You’re not, strictly speaking, ‘camping’ at a Feather Down Farm. You’re staying in ‘tented accommodation’. It’s a small distinction, but it acts as a good indication of what you can expect at this mini-chain of boutique campsites. This is Luxury Camping in roomy three-bedroom pre-erected tents, perfect for the ‘not sure about this camping lark’ section of the community, who might baulk at the idea of trying to put up a tent in the rain. Or for families looking for a good-value alternative to renting a holiday home. Or, indeed, for just about anyone, really – these tented palaces are cool, comfortable and fun. Feather Down Farms recruit farmers with excess, redundant land, then they transport and erect their high-spec, custom-designed tents at the farm, organise the marketing and reservations, and let the farmers take care of the day-to-day management. The Feather Down team and the farmers share the proceeds appropriately; and everyone’s happy. Lipley Farm is the first Feather Down farm in Shropshire, the county the poet A.E. Housman described as ‘the quietest place under the sun’. Here, the owners give you a real insight into what it takes to produce milk from 130 Friesians and Holsteins. They invite guests to have a go at milking – by helping them to place the units on the cows’ udders. The guests can’t believe Stephen’s knowledge of the herd – he knows every cow by its number without looking at its freeze brand (the numbers on their bottoms). Younger guests love to test him on the Farm Tour! They also love seeing calves being born, and this summer the pig Flo will also be having babies. Bishop’s Wood, at the end of the road, is a 999-acre Church Commission woodland – see if you can find its Giant’s Chair or wind chimes. The five Feather Down tents are backed into Rushymoss Wood, so they feel sheltered, while the view from each is uninterrupted. Groups have often commented on how well the layout works for them, and they love the fire pit that brings everyone together in the middle of the field. The owners are looking forward to welcoming you to this place where peace meets quiet.
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