Most people think about doing things differently to kick off a New Year, however we haven’t waited until then.

We’re so grateful to Dan Cook Carpentry & Building Limited and his plumbing, electrical and decorating partners for sharing our vision of making The Cottages at Blackadon Farm one of the best places for people to stay in Devon. It’s been a huge challenge in the four weeks before Christmas.

Today, we reopened for Christmas with all the small cottages refurbished from top to toe. The reaction from guests has been more than we could have wished for. All the hard work of the contractors and our cleaning staff has paid off. We hope our guests are going to love this magical place.

Dan and his team will be coming back in January to get our Group accommodation up to the same, fantastic standard. We’re looking forward to seeing them after their well deserved break.

With Christmas in mind, here’s a tribute to the building team that’s done an amazing job for us. It’s a twist on ‘Twas The Night Before Christmas, although not so poetic!

‘Twas the night before Christmas, not a builder was stirring, not even a drill

The stockings were hung by the guests with care, with hope that new bathrooms and kitchens soon would be there

The guests were nestled all snug in new beds while visions of Dartmoor Ponies danced in their heads

The moon on the breasts of the new fallen cottages gave the lustre of mid-day objects below

When what to my wondering eyes should appear? But a miniature skip and nine tiny reindeer with a lively old driver so lively and quick – I knew in a moment it must be Saint Dan

Now Ian, go Bill, James and Tyler, and Jordan, Dean, Dan, Connor and Kyle. Now dash away, dash away, dash away all

And then in a twinkle, I heard on the roof the prancing and pawing of plumbers (Jamie, Jack and Brandon), electricians (Steve and Sam) and decorators (Mike and Matt)

They were dressed in dungerees from their heads to their feet, with clothes all tarnished with dust and paint

The Blackadon Farm clients had broad faces and little round bellies that shook like little round jellies

Dan’s crew spoke not a word having done all their work and giving a nod, up the chimney Dan rose

He sprang to his skip, to his team gave a whistle and away they all flew away like the down of a thistle, but I heard him exclaim as he drove out of sight “Merry Christmas to Blackadon and to all a good night”.