The year was 1996. After moving house back in February and our eldest daughter’s wedding in the August,I was sat having a cup of tea and flicking through the local paper (that I don’t normally but)as it had our daughters wedding photo in it, I spotted an advert for a large country cottage to rent. After speaking to John and much deliberation I rang and booked an appointment to view it.
As we were walking around out of the blue I said “we could run a B&B from here” don’t know why I said it I hadn’t got any background in the hospitality sector, I hired and sold ladies hats and wedding attire a far cry from B&B.
We went home buzzing not sure how we could afford it after already moving once and a wedding in 7th months, but then sadly we lost a very dear friend to cancer and it made our decision for us to live for the moment.
So we moved onto Brecks in November the weekend of our wedding Aniversary and Brecks Cottage Bed & Breakfast was up and running Easter 1997.
With the help of local people who ran B&B’s they sent us their overflows,. Mark Hawes first visited Sept 1997 and still comes to stay, and the Mcfadyean’s first came August 1998 and again still visit in fact one of our double rooms is named after them.
The business steadily grew bringing us guests from all walks of live and all over the world.
Then in 1998 John was diagnosed with cancer and later passed away in 2003. Without going into details it left myself and my youngest daughter with a fight on our hands, but with the help of a few close friends I managed to take over the mortgage and keep the home and business I loved.
I turned the large bathroom into 2 ensuites, and we sold 4 of the horses and the lorry and turned our brick barn and stable into 2 triple rooms (That’s another story) so that we could pay the mortgage, and here we are our 20th year next year and I’m still living in my beautiful home and doing the job I love.
My Plans for the Barn & Stable are not exactly as I wanted, same design, but the planning and disability discrimination act dictated the size and the way the rooms should be laid out if I wanted the planning permission so I had to take 9” off the ground floor bedroom and add it on to the wet room, even though my design the wet room was big enough for a wheel chair. I explained that although the rooms were perfect for people with limited mobility, fully disable people would still need to come over to the house to eat and that in itself possed a problem of how to get in the Cottage, to which we have tried to and I think made it possible with a little help.
I had to follow their instructions as having these rooms in use was an important factor in helping me keep Brecks Cottage.
The rooms are suitable for 3 adults or 2 adults and 2 children and we also allow pets with well behaved owners.
As this building was built at the same time as the cottage, we had to have the walls insulated to Building Reg standard and they are very warm but in doing so they are lined with king span and therefore no wi fi signal gets through but it is available in the house.