Our Story And Meet Our Team
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" a 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 your 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 four dogs, Slap and Tickle who are the staffies, and we have two German Shepherds. Our family also extends to two horses who are called Dollop (because he is a big orange dollop of a horse) Murphy, who is also known as Donkey because he sometimes can be as stubborn as one. 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 four dogs of assorted sizes we know only too well 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!!)
With the above in mind 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 & Greenway in 2010, and welcomed our first guests in October that year and then in 2012 we added the Quantock Hide which is our flagship property 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 97% 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 7 house-keepers, 2 maintenance chaps and one part time Gardener.
Karen is my right hand girl and I refer to her as our Nanny. Although we don't have children Karen 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 which Karen is, as she has a fondness for all things pink and purple and that goes for her hair as well!
Meet The House Keeping Team
We are very lucky in that we have an exceptional team of 7 house keepers who take as much pride in preparing the cottages for guests as we do. Although each house keeper has their own area within each cottage that they do, it is very much a team and family effort. Kate (known as Sparky Kate) looks after kitchens, and her husband is our electrician. The other Kate (known as Holford Kate) also does kitchens and she and her son Jan (who looks after living rooms) do the home cooked food delivered to the cottage service under the Treats section. Alana who looks after bedrooms offers guests a bespoke cake making services for those guests who are celebrating a birthday or special occasion.
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 God send 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 propper" gardner who comes once a month to do the specialist work in the cottage gardens.
We have four canine family members. These are Slap and Tickle who are the staffies, 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 and silly Santa hats - well the Quantock Cottages is very much a team and family effort after all!