facebook flickr twitter instagram

Blog

Tuesday, 22 August 2017 16:51

Hosting events at Dunfield House

Written by

Finding a venue able to fulfil the needs for your event is only the beginning of the long winding journey, but don’t be fazed; nothing else can beat the feeling of success, putting your feet up after the event has finished, no matter how smoothly it may or may not have gone – all the challenges on the way will be worth it!

 

Dunfield House is the home to a bounty of events from Yoga retreats to school residentials. If you’re looking to expand, we could offer you the facilities to take your event to the next level. If you’re a first timer we have the expertise to advise, consult and encourage your event to flourish and become the talking point for months after.

 

Perhaps you have a well-established event that’s looking for a new venue; Dunfield House would be able to help you out with our Year-on-Year booking*, meaning if you book with us, you are offered the same dates (or very close to those dates – especially around bank holidays) the following year. This service takes a whole lot of stress out of securing a venue for your next occasion!

 

Having accommodation and catering services available here is a weight off most shoulders when juggling an event plan. It can also allow yourself to broaden your audience; people may be willing to travel if they have a place to stay locally, and you can’t be more local than on the premises! Filling your guests time wouldn’t be a worry either, with great local walks, a swimming pool, and a huge handful of activity space to keep them keen in-between your structured sessions.

 

If you are looking for a venue for the day, Dunfield House shouldn’t be ruled out! Between November to March we can offer one-day events to include catering if you wish. We have areas ideal for talks, workshops and activities; please don’t hesitate to get in contact to find out more about ‘day event’ opportunities.

 

To find out more about what we have to offer, expanding an event, or have any questions about Dunfield House, email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

 

 

*Year-on-Year booking – To find out more information and terms for our ‘Year-on-Year’ booking opportunity feel free to get in touch. 

We have had two great volunteers here this Summer, Nick and Korinne! When having the chance to do so, Korinne has been sharing her story through her blog. It's worth keeping an eye on this for new stories, and definitely worth a read! - https://morethanatouristblog.wordpress.com/ 

Below is her comprehensive ranking of Dunfield puddings! I had to share it on here because I think it's great!! however I would like to add, Dunfield's cookies should definitely reached top #3!!! 


 

If you have ever spent time at Dunfield House, you know that mealtime is an integral part of every day. Everyone has their favourite meals, but more important are the pudding. (And by pudding I mean dessert). When I first got to Dunfield, I was enthralled by the various sweet treats at the end of each meal and since then I have developed an opinion about the best of the best puddings. For your benefit and enjoyment I have decided to share my rankings with you.

#10 – Arctic Roll

While these ice cream treats are a favourite of kids that come to visit Dunfield, there’s just something about the cake roll part of it that I personally don’t love. On a hot day (lol) they would probably be nice!

#9 – Chocolate Chip Cookies

Don’t get me wrong, chocolate chip cookies are one of my favourite treats, but with all the other amazing options, it gets stuck in the #9 spot!

#8 – Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Sauce

I know, I know, there might be a riot that this pudding is so far down my list. But, what can I say? *Shrugs Shoulders*

#7 – Jam Sponge and Custard

Jam sponge and custard is a pudding that has really grown on me since I have been at Dunfield House. Coming from the land of corn syrup (America), jam sponge and custard seemed super bland. However, my taste buds have adapted and now this British delicacy is climbing the ranks of my favourites.

#6 – Apple Crumble (and custard)

I am all for anything with crumble and custard being mixed – that’s all I have to say. The apple part is just a bonus.

#5 – Chocolate Brownie and Ice Cream

The Dunfield House brownies are some of the best in the world and you can quote me on that. That’s all there is to be said.

#4 – Lemon Cheesecake

I have only had the lemon cheesecake a few times, but it earned the #4 spot fairly quickly. There’s nothing like the crisp flavour of lemon in the summer months.

#3 – Banoffee Pie

Anyone that has had the sweet toffee and banana pudding cannot dispute the bronze medal being awarded to Banoffee Pie. (Unless they think it should be higher on the list.)

#2 – Flapjacks

I anticipate a lot of push back on the decision to award flapjacks the #2 spot. For many, they aren’t necessarily considered pudding. But, when the oaty, sweet goodness of the flapjack is put in front of me, I just can’t resist.

AAANNNNNNDDDDD

#1 – Sticky Toffee Pudding

Sticky toffee pudding is amazing in many ways, but it’s truly the toffee sauce that is poured on top that puts this dessert way out of the league of any of the others. Honestly, STICKY TOFFEE PUDDING WILL ALWAYS BE THE BEST DUNFIELD PUDDING AND I REFUSE TO HEAR ANY ARGUMENTS ABOUT IT.

Thank you for taking your time to read this ranking of my favourite Dunfield Puddings. Stick around to soon read about my favourite U.K. chocolate and also more important things like talking about Summer Camp and Primitive Camp!

Please feel free to leave comments and discuss with me my rankings unless you’re going to suggest that sticky toffee pudding shouldn’t be #1.

 

 

Friday, 07 July 2017 12:28

We even accommodate the prickly!

Written by

Last week we were lucky enough to host a school of explorers. Whilst walking the stream below our campfire a little hoglet was spotted. The poor prickly didn’t seem to be enjoying the stream as much as the guests, so they called for help! Their teacher arrived with a small box, and tissues to keep the hog warm and dry. As recommended by our vet we had a quick trip down to the practice to leave the hoglet in expert hands and on the road to recovery. 

 

After the lucky find it came to us that we must have other hedgehogs nearby and perhaps we could help them out too. So we put a bit of food out for them in our garden, not expecting to spot anything straight away but it seemed to be just what they needed! A few hours passed until we spotted some hedgehog’s hoovering up the food and potter on their way to find their next grub.

 

Our natural surroundings provide a lot of habitat for hedgehogs to thrive. We don’t use pesticides on the grounds either. We’re not too keen on slugs but the hedgehogs love them, so the more we can provide for them the happier they can be!

 

So on your next visit to Dunfield keep your eyes peeled, you might meet some of our locals! 

 

Dating back to around 1850, Dunfield House, as it stands today is rich with history. While the history of Dunfield certainly plays a role in how we see and experience Dunfield today, it is not the only influence in making this place so special.

More than the house itself, more than the surrounding acreage and more than what meets the eye - it’s the memories made here and the effect that this place has had on people that truly makes Dunfield brilliant.

We think it is important to share these stories and allow others to see what Dunfield House truly is and what it means to people. 

We have chosen to begin a project on the Dunfield House Instagram, Facebook & Twitter pages titled #StoriesOfDunfield

While regular posting will continue, you may frequently see posts tagged with #StoriesOfDunfield indicating it is part of this particular project. 

Through this campaign, you will be able to see a collection of stories and thoughts worth sharing from those who visit Dunfield House.

Our aim is to show everyone ‘how good the world can be’ through the eyes of those who make Dunfield House what it is - the people! Please join us on this great new adventure and check back soon to see our first #StoriesOfDunfield post!



Tuesday, 20 June 2017 15:10

Catching up with Nic, the Chef!

Written by

It’s a secret recipe that makes Dunfield house stand out from the rest. Much like any good recipe; if there’s something missing, the taste is there but it’s just not quite the same. It goes without saying that the staff at Dunfield are our staple ingredient.

With this in mind it made me feel humbled to work with the Dunfield bunch.

So notebook in hand and questions on the mind, I scouted out our Head Chef, Nic to find out a bit more about her life in and out of Dunfield.

Perhaps moseying into the kitchen mid-way through her prep time, pouring a coffee and urge to know if she’d rather have Hulk hands or super human speed could be the least subtle approach to “an informal interview I can use for marketing content” as pitched to my manager, but these are the questions we need answering, am I right?

And here’s what I found out…

Q. Would you rather have Hulk hands or superhuman speed?

Superhuman speed! I would just get everything done much quicker; doing 100 things at once would be great… Hulk hands wouldn’t be very useful in the kitchen either.

Q. As a chef, what’s your favourite thing about working here at Dunfield?

There’s so much variety here from adult groups to primary schools, meaning changing up the menu to suit the guests for each group which keeps me on my toes. Making sure all dietary requirements are met is rewarding. There’s a good balance here.

Q. When not at Dunfield, where would we most likely find you/ what would you most likely be doing?

Trying new restaurants, pubs and foods in the local area. I also love exploring the local countryside, my ‘go to’ place at the moment is Bodenham lake. There are lots of walks around the area I love and many more to explore.

Q. What’s the TV series that you always fall back on when you have a spare half an hour?

I’m a fan of Come Dine With Me. I wouldn’t mind going on there one day! I would cook up chicken, bacon and mushroom with a white wine sauce. Bound to be a winner!

Q. What’s your favourite single/ album?

I quite like belting out Scared to Be Lonely - Martin Garrix & Dua Lipa at the moment. But as for classics, I like Savage Garden!

Q. It would seem silly not asking you what your favourite thing to cook is…

I love cooking Risotto. There’s just so much you can do to it; I like meals that you can chop and change but still have the basis there.

Q. And to eat?

A BURGER! It has to have cheese, bacon and a bit of mayo in a little brioche. Can’t beat it!

Q. If you could meet anybody (Dead or alive) who would you choose?

Freddie Mercury, he had such an interesting, creative life!

 

There’s never a dull moment at Dunfield house with more exciting times for us on the horizon. Our kitchen team is growing and we’re looking for the perfect candidate for the role.

So if you’re a creative cook looking for a change, this could be the job for you. We are a well-established, passionate business with team work at its core.

Offering flexible catering hours and relevant training; previous experience or qualifications in catering are desirable but we will also consider training or apprenticeships. So if you feel as if working with Nic and the team sounds like the job for you, get in touch!

 

Please don’t hesitate to email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for more information or call us on 01544 230 563 for a chat.  

 

Wednesday, 07 June 2017 14:37

The Biomass’ Birthday!

Written by

Party poppers and paper hats poised… It’s been 3 years since the arrival of our Biomass Boiler, where has the time gone?! It didn’t take us that long to get to grips with it; reducing our heating’s carbon footprint by 90% whilst still warming the whole house, Stables, swimming pool and cottage on site. It’s been a huge step forward for us with no intention of going back!

Our ethos at Dunfield house is to keep change to a minimum; I mean what’s the point of fixing something that’s not broken? This principle is used by many and seems as old as the sun, which could explain why others might not be as invested in renewable energy yet, but we have no obligation to keeping the old when it comes to energy.

Our biomass boiler burns wood. Not your usual logs though; it’s finely cut up, dried and fed through a press to create the pellets. It’s very effective; once the moisture is out of the wood it can burn much hotter in smaller quantities.

Wood’s renewable and when burned, the carbon dioxide is taken back in by the surrounding plants and trees. Win-win!

At Dunfield we’ve been able to save on the amount of deliveries we have too. The Biomass Lorries visit us about every season, this is less than half the amount of deliveries we had whilst oil guzzlers!

 All in all, the biddable boiler’s welcomed by us all at Dunfield! If you’re interested in renewable energy, fancy hearing more about our setup or perhaps a renewable energy expert, leave a comment or email us for more info. We’re always looking for new ways to reduce our carbon footprint and would love to hear your tips too!

 

  

We are lucky enough to have Dunfield house and grounds on our doorstep and although being here most days, the grounds have plenty of exploring left to do.

However the opportunity for explorers can go beyond the hills that hide us. So we’ll share some of our favorite spots around the local area!

First on the list, perhaps the most obvious is Hergest Ridge- Offas Dyke path! We get to enjoy a glance at it every day and it doesn’t seem to get old, despite its known history dating back to AD 757. This is only less than ten minutes away by car; you’ll have a great view of it from the house too!

Water-Break-It’s-Neck is just another short car journey away. Past the village of New Radnor, hidden in the Warren wood, you’ll find the waterfall that all the locals refer to! If you are up to explore, you might end up finding ‘The Secret Waterfall’, closer to the source of the stream. There are a few short walks around the area all based from the main carpark. We recommend wellies!

Elan Valley is one of my favorites. Not far out of the town of Rhayader you will come across a large reservoir, it looks like a huge lake but it actually provides most of the water for the city of Birmingham! You are able to walk around the whole reservoir and if you pick a day when the sun is shining, it is difficult to find a more peaceful place, apart from Dunfield… obviously!

Bradnor hill wouldn’t be one to miss either; and if you have the chance to stay at Dunfield, it would be quite difficult to do so. With a two minute walk from the house you can find yourself at the bottom of the hill. The view looking up is nearly as impressive as from at the top. Be light on your toes when you reach the peak though as you will stumble on to the 9th hole of Kington Golf course, you might have to dodge a ball or so!

 

Our list will end there. Although we have plenty of other top spots we love equally, this should be enough to keep you busy for a day or many! 

Friday, 12 May 2017 09:06

How Good the World can Bee!

Written by

Just half a minute to take in the view of Hergest Ridge and the wildflowers sitting above the stream is all it takes to set me up for the day. It’s easy to appreciate the people around us, the staff and guests who look after the grounds for others to enjoy; but sometimes the humble bumble can be overlooked. After all, a lot of what we enjoy wouldn’t be here without the bumblebee!

So here’s a brief list of what we do to look after them…

1.      Go easy on the wildflowers

Dunfield’s ground has been worked on over the years for all of us to enjoy. We have planted, weeded and raked the grounds for as long as we can remember. Although a lot of the wildflowers have tiptoed in themselves, we are more than welcome for them to stay. Bees love them, therefore we do too! Visit Bumble Bees conservation’s guide to see what makes a good garden for bees!

2.      We all need to drink, right?

We have more in common with bees than you might have first thought. Bumblebees need to keep hydrated too. We are lucky enough to have a stream running through the grounds for them to quench their thirst and energize their buzz, but they’ll be just as grateful for a small bowl of water too.

It is becoming more common to find dozy bees; it could be that they need a little pick me up. When we might enjoy a coffee, bees prefer a drop of water and a teaspoon of sugar according to RSPB. We have done this a few times and it seems to do the trick!

 

3.      We provide a shelter for all

We have group accommodation for big and small… the smallest being about 2cm! Our guest bees are welcome to take residence in our insect hotel, with penthouse options available. This is placed in a shaded area, perfect for bees to take a well-deserved rest, or set up for the summer. Perhaps you could make your own?

4.      Keeping it natural

We don’t use pesticides at Dunfield. If anything is getting a bit overgrown, a quick trim doesn’t go amiss! If you feel pesticides are your only option, without getting too technical, neonicotinoids are the ones to steer clear of. The plants suck up all the chemicals which can be deadly to the insects snacking on the pollen- sadly these include bees.

Hopefully you found our list helpful, giving you a few ideas that you could use in your own garden. If you have any tips of your own we would love to hear them, so please leave any comments below!