Help us renovate our home - a 17th Century converted pub near Dartmoor National Park, UK


United Kingdom

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 Min stay requested: 1 week or less

  • Description


    We are a happy and relaxed couple looking for help with our new 17th century home (previously an old coaching inn), mostly with some heavy duty work in the garden, painting and decorating, but odd jobs around the house too.

    We need to replace the original pub garden decking soon, which Rob can do, but would like a helping hand. It will require heavy lifting, and getting dirty, as we do not know what is underneath the decking until we remove it.

    Other projects on the list are to remove a wooden mezzanine ceiling from up high (but only if you like heights!), painting most of the rooms, clearing the garden - working out what is a fruit tree, and what is a weed! Lucy is a big fan of sustainability and permaculture, and in time she should like to start creating vegetable beds.

    We love cooking, and love to learn new recipes so if you have a love of cooking too, that would be great!

    We have both been workawayers, and want to give back the experience, so we can show you round the area and send you off on other fun adventures too.

    This will be our first time hosting, and so we are keen to find a grown-up, sensible, good-natured individual or couple with a really great attitude, who are happy to work hard, and be an active part of the household. We definitely like to relax hard too when the work is done - it is what keeps us motivated! And there is no better place to relax than the Devon countryside.

    The main job in the garden will require a bit of muscle power, and some old clothes as it could be pretty muddy work. But there are plenty of other tasks indoors too, for wet weather days.

    We look forward to hearing from you soon!

    Lucy and Rob

  • Type of help

    Type of help

    General Maintenance
    Cooking / shopping
    Help in the house

  • Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    We love spending time in Dartmoor National Park, or out cycling, or wild swimming. So we can show you around and take you to some great spots. Rob is on the Mountain Rescue team so knows the moor really well - Im sure you'll get to meet the team! Perhaps you can try out some Dartmoor Letterboxing...

    Lucy is soon to qualify as a natural health practitioner - she is in her fourth year of study, and has a small clinic on the back of the house. She is into all things permaculture, natural, organic, recycling and would love to teach you, or learn from you, small steps to a more sustainable life. Lucy is also in a choir, and loves playing the piano and singing.

    Rob loves doing ultra-marathons, outdoor challenges, on bike or foot, running or walking, so would be more than willing to take you out on some adventures.

    We like seeing friends, cooking and spending time with Robs children (13 and 15) who live about an hour away. They visit every other weekend. The kids like playing piano, (we have a piano here), football (oh, we have lots of footballs here!), and dogs. We don't have a dog yet, but we all love dogs, and would love one soon.

    We don't have chicken's yet either, but thats in the plan. There is a chicken coup and large chicken run, waiting to be uncovered from the wild garden and weeds...! There are horses in the field next to our house, and plenty of wild horses on Dartmoor. In fact, wild everything on Dartmoor, including sheep, highland cattle, ponies and some pretty wild people too!

  • Help


    We have moved into our new 17th century converted pub, (now our home) - the garden is wild, the old pub decking is rotten, and the house needs lots of love!

    As per above, one task would be to help Rob remove and replace a vast amount of decking in the garden. We will not know what is underneath it until we start, so it will likely be tough, and muddy work, so bring some old clothes.

    We have lots of other tasks indoors - mostly painting rooms, but also the removal of a wooden mezzanine floor up high. Rob is happy to be up the ladder, but needs someone to pass the wood down to, while Lucy is out at work. There may also be some general household tasks.

    We would love to host an experienced builder, handyman, gardener, tree surgeon, landscaper, architect or someone with similar experience! But a keen and strong, hard worker who is not shy of the British weather will equally enjoy staying with us.

    Aside from the work experience, we would like to welcome you as part of the household, so we would love you to join in with your share of cooking and washing up etc, alongside us.

  • Languages spoken

    Languages spoken

    English, and French (intermediate)

  • Accommodation


    A room in our family home. We have three 'bathrooms' but only one that is really functional (until we get round to working on them!) for everyone to share. We are on a natural spring, which means the water is healthy and tastes delicious, but we have to keep showers fairly short. We try to shower just once a day where possible.

    Lucy wants to build a compost loo out in the garden one day too, if you want to help with that?! So then we will have a downstairs loo too!

    We think the house has a lovely, welcome feeling. As it is an old house, it might feel a little cold if you are used to hot weather, so bring warm socks or slippers for your feet, and be prepared to wear warm clothes! But please don't let this put you off - we have log burners and good heating!

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    We live on a great, rural bus route, ideal for local day trips, or to get into Exeter for onward travel. There are no buses in the evening, but we have a pub in our village.

    It is easy to camp, wild camp or wild swim on Dartmoor, and there is so much countryside, public footpaths and beaches to explore (the beaches are further away but would make a good day trip).

    The small city of Exeter is about 45mins on the bus, with plenty to see and do - it is a university city, with a beautiful cathedral and a lovely quay to the mouth of the river Exe.

    We have a small Co-op grocery shop in the village that sells everything, and a big supermarket about 6 miles away on the bus.

  • A little more information

    A little more information

    • Internet access

    • Limited internet access

      Limited internet access

    • We have pets

    • We are smokers

  • How many Workawayers can stay?

    How many Workawayers can stay?

    More than two

  • ...

    Hours expected

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

Rob plaining the original worktops in the kitchen.
The kitchen is now fully functional - we have kept the original kitchen in place. We are keeping all the original old features, and mixing them with some modern touches to make it nice and light.
Fruit from the garden. There are lots of lovely trees - a project for next year, unless anyone wants to take them on sooner!
Part of the decking that needs removing, as it is rotten and likely not to survive until Spring!
Lucy and the electric sander.
The bottom of the garden. In need of some attention!
This was a greenhouse we discovered when we moved in. It is now cleared and awaiting use. We can't wait to produce our own food.
Rob's kids are amazing. They live about an hour away, and come and stay with us every other weekend.
We have plenty of maps, travel and adventure reads - mostly for Devon, Dartmoor, Scotland and then much further afield!
Host ref number: 232558365524