Our Story: The Beech Hanger Country Estate is thought to have been the hunting lodge of a wealthy Bristol Merchant. In 1911 the property appeared in Country Life magazine under the title of "a back to front sporting property." (The house is north facing - hence it was deemed to be back to front) In the article there is photograph showing a room which has a large open fire place and and wood paneling. This fire place and paneling is still here today, exactly as it was then and we use this room as our sitting room.
Over the years the property has undergone many changes of ownership and in 2010 we purchased it and a new chapter begun for us and the Estate. Please meet us and our extended "family" by using the drop down boxes below.
If you are like us, we like to know who we are talking to and emailing when we are organising our holiday. We are Emma & Simon. We are in our lateish 40's and lateish 50's (but we won't mention that one!) Simon runs an office logistics design and fit-out company, I run the horses, house and the luxury self-catering holiday cottage collection.
Our family consists of 3 dogs, Slap (we so sadly recently lost Tickle) who is a staffie, and we have two German Shepherds and we also have 3 horses. Before stumbling on this most stunning of areas, both Simon and I had done our time in London, we then lived in the Cotswolds for 15 years before deciding we wanted a change in life and life style so we moved to the Quantock's in Somerset.
Being owners of 3 dogs of assorted sizes we know how difficult it is to find any holiday cottage that will allow more than "one small well behaved dog." We sometimes came across properties that would allow more than one, but it was as if the owners were convinced that if their guests had the temerity to own dogs then they must want to go on holiday and stay in a place that for all intents and purposes could be a kennel (actually no I would not put my dogs in there!!)
We had a very firm view of what we wanted to achieve from the three cottages that we were going to build on the estate. We wanted each property to be what we would like go to if we ever get to go on holiday. We want all the toys and luxuries that we don't have at home, we want to be truly spoilt, we want to be quiet and private and we want the whole property and the surrounding area to be tranquil (well this bit we do have at home) and we would want somewhere that really welcomes dogs and not just tolerates them, because if our dogs are not relaxed and happy we can't relax. We wanted them to be proper homes with a heart and not just soulless holiday cottages. We Built Coleridge and Greenway in 2010, and welcomed our first guests in October that year and then in 2012 we added the Quantock Hide to our collection.
No slick and efficient operation can run without an amazing team behind the scenes and none more so when you have three very busy luxury dog-friendly cottages which are occupied circa 99% year round. We are incredibly lucky as we have the most awesome team of super-stars who make it all possible and it really is a team and family effort. The team consists of 5 house-keepers, 2 maintenance chaps and one part time Gardener.
Cara is my right hand girl and I refer to her as our Nanny. Although we don't have children Cara looks after us, the horses, the dogs, organises Simon and I. She organises the scheduling the cottage turnovers and generally keeps the "Good Ship Oliver" running. You will always know where Cara is as she has that wonderful sing song Welsh accent.
Meet The House Keepers.
We are very lucky in that we outsource our House Keeping to a fantastic local company called BWP. The have an exceptional team of 5 house keepers who take as much pride in preparing the cottages for guests as we do. Their main staff members have been with us for many years so they are very much part of the family and it is their attention to detail that delights and often astounds guests.
Meet The Maintenance & Gardening Team
In addition to the house keepers we also have 2 maintenance men. When Simon is not co-ordinating a major office design project he is Mr Maintenance. As you can imagine with 3 busy cottages this can be a 24/7 job. Simon is assisted by Martin on a Friday who is godsend and there is little he can't fix or mend. Martin also helps both Simon and I doing the cottage gardens on a weekly basis. We also have Terry who is a "grown up proper" gardener who comes once a month to do the specialist work in the cottage gardens.
Please forgive we are the lack of photos of the team, they are on their way!
We have three canine family members. These are Slap who is the staffie and we have two German Shepherds. As you will be able to tell from this website our dogs have to put up with quite alot in terms of being dressed up in hats and shades - well the Quantock Cottages are very much a team and family effort after all!
We have three horses. One is called Dollop (so called because he is a lovely big dollop of a horse) and we have Murphy and yes he is from Ireland and then we have Rockey (who Simon calls Pikey because he says he is a gypsy horse color - so rude!)
All 3 are big boys, standing at over 17 hh. Dollop and Murphy are 10 and Rockey is 8.
The Quantocks are are the perfect location for a luxury romantic holiday or mini-break and and also for a gathering of friends and family as it offers the best of the English countryside, yet is two hours closer to London and the Midlands than Cornwall or South Devon. Enjoy stunning beaches, swaths of open moorland and delicious local fayer and not forgetting the world-famous ciders and ales.
Although we have only 3 luxury holiday properties with open fires and hot tubs it is a huge team and family effort to ensure that our guests both 2 and 4 footed have the best time, so we thought you might like to see who we are.
There are always many questions one has when considering booking a unique luxury self-catering holiday cottage which is dog friendly. We hope to answer most of your questions on this website particularly on our FAQ page. But if not please feel free to contact us.
Being the owners of 3 dogs we appreciate that canines are very important members of the family and that they must enjoy a holiday as much as you do.