This week we received an advance copy of Under the Tump: Sketches of Real Life on the Welsh Borders by Oliver Balch. The book features Pottery Cottage on the front cover, on the pages of the book, and is even referenced in the title. ‘Tump’ (or ‘twmp’) is the name for a castle mound, and Pottery Cottage is built under the Clyro tump, where a 13th century castle once stood.
Under the Tump will be published by Faber & Faber on May 19, 2016, and it is available for pre-order now. We will copies for sale at Pottery Cottage B&B from May, and of course Oliver will be happy to sign copies for guests!
We really enjoyed having an artist in residence at Pottery Cottage B&B for the last two weeks. Rebecca Spooner from Crickhowell transformed the room into a make-shift studio and spent two weeks paintings, reading, reflecting, and sketching in the surrounding area including Hay Castle and the River Wye down at The Warren. Rebecca described her stay as ‘such a magical time’, and seemed to enjoy having a quiet and private space with great natural light, and close enough to Hay for her to walk there each day. Artists and writers are very welcome at Pottery Cottage, we’d love to have more people using it as a bit of a retreat. Do contact us to ask about available slots in the diary (the summer is very full, but there are still plenty of gaps from September onwards).
Spring has sprung, and down by the River Wye levels have dropped and the beaches have reappeared. The Warren in Hay is a special spot for locals – and guests at Pottery Cottage too! The Warren is one mile down the hill from the B&B. Cross the bridge and turn left down to the river bank and follow the lower path until you come to a large meadow, which is the Warren. The beach is in front of the Net House (pictured). On the way back you can take the right off the Wye Valley path (just after a small cottage on the riverside accessible only on foot), under an old railway bridge, and follow that up and it will bring you out beside St Mary’s Church in Hay.
The breakfast basket (delivered to the B&B room the night before, so you can wake up when you like) is always slightly different, but as long as Alex Gooch – one of Hay’s fabulous artisanal bakers – has freshly baked spiced buns, they’re in the basket. Usual fare also includes: locally made yoghurt, granola, fresh berries and fruit, Herefordshire single variety apple juice. Healthy, wholesome, and locally sourced.
The Festoon moveable feast celebrates its first anniversary this month. To celebrate a year of fun and frolicks at Chanstone Farm and to welcome in a new season, they’re having a Winter Feast on the 22nd and 23rd of November.
We’re away that weekend, sadly, but I’m offering a special price on the B&B that weekend – £100 for two nights for just the room so you’d have to bring your own breakfast (there’s a fridge, toaster, cafetiere, Hay Deli blend coffee, teas, a couple of pints of milk, plates, bowls cutlery, glasses etc). Or you could head down the road to The River Cafe and have a full English or freshly baked croissants and coffee, overlooking the River Wye.
Places limited and booking up fast for Festoon, so if you would like to go, drop them a line asap! To take up the special offer at Pottery Cottage, drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org or call me on 07879 373431.
Lots more info and photos on the website: http://festoonproductions.com/
…or more specifically, on the River Wye between Glasbury and Hay-on-Wye!
This short film was produced by Wye Valley Canoes, home to The River Cafe, which many of our guests have enjoyed, and filmed by Michael Sinclair who took the photos of Pottery Cottage. It perfectly captures that stretch of the River Wye, which is just a short walk away from the B&B through the fields. Don’t be put off by late autumn/early winter weather, it’s beautiful all year round.