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help exchange   Host 56512
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Help Exchange

All Year: Spring/summer/autumn
Area (ha): 2.5
Persons: 2
Category: Other
Host ID: 56512
Country: England

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Last Updated: June 11, 2018

This is my very first listing on and it went live on Feb 10th 2017 . . . the Red Berry Field site is just reaching the stage where we can begin to invite helpers to visit - the facilities at the moment are fairly basic, but we will be steadily making improvements, and we look forward to learning how best to work with helpx visitors.

Please bear with us as we learn and improve :)

The 6 uploaded photos have been chosen to show the general nature and situation of the site and what's contained here.

We are a mainly off-grid rural site on the North side of Kit Hill (East Cornwall local landmark) with a traditional Cornish cottage, stone barn (yet to be converted into living accommodation) and 6-acre [2 hectare] field.

The site faces more or less due North towards Dartmoor [visible on the horizon beyond the off-white Yurt in one photo].
I live in that Yurt [16ft diameter] on the field. A young couple (Lea & Emma) occupy another Yurt, and have 3 young children between them - the children are here at different times.
A 3rd Yurt [larger 20ft diameter - the light brown one on decking in the photo] is rented out to visitors at various times ... one option would be for Helpx-ers to stay in this, but there will be another Yurt or 2 by spring/summer 2018 and there's plenty of room to camp.
We're constantly improving the site and there's lots to get involved in - from cultivating & planting in the main Cottage vegetable garden [and expanding its size and range] to clearing land and preparing for cultivation in larger areas of Red Berry Field itself. Also care and management of the horticultural garden with flowers and shrubs planted by the host's parents in the 70's & 80's.
The main {traditional Cornish} Cottage needs maintanence and small improvements - some new guttering here, a minor water leak there, rendering & painting the outside of the garages, tidying up & making small improvements in a variety of existing areas.

There's also general light construction work to be done in and around the main site e.g. light carpentry, helping to construct timber-framed outbuildings/stores/compost toilets, and the conversion of a stone barn into future living accommodation.
You could help with building a compost toilet; re-pointing the stone barn; shaping & lining a duck pond; building a duck-house on a small island in the middle of the pond; cutting back & clearing overgrown areas; weeding; improving footpaths; designing & making signs to help visitors find their way around . . . the list is long, and keeps growing all the time!

The cottage [called Hingstone House] is rented by a very nice retired couple who are personal friends of mine. I live on the land which is a part of the complete property.

We have done extensive groundworks & landscaping over the last 12 months, with 3 self-drive excavator hire sessions - the list of tasks done is too long to detail here, but we have started to reshape the sloping field in some selected areas - inspired by the terraced hillsides and steep slopes of many foreign countries e.g. paddy fields etc of the Far East ... so currently we have the beginnings of three level terraces running parallel to the long-sided boundaries of the land.
We also have the beginnings of a small Forest Garden in one area, having planted several Fruit & Nut trees 24 months ago.

We hope that over the next few years we will be able to move ever closer towards a site where food crops can be grown, visitors can rent a Yurt for peaceful breaks/holidays, retreats/residential group workshops etc, and Help-exers/Wwoofers etc can visit, share & contribute in the progress & development of Red Berry Field.

There has been no 'official' and 'clever' plan overall since we opened the access track into the land which adjoins the main cottage in August 2008, and what has transpired since then has been the 'natural' result/s of everyone that has passed through here and contributed their ideas & enthusiasm - this combination has largely shaped the overall direction of the site ...
Now we have a much clearer idea of what can work best. With the land opened up more through the excavation and reshaping work we've done so far, there are now many areas/projects that people could get involved with and contribute towards.

Any further questions - please don't hesitate to ask.

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