Looking for an independent, self motivated DIYer for our cottage in the British Lake District, UK!

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  • Description


    Whilst it's our first time on WorkAway, we've previously used a site like this before, for someone who might be interested in DIY, and it was a great success for both parties.

    So, we thought we'd try it again, offering a rural, winter, British Lake District base in exchange for a good dose of interior and exterior painting, a bit of pottering in the garden if you enjoy such things; and a lot of enjoying a very laid back, fairly off grid lifestyle for a couple of weeks.

    The dates would be between this September and December 2017; with a duration that felt fair to both parties once we've discussed what your interests and skills are; and how many of the odd jobs you'd feel able to take on.

    We'd estimate there's 2-3 weeks worth of pleasantly busy days; interspersed with time out exploring or rainy days when you'd prefer to take a day off in front of the fire with a book :-) There's also the idea of using it as a kick off point for a Scottish adventure: for example, you could spend a week or two with us, then head up to Scotland; then come back for a week or two.

    Please get in touch if you'd like to know more!
    Caroline and Carl

  • Type of help

    Type of help

    General Maintenance

  • Help


    Our ideal Applicant would:

    *️️️️️ Feel able to tackle a variety of tasks, for example: painting (specifically interior and exterior woodwork), basic gardening (pruning, weeding etc.) basic joinery should it arise (i.e. sawing or drilling if a curtain rail needs strengthening for example) and a generally logical mind, and an enjoyment from problem solving!

    *️️️️️ Be comfortable working unsupervised, and have the self motivation, work ethic, and satisfaction of working alone (or with your family/travel buddies)

    *️️️️️ Have their own transport (it’s a rural area, and, although we are very thorough and organised in terms of providing supplies; there will inevitably need to be some runs out to pick up more of something we’ve forgotten or run out of!)

    *️️️️️ We are open to an individual, couple, or family group applying. All three bedrooms are available for your use (that is when they’re not being painted!)

    *️️️️️ Be confident and competent working both to a thorough brief, but also on their own initiative.

    *️️️️️ To this end, also be happy to assume liability for their own safety and work processes - in the same way as looking after pets is based on common sense and trust; it would be for going up a ladder, or using a strimmer!

    *️️️️️ Enjoy an off-grid-ish lifestyle. The cottage deliberately doesn’t have live TV or wifi (although the local pubs do!); has a septic tank and calor gas stove (although you wouldn’t know either of these were the case), has a multifuel stove supplemented by freestanding and fan heaters (rather than mains gas central heating) and is at the end of a pot hole filled track; although manageable with a normal car. We have a teeny tiny ‘city car’ that manages just fine, and our neighbours used to have a Jag which managed too - but is worth pre-knowledge of, particularly if your car is your pride and joy! If you're up for filling some of these potholes: all the better!

    *️️️️️ Although there is no wifi in the cottage; the majority of our communication would need to be by email; as we travel a lot ourselves for work. An excuse to visit the pub regularly in any event!

    *️️️️️ We have successfully had such an arrangement through a similar site before: we are looking for someone who is able to be autonomous and self motivated, as there won’t be anyone on site alongside you, other than your group, or other WorkAway-ers.

    *️️️️️ Enjoy the neighbours and being a part of the neighbourhood; and get a kick out of doing something a bit different!

  • Languages spoken

    Languages spoken


  • Accommodation


    The cottage is a characterful 3 bedroom, former coach house, on the West Coast of Cumbria; which you would occupy either alone, with your family/travelling group; or with another Applicant, dependant on the nature of the Applications we get. We'll discuss with everyone what they'd feel comfortable with before confirming.

    It has one family bathroom; a well equipped, farmhouse kitchen; cozy living room with multifuel stove, and plenty of space to spread out. The master bedroom occupies the whole of the top floor, and has its own seating area: a real haven!

    It is the central of three cottages, on a communal courtyard, shared with our neighbours. It is a residential environment, but being at the end of a track (complete with characterful potholes!) and with footpaths and fields leading straight from the door, it's also a quirky and adventurous.

    There are lots of animals around the property: livestock (sheep and cows) in the fields, plus our neighbour's dogs, cats, chickens and ducks. It's a great environment for children.

    The cottage is our dream home, but when we aren’t able to live there ourselves, we rent it out to holidaymakers, so it's a lovely, homely space; with lots of outdoor activities locally.

    All utilities, including wood, coal and kindling would be provided.

    It would be self catering, with you purchasing your own food and utilising the well equipped farmhouse kitchen.

    The Winter is quieter, so we use it as an opportunity to do ‘Spring Cleaning’ and maintenance.

    Whilst we are currently without pets, the cottage is surrounded by fields, and our neighbours have dogs and chickens which really add to the homely atmosphere of the neighbourhood. You can access fields and footpaths straight from the front door; and the local pub is 100 meters away at the end of the track!

    We are looking for an Applicant from as soon as possible, not extending beyond 21st December, for 2-3 weeks dependant on your availability and the extent of the jobs you'd be interested in tackling. We have a thorough Google Document which we would share with you before confirming; to check you're happy with the type of jobs involved.

    The beach, which is 2 miles away, has stunning views over the Irish Sea to the Isle of Man, and the cottage is just 7 miles from Wastwater, Britain’s Favourite View winner a few years ago. It's a gorgeous part of the world, and the staying at the cottage is like stepping back in time.

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    You will need a car so you can be independent, and nip out for any supplies you may need. However, there is a local pub and shop within 10 minutes walk; and a non mainline train station, 3 miles away. There are no regular buses. The area is one of England's National Parks and recently attained UNESCO World Heritage status; and attracts nearly 16 million visitors annually, who come for the world famous walks, lakes and views. Our neighbourhood in the Western Lake District also has the benefit of being near the coast.

  • How many Workawayers can stay?

    How many Workawayers can stay?

    More than two

  • Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    The benefit of the location is getting back in touch with nature. Although there are all the mod cons, and neighbours, and shops; it is also a fairly remote (for the UK) and a relatively off-grid lifestyle (in terms of no gas central heating); although there are plenty of heat sources in addition to the multifuel fire, which also acts as the boiler.

    There are many world famous walks almost from the doorsteps, lots of local pubs, and the sea is also a couple of miles from the cottage.

    We will be on hand to answer all and any questions you may have; before, during and after, by email; and there is also lots of local information in the cottage; but we are also looking for an Applicant that is self motivated and feels able to, and enjoys, working independently, without supervision.

  • ...

    Volunteering hours expected

    Maximum 3-4 hours a day, 5 days a week

My Photo Album

Our garden, with views from the bottom, between the trees, over the Lakeland Fells.
The back of the cottage. There are also great views of the Fells from the top windows, and the other windows are amongst what we'd like your help painting!
The river and field at the end of the track by the cottage - about 2 minutes walk from the front door :-)
The sunset over the Irish Sea at the beach - 5 minutes drive from the cottage.
Wastwater - 15 minutes drive from the cottage, and former winner of 'Britain's Favourite View'.
Carl and Caroline celebrating 4th July in Texas!
Host ref number: 585172751899