The Long Hill Carriage Story
It all started when...
Annie and Chris, who have lived in the small hilltop village of Cucklington for over 25 years, decided that their garden was missing something. That something turned out to be rather different...
In 2003, Annie heard from her brother - an avid railway enthusiast - that a rather unique Victorian railway carriage was heading for the bonfire. Up until that point, the carriage - which had started its career in 1882 as a 'birdcage' third class carriage on the Lancashire & Yorkshire Railway before finishing up on the Barry Railway (which became the Great Western Railway) in South Wales in 1927 - had been used as accommodation on a farm in North Devon, where it had been the core of a bungalow.
Annie and Chris spent the next three years - along with the expertise of a master craftsman - renovating the carriage, retaining the majority of both the woodwork and fittings of the original, whilst updating it sympathetically and with Annie's characteristic style. For the next few years, the renovated carriage was used as a summer house and home office for Chris.
After sharing the carriage with family and friends for a number of years, Annie and Chris decided that they wanted to share this unique and stylish piece of history with others. They thought the best way to do this would be through a holiday let. However, in order to do this, a separate bedroom and bathroom were needed.
It turned out the solution to this was none other than a 1952 Western Region goods wagon, found on eBay, where it was being sold by an archery club in Stratford-Upon-Avon. This was then trucked to Cucklington, where the road was closed whilst it was lifted over the hedge into the garden. Work then commenced on transforming it into a luxurious double bedroom with en=suite bathroom and balcony, situated within its own private garden, with stunning views over the valley of the Blackmore Vale.
Together, these two pieces of British railway history make a quirky and comfortable base for a restful and tranquil escape from the pressures of modern life. We hope that staying in such a special railway carriage and wagon, both now in their third renicarnation, will be a unique, fun, relaxing and unforgettable experience.