Sitter required for 3 weeks in July/August to care for house, garden, cat, chickens and ducks in an idyllic woodland setting

House Sitter Needed for Username: foresthouse   


Posted or Updated: Feb 26,2024   Reviews (1)   Applications: 4

Coleford, Coleford
Gloucestershire,Forest of Dean England

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From: Jul 16,24  
To:      Aug 7,24
Days:  23, Short Medium Term exact dates still to be confirmed

Our house is in the Forest of Dean, Gloucestershire, a historic mixed forest on the border between England and Wales. There are lots of opportunities for outdoor activities. For more information about the area look at live in an extended old worker's cottage in a small hamlet within a protected heathland area. Located at the end of a little lane with two other houses with friendly neighbours. The area is quiet with only neighbour's traffic and occasional walkers.

From the house footpaths lead straight into the woods with easy access to paths and cycle routes which crisscross the Forest on former railway tracks. Bikes are available to borrow. The area was significant in the early industrial revolution with quarries, collieries and iron works, now disused and very overgrown, apart from a few tiny family run collieries. A fascinating place to explore for those with an interest in early industrial archaeology. The house itself has central heating, a woodburner, solar water and photovoltaic panels, a rainwater harvester (for garden water), electric car charger, smart tv and high speed wifi.

The large kitchen/diner is fitted with an electric Aga cooker, fridge freezer, microwave and dishwasher, together with plenty of cooking equipment.

The sitting room is fitted with a wood burner and there is plenty of cut wood in the wood store.

Two double bedrooms will be available for your use, one with a double bed and one with  bunk beds. The upstairs bathroom is fitted with shower and bath; a separate toilet is downstairs. The house has the usual amenities.

The third of an acre garden is a combination of lawn, flower beds, rockery, vegetable patch, greenhouse and orchard. The garden will require some tending  mainly watering the greenhouse and young veg plants if very dry there may also be produce to pick. The garden is part of an old quarry and has lots of different levels with some high drops, it is therefore not suitable for toddlers.

It is a magnet for the local birds (if you feed them!), so if you like birdwatching this will be a wonderful spot for you.

Despite its rural situation it is possible to live here without a car. Coleford, with good butchers, bakers, greengrocers, supermarkets and cash points, is less than half an hour walk, or 10 minute cycle ride away. You could hire a car locally if you wanted to get a bit further afield. 

There is a regular hourly bus service a 15 min walk away into Coleford and to Gloucester where trains and buses run to all areas of the UK. Coleford is 3-4 hours by train, bus or car due west from London (200kms).

We are looking for someone who is happy to look after our cat, ducks  and 9 chickens (we will leave instructions for their care). In return you will have a supply of free range eggs. 

 We would appreciate at least a one day overlap to meet at the beginning to hand over.

House Sitter Feedback / endorsements (1)

“ Wonderful stay in rural Forest of Dean and River Wye-Valley ”

Sit Dates Jun-26-22 - Jul-21-22 Sitter wulfdr, Member Since Jun-28-21

This was my first house sitting and it was really great. Judith and George are really lovely hosts and took it upon themselves to pick me up from Bristol Airport and bring me back four weeks later. We had a handover day where the building services and the animal feeding procedures were explained to me, but for most of the first day they took me on an excursion and showed me the beautiful surroundings of the River Wye Valley and also all the shopping possibilities in Coleford. On the first evening George also explained to me the order of garbage collection and the placement of the garbage cans and introduced me to the neighbors.

After her departure I had the house and the large garden to myself for the following weeks. The chickens gave me fresh eggs every day and the garden rewarded me with fresh raspberries and other fruits. The garden and the animals (11 chickens, 2 ducks and a cat) didn't take much work allowing me to explore the River Wye Valley and the Forest of Dean. George gave me his bike for this, thank you again for that. Kushin, the cat, quickly got used to me and was then very trusting, although she spent most of her time outside in the garden and usually only came into the house to eat.

For all questions about building services (water supply, electricity, household appliances, etc.) and questions about mobility in the area (bus, taxi, car rental, etc.), George has created a really professionally structured manual that also contains all the current timetables for local buses and locations which contains stops with individual additions, that was really great and answered all questions. Here I was able to find the appropriate answers to certain questions. I was in constant contact with Judith via Whatsapp during her absence, so that smaller questions could be clarified immediately. I was able to work a little over the internet, the internet connection was stable and fast with the exception of two interruptions. There are occasional dropouts in phone reception in the area. I could watch TV in the evening, so I never got bored with the Netflix and BBC online offerings that were available in addition to the normal TV program.

In conclusion, the three and a half weeks went by far too quickly, so I said that if I were to come again, Judith and George would have to go on vacation for a much longer period of time.

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