3/9/2015 0 Comments
Cork-based couple have their sights set on the glamping market with a new small-build venture drawing on their combined craft and design skills. Project manager Tanya Rodgers and her husband, joiner Mark Rodgers, set up Irish Shepherd’s Huts last year in Castletownbere in West Cork, to bring the traditional shepherd’s hut to a new generation.
The pair had been developing the business since 2010 from their former home in Northwest England, after unintentionally finding a willing customer for a shepherd’s hut they had built for their own use.
“We lived in a little village and someone was driving past the house one day and stopped and asked us what we were building. They bought it from us and we thought ‘well if they’re that popular, we’d better start investigating them a bit more’,” said Mark Rodgers.
The History of The Irish Shepherd's Hut
Dating from the 19th century, shepherd’s huts were originally used during the lambing season. The wooden structures had iron wheels and corrugated iron roofs, offering their oc- cupants mobile living quarters alongside their flock.
“Shepherd’s huts are very well built, they’re sturdy. A lot of these garden offices you see now are not insulated very well,” said Rodgers. “They’re not suitable for all the year round. You can use the shepherd’s hut 52 weeks of the year, regardless of the weather.
The Rodgers have invested €45,000 to get their venture moving, wiring their huts for electricity and kitting them out with modern luxuries such as wifi and underfloor heating. They build, on average, eight- huts a year, which are made to measure, costing from €10,450 for 12 feet by 7 feet of floor space.
“We’ve got a variety of customers now,” said Mark. “We’ve got an enquiry from a lady who wants to take one back to Scotland to live in it – we can put bathrooms in them, en-suite. “In Ireland, there are hundreds of Glamping sites already using pods, yurts – all kinds of things. “We’ve had two other en- quiries – one from Wexford and one from Dublin, for summer houses – and we have another for an office.” As well as homeowners, the Rodgers are eyeing the growing glamping market in Ireland and Britain.
“In Ireland, there are hundreds of Glamping sites already using pods, yurts – all kinds of things.
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