We really do try to keep on top of things, as best we can… On one level that is relatively easy, trying to keep a critically objective eye on the state of the barns, decorating and replacing before necessary rather than after, so that the barns always look pristine and well-equipped, although there are areas in the rapidly developing audio-visual/electronic equipment department where we feel distinctly less confident.
Talking of which, we go to lots of wonderfully stimulating workshops and conferences on using the Internet effectively, but every time one touches the same subject again things have already moved on apace, so we just do the best we can. Since earlier this year we have a wonderful new format for our website, thanks to a lot of hard work by our web-man/guru/friend, Jeremy Brough and I must add, quite a lot of input from us this end, too, as we realised how much of the original material needed refreshing, rewording or just completely rewriting!
We now have (almost) full control of what is on the website and blog, and are still learning (HTML codes etc). There is quite a lot to do to keep the sites fresh and reasonably interesting and relevant; we love our life here and all our guests, and writing for the website always feels like writing a letter to friends, or chatting on the phone, so that aspect is no hardship at all! But sometimes one is too close to see the obvious and we do genuinely want suggestions from people about our new website – what else we should do, what is misleading, confusing, unnecessary, hard to find.
Someone told us that our Policies (lurking under ‘More Info’) were difficult to locate so that is something to address. Another constructive suggestion came from Derek and Jenny – click on the link and see the comments below the post. Ensuring the comments on the various pages are kept up to date is quite time consuming and because not urgent, has tended to get left to last. So we have taken on board their suggestion that I may (probably already have) run out of steam and will gradually remove most of the comments from the various pages, maybe leaving one or at the most two (perhaps we shouldn’t date them, then it won’t be so obvious – there’s a thought)!
So anyone who wants to see what other guests have said will have to click through the various links to posts on the blog. There are straightforward comments from the Visitors’ Books, but also sometimes we have really useful comments and recommendations about walks and places to eat via email which is slightly different. But first, I must copy in the latest batch of snippets from the Visitors’ Books…
Douglas’s Barn is available to book for short breaks 3 or 4 nights between 2 and 20 May 2016. Bookings usually start on a Monday or a Friday but if you want a break that starts on a different day get in touch. We are very flexible with bookings.
There are some new attractions added to the list of treats available with the Premier Cottages special privileges card. Amongst them are Renishaw Hall, Thornbridge Hall Gardens (new discounts), Hassop Station Cafe, Village Green Cafe Eyam, Carsington Water Sports and Leisure, Hartington Cheese Shop.
There are still a few free dates at the end of March/April in both Tom’s and Douglas’s Barns. Short breaks, 3 or 4 nights, which are not normally available are on offer. Please look at availability and give me a call or book on line.