Tim and I thought it was time to have a break from the hussle and bussle of city life and pack our bags and head to the beautiful Lake District.
We looked online and found a beautiful farm that needed people to help with general handyman jobs in exchange for accommodation and food. This sounded perfect, a week a way in the country, meeting new people and getting our hands dirty again.
Saying goodbye to our mates at the Queens Arms pub, we caught the 9:30am bus to Manchester train station and the 11:15am train towards Ulverston.
The train ride went for just shy of 2 hours and the outside scenery became more and more beautiful with every passing minute.
When we arrived in Ulverston we were greeted by our new ‘boss’ Ben, a very friendly guy who had once travelled to Australia and thoroughly enjoyed himself. We stopped at the local supermarket and grabbed a weeks worth of food before heading to the beautiful farm that we would be staying at for the next week.
When we arrived at Ashlack we were blown away with the beauty. The sun was shining, the fields were green as can be with thousands of sheep spotted around. Our sleeping arrangement was in a massive farmhouse called Beckstones, it slept 17 people!! Tim and I shared it with one other lady named Paolma from Madrid who had come for the week also. There were so many rooms, we couldn’t count them all.
Our first day we did a few jobs here and there, but because it was late afternoon when we arrived we ended a couple hours later and relaxed for a little while before heading down towards the lakes to take in the beauty of the Lake District.
Over the week we did varied jobs from varnishing floors, sanding and painting gutters and barn doors, cleaning car parts, feedings pigs, tidying up, weeding the vegetable gardens and cleaning and setting up the yurts for the next lot of visitors. Our walk to the farm was very scenic with creek beds, green paddocks, cows and beautiful stone cottages.
It was really good fun and the week flew. The sun was shining for 80% of our stay and we only had one working day where it rained and we had to find some inside jobs to do.
On the Saturday it was our day off so we decided to explore the property of Ashlack. Walking down the long driveway we bumped into Richard, one of the good friends of Ashlack’s owner Mark. He asked if we wanted to go see the local agricultural show, which we happily said yes to.
The agricultural show was great, reminded me of my high school days with the horse, cow and sheep shows, agility trials, horse jumping and biggest vegetable competition. We stayed for 3 hours exploring until the show closed and it was time to head back.
On our way back Richard asked if we wanted to see anymore of the English countryside. He drove us through narrow windy roads, took us to two cozy pubs were we had a pint and showed us fields where stone igloos remains were from the Bronze Age, which was interesting to see.
By the time we got back to Ashlack the sun had set and it was time to cook some dinner. We picked some fresh vegetables from the garden and made a nice vegetable pasta mash up, using the fresh veg and all the food we had left in the fridge. The last two nights of our stay we moved into the caravan, which was a lot easier to keep warm and invited Richard in for some dinner and wine to say thank you for today’s tour.
Overall our week experience at Ashlack was great, Tim and I will definitely like to do more experiences like these as you never know who you will meet, what you will see and the memories you will make.