I retired from a life in the art gallery/interior design business a few years ago while my wife very recently ended her career as on occupational therapist in the health service. Our two children now live in Scotland so we have a large house to ourselves and three cats.
We have an 18th century house that we have modernised and sits in 2 acres of garden including grassland, pond and vegetable patch. Oh! and a piste for playing petanque (boules). The house is in the country, outside the small County Antrim village of Aghalee close to the eastern shores of Lough Neagh, the largest inland body of water in Britain and Ireland.
From our local village there is a bus service to Lisburn (10 miles and Belfast 20 miles). Moira train station (5 miles away) is on the main line from Belfast to Dublin which is about 100 miles away.
This project could involve children. For more information see our guidelines and tips here.
I am active on the traditional Irish music scene which is very lively in the area, playing the bodhran, the Irish traditional drum. Musicians in our local session include people who have performed on the international stage. There are regular local pub sessions and every night of the week there is music to be had in Belfast.
A few years ago we converted a field to the rear of our house into a garden. It requires continual maintenance and we are always wanting to add new features, plants and shrubs. Apart from helping me, as I am wanting to spend as much time as possible in the garden, suggestions and creative ideas will always be welcome for volunteers to leave their mark! The house also needs maintenance which will be light tasks like painting.
We offer a bedroom with both a double and single bed. You will have use of the main bathroom with shower and bath.
Nothing is too far away in Northern Ireland from the Mourne Mountains in County Down (45 minutes) to the Giants Causeway (just over an hour). We are always open to acting, whenever possible, as tourist guides and show guests our lovely countryside. Locally we have walks by Lough Neagh and along the, now disused, Lagan Canal. Just down the road is the RSPB bird reserve at Portmore Lough. Recent birds seen include Buzzard, Hen Harrier and Marsh Harrier, Tree Sparrow, Great Crested Grebe, Golden Plover and many duck species.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
This host can provide space for campervans.
5 hours per day and 5 days per week.
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