Paul and I live near the beautiful village of Helmsdale in the North East Highlands of Scotland. We have two children between us; Samuel, our son, is 20 years old and Emily, our daughter, is aged 15. We also have two dogs, four hens and a cornsnake! We bought our house a year ago. It has 1/2 acre of land around it which mainly consists of pine trees. It is located on a hill which overlooks the sea.
Our ambition is to become as self-sufficient as possible and also to provide accomodation for the many tourists who are attracted to the area in which we live.
Our guest will be very welcomed into our family and also the community where we live which has outstanding beaches, walks, history and scenery.
Help with Eco project
The place in which we live is situated in an area of natural beauty . There are many walks over the surrounding hills and the river which runs through the strath provides for some of the best salmon fishing in Scotland. Our guest could also go wild camping and try out panning for gold deposits in the streams which are scattered up the strath. The Jurassic boulder beds, which extend from the beaches in Helmsdale down to those in Brora, are unique to the area and provide the only oppurtunity to collect fossils in North Scotland. Wild seals can be sighted along the beaches and deer herds frequent the hills.
There is plenty of history in the area and a visit to Helmdale's Timespan museum gives an insight into our past, present and future. Further down the road is Dunrobin Castle. This is the ansestoral home to the Duke of Sutherland and is open to visitors to view the inside of the castle and its gardens. In the months of June to October there is a falconary show here, given by the castle's resident falconer.
We would welcome help with developing the land into two separate areas. One will be used to grow food organically and the other needs clearing in order to house a yurt with eco facillities. We also have a further project to convert an existing extention to the house into bed and breakfast accomodation. This will require full renovation and decoration.
Our guest will live with us in our croft cottage. They will have their own room with TV. As such we will all share the one bathroom, two toilets and kitchen. We will provide all the food and meals and our guest is welcome to use the kitchen whenever they wish. They will be very welcome in our home and treated as one of the family.
We are an easy-going family. I work part-time in the local shop and Paul is working on the projects around the home. Our daughter goes to school in Golspie and Samuel is currently in the USA doing a work placement.
There is a train station in Helmsdale and the village is also serviced by buses twice a day. There are two pubs in the village, a restaurant, cafe and a few local shops.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week