Production Operative to be based in Needham Market.

Duties include:

  • Ensure all final and completed products are packed to the customer specifications                               
  • Informing Line Leaders of defects found in the products
  • Keep machines supplied with packing materials and labels
  • Assist the Line Leaders with handovers and changeovers
  • Responsible for general cleanliness of the production area and removal of production and general waste
  • Check products on the line for quality and defects
  • Basic production duties carried out in a fast-paced environment

Working hours:

8.30am - 5.00pm Monday to Friday

Read more
New job
Logistics Coordinator
Sector: Transport, Logistics and Shipping
Salary: £24,000 per annum
Location: Ipswich
Role: Full Time
Contract: Permanent
Job ref: 910869
About the role

Just Recruitment is delighted to be supporting, a well-regarded, family-run business on the outskirts of Ipswich.

You will be responsible for assisting with the loads out operation of the business by ensuring that the process from collection to arrival at the final destination is fully supported by the relevant goods in haulage documentation.

You will also be supporting the sales function of the business by dealing with customer queries in terms of both sales and operations as well as assisting with various ad-hoc marketing campaigns. This is a very varied role and requires flexibility, commitment and a substantial desire to learn and grow with the flourishing business.

Duties will include:

  • Process orders and oversees the order to completion of paperwork
  • Facilitate the shipping of products from one destination to another
  • Arrange transportation with outside hauliers
  • Receive paperwork from the Weighbridge department and check and complete the paperwork within the allocated time allowed
  • Answer calls and emails relating to customer queries and log them on the CRM system and resolve any outstanding issues raised
  • Keep CRM records up-to-date
  • Work with the sales and operations team to ensure that high customer service levels are achieved and delivered to all customers you are responsible for at all times

Skills required:

  • Good Microsoft skills including Word, Outlook & Excel
  • Ability to work proactively on an independent basis as well as be a good team player
  • You will have the interpersonal skills necessary to develop and sustain effective relationships with team members of other departments and with all customers
  • Good attention to detail and analytical skills
Read more