We are all for romance and all for honeymoons. I couldn’t resist starting with this historic photo (of a photo) of a wedding at Orchard Farm about a century ago, when the barns really were working cowsheds and the facilities in the house not much less primitive (which they still were when we bought the house nearly 30 years ago). The wedding party does look rather serious, but possibly that was because they had to stand still for several minutes while the photographer took the picture, and possibly the happy couple did not have a very romantic honeymoon to look forward to, or even a honeymoon at all; it may very possibly have been a case of straight back to work on the farm after the festivities were over.
Expectations tend to be higher these days. In the more recent past we have welcomed many a happy newlywed couple to Orchard Farm, often in the winter but just as often in the summer months. It must have seemed rather incongruous therefore and actually quite embarrassing now we think about it that we insisted that all summer weeks (April through to the end of September) had to start on a Friday. As most weddings are on Saturday this was insensitive.
We have, not before time, had a change of heart. Next year, if you wish to book a Monday to Monday week during the summer in either barn, and if the dates are available, please feel free to do so. We will then market the short break that inevitably will result, but we won’t accept short break bookings in advance unless there is already a short break availability created. Does this make sense…? If a Friday to Friday week has been booked immediately after a Monday to Monday week – or vice versa of course, we are then left with a midweek gap which can be booked as a short break.
The change of heart is quite sincere, but it took a booking calamity to force it upon us. Completely innocently a guest booked his honeymoon starting on a Monday, and the online system (mistakenly but very fortuitously as it turns out) allowed the booking. Assuming without checking that the dates were for a week starting on Friday I confirmed the booking in good but foolish faith which led to some general re-thinking. And the more we thought, the more we thought how obvious ir was that we should be more flexible. So, a big sorry to all those honeymooner in the past who have so uncomplainingly accepted a shortened week’s honeymoon, and welcome to all those who may yet be planning a full length week’s honeymoon following a Saturday wedding in the future.
And welcome to those who now can actually book a midweek short break. To start with, look at the availability for Monday 28 May to Friday 1 June in Douglas’s Barn…