Sleep in a converted silo for a romantic getaway in the Shropshire countryside

Kate Humble explores the world of rural businesses

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Located in the shadow of the Brown Clee, the highest hill in Shropshire, Abdon Ramblers Retreat Ltd. has been welcoming guests for the last four years. Still retaining its classic features on the outside, the round storage unit has been converted into a two-floor living space, with a spiral staircase to access the upstairs bedroom and bathroom.

Those after a long-term stay are more than welcome to call the silo their temporary home, with well-behaved dogs also allowed to join.

Flip flops are must-haves in your suitcase if you plan to use the outdoor hot tub in the private garden just outside the unique accommodation.

Other amenities guests have access to include a TV, oven, WiFi, an indoor fireplace, while you watch an intimate sunset over the rolling hills.

Run by AirBnb superhost Nicola and her partner Graham, the couple created the retreat for those wanting to get away from the hustle and bustle of everyday living.

Speaking about how they came across the abandoned land, Nicola said: “We purchased The Red Barn in May 2014 which was a derelict barn and byre which at the time still had farm animals living in it.

“We decided to move into Shropshire after my partner sold his engineering business and I had treatment for breast cancer. Over the next 18 months we renovated the buildings into our five bedroom home.

“The Silo was on the land so my partner decided he would convert it into a workshop, to go along with his other man sheds and workshop.

“Once he started I thought it would make a great holiday for walkers to stay, hence the birth of Abdon Ramblers Retreat.”

Holidaygoers can also stay in another room on site named The Loft, a modern apartment that can sleep up to five guests.

All guests will be provided with tea, coffee, fresh free range eggs from the hens and ducks that live on the retreat, with fresh bread and meat products can also be arranged ahead of staying.

Nicola added: “The Silo has been on AirBnb for four years now and we have regular returning guests who love to walk the Shropshire Hills and stay here.

“We decided that we needed to make our home work for us.”

The gamble to create a relaxing, countryside staycation has paid off for the couple, with the Abdon Ramblers Retreat Ltd. currently scoring 4.95 stars out of five on AirBnb.

One guest said: “The perfect getaway from city life. Nicola and Gary were brilliant hosts and were always around if we ever needed anything.

“The jacuzzi was an amazing touch and The Silo was so unique. We would love to visit again soon and can’t recommend it enough!”

Another visitor commented: “Absolutely lovely stay at The Silo. Not what we would usually go for, thoroughly enjoyed the silo – hot tub was great in the extremely hot weather and enjoyed a walk locally too with beautiful views. Great hosts in a great location.”

Another person said: “Quirky accommodation, well laid out, great attention to detail and immaculately clean. My first experience in an AirB&b and certainly not a disappointment. Friendly hosts, lovely location. Everything we could of ever asked for. Would have no hesitation on returning.”

Guests who are interested in a last-minute staycation to this Shropshire haven must note there is no public transport but a taxi service can be arranged.

Visitors can arrange to dine at a pub for Sunday lunch or visit the village of Ditton Priors, just three miles away.

If you prefer leaving the car at home, Nicola and Graham have two electric bikes available for hire for £35.00 a day each, and see the nearby hillforts.

Abdon Ramblers Retreat Ltd’s Silo costs £100 per night, with an additional service fee, September is almost fully booked but there’s time to plan a late autumn break in October.

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