Help in our garden and some DIY projects in rural Co. Down, UK


United Kingdom

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 Min stay requested: at least 2 weeks

  • Description


    We are retired farmers living in rural Co. Down. Our daughter has returned from Australia to live on the farm and has introduced us to permaculture.
    Co. Down is an area of drumlins (small hills), narrow roads and hedges making it both interesting and beautiful. Our farm has views of the Mourne Mountains, The Sperrins and Belfast. We have many local National Trust properties nearby, including those used to film The Game of Thrones and The GoT have opened an exhibition centre close to us, which is very popular. (See their website)
    Our nearest seaside resort is 40 minutes drive; it is beside a long stretch of beach, owned by the National Trust, where grey seals bask, as well as having sand dunes with flora and fauna.
    We try to live sustainably - reduce, reuse, recycle - and try to reduce our carbon footprint. We have solar electricity and use our own wood for heating.
    We are not vegetarians, but do not eat meat every day. While appreciating vegan principles, we eat eggs, butter, etc. most days so find vegans difficult to fit into our lifestyle.

  • Types of help and learning opportunities

    Types of help and learning opportunities

    Help with Eco Projects
    DIY and building projects
    Creating/ Cooking family meals
    Help around the house
    General Maintenance
    Help with Computers/ Internet

  • UN sustainablity goals this host is trying to achieve

    UN sustainablity goals this host is trying to achieve

    UN goals
    No poverty
    Zero hunger
    Good health and well-being
    Quality education
    Gender equality
    Clean water and sanitation
    Affordable and clean energy
    Decent work and economic growth
    Industries, innovation and infrastructure
    Reduce inequality
    Sustainable cities and communities
    Responsible consumption and production
    Climate action
    Life below water
    Life on land
    Peace, justice and strong institutions
    Partnerships for the goals
  • Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Ireland has many cultural sites, some of them dating thousands of years. We have a few archeological sites quite near us, but the Giants Causeway on the North Coast is too far for a day trip - some volunteers go for a weekend. Depending on the time of year there may be festivals, otherwise we can direct volunteers to cultural events and entertainments.
    Belfast is now a vibrant city and is approx. 50 minutes by bus. The bus to Dublin takes two hours and it calls at Dublin airport.
    We are happy to share our knowledge of soil regeneration and gardening with you.
    There will be opportunities to learn to bake bread, as well as cakes and pastries. In season, you may help with processing produce into jams, chutneys and pickles.

  • Help


    We need volunteers who are interested in the environment and biodiversity. You MUST have experience of gardening e.g. know a plant from a weed and be able to work unsupervised.

    We have two wooded areas and need help to shape them by pruning in the winter during the dormant season, tidying, providing for wildlife, etc. They are great places to practice meditation, yoga or tai chi.

    Our garden always needs attention, especially our organic vegetable garden where we try to grow as much of our own food as possible. We mostly follow permaculture principles, using the ‘no dig’ method. As well, we have planted up additional fruit trees to start a fruit forest.
    We enjoy our flowers and grow bee friendly species. We have tried to make our flower garden easier to manage, but of course, there are always weeds!

    We are restoring the farmhouse next door so any DIY skills would be useful. As well we need help to tidy, paint and repair our farmyards. The garden is our priority, any other skills would be a bonus.

  • Languages spoken

    English: Fluent
    French: Intermediate

  • Accommodation


    The accommodation is in a caravan beside us. This has mains electricity and running water, toilet and gentle shower, though we allow volunteers to use our bathroom and share our main meals.
    You are welcome to use our sitting room to read, etc. It has a small television and a stereo player. But we hope you would spend some time in the den with us as we enjoy learning about other lifestyles.
    If COVID-19 returns, it would be extremely difficult to keep you with us as the cooking facilities in the caravan have been disconnected.

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    Our small local town (approx. 10 mins. drive) has coffee shops, cinema etc. and we are willing to take volunteers there and will collect you up to 11 pm. Otherwise, there are plenty of taxis.

    Our farm is a good place to “chill out”. But if you are interested in lively nightlife, we are not for you. Banbridge has little hotel accommodation, so bars only have music at weekends and currently that would be modern or country, but not traditional.

    Two people are ideal, being company for each other. We will try to take volunteers on outings, especially at weekends and depending on government guidelines.

    You would be living in a caring environment where we focus on others qualities and we aim to show love and respect to everyone.

  • A little more information

    A little more information

    • Internet access

    • Limited internet access

      Limited internet access

    • We have pets

    • We are smokers

    • Can host families

  • Can host digital nomads

    Can host digital nomads

    We now have full fibre broadband with reasonable speeds.

  • Space for parking camper vans

    Space for parking camper vans

    Living on a farm, we have several areas suitable for a camper van.

  • How many Workawayers can stay?

    How many Workawayers can stay?


  • ...

    Hours expected

    Maximum 5 hours a day, 5 days a week

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Host ref number: 835512413446