“A country-luxe hideaway with stylish bedrooms, amazing breakfasts and a warm welcome”
At the helm are Lee Jay and Amanda, who spent years searching for the perfect base for their boutique accommodation. They fell in love with this place at first sight and the results of their renovation are spectacular. In the guest bedrooms, original rustic features such as exposed beams and hay lofts now combine smoothly with mod cons like underfloor heating, Nespresso machines and smart TVs. On the ground floor a guest lounge is exquisitely furnished with pale grey Chesterfield sofas and floor-to-ceiling windows with dreamy views. You’ll eat breakfast here in the mornings (homemade granola; perfectly poached eggs on avocado), and in the evenings, the stylish log-burner is lit so you can cosy up with drinks from the honesty bar. Best of all, Lee Jay and Amanda’s nothing-is-too-much-trouble attitude pervades everything about this place. Informal luxury at its finest.
- An original 19th-century dairy barn renovated into sumptuous, cosy digs - book for a B&B stay or as a whole barn exclusive rental
- Set in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty - the views along nearby walking trails are nothing short of spectacular
- Fabulous breakfasts: fresh, packed-with-flavour local produce perfectly cooked by Amanda, a former Masterchef quarter-finalist
- Just a handful of pampering rooms with White Company linens, Cowshed toiletries, Smart TVs and the comfiest beds around
- Adults only (unless you book the whole house), so it’s all about peace and relaxation
- Closed Monday-Wednesday every week and full pre-payment upon reservation
- No other meals served and no eateries within easy walking distance, but Amanda can book you taxis to excellent restaurants
- You’ll likely want a car to get here and explore the area (although you could come by train and taxi around)
- The owners have a fluffy cat called Wandsworth. We adored him, but he won’t suit those with allergies
Best time to go
- Boutique B&B or Exclusive Rental
- Breakfast only (restaurants nearby)
- Occasionally allowed
- Open all year
- Spa Treatments
- Pet Friendly
- Disabled Access
- Beach Nearby
- Off-street Parking
- Restaurants Nearby
- Air Conditioning
- Guest Lounge
- Daily Maid Service
- Towels & Bedlinen
- Honesty bar
The 4 bedrooms combine old and new beautifully: high ceilings, whitewashed exposed beams, cast-iron radiators and rustic-chic wardrobes. Mattresses are superb, duvets are divine, and the sheets, towels and dressing gowns are from The White Company (and it doesn’t get better than that). In homage to the building's history, there's a quirky cow painting in each room.
Bathrooms are stylish, too, with underfloor heating, Cowshed products (the cow theme continues), powerful rain showers and exquisite monochrome Moroccan tiles.
We stayed in the Hill View Bath Suite, which has a gorgeous freestanding in-room tub and beautiful views - across the valley to the hills beyond, and over a neighbouring vineyard. This is the only room with a balcony, and it gets lots of afternoon sun; a super-special spot for a sundowner.
The Hill View Shower Suite is smaller (without a tub), but just as luxurious, with a Smart TV and Nespresso. When we stayed, the owners were living in the Garden View Suite, but this airy double-height bedroom has glorious garden views, as well as the option of pairing with an additional bedroom to create the Garden View Family Suite.
- Central heating
- Coffee / tea making
Dragging yourself out of the cloud-like beds is tough, but definitely worth the effort. Amanda was a Masterchef quarter-finalist and our breakfast was superb, starting with homemade granola with passionfruit coulis and coconut yoghurt. The cooked menu is all about stunning local produce; provenance is paramount here and Amanda can pretty much tell you the exact farm your thick-cut bacon, sausages or eggs come from! Even the bread is baked nearby. Our 'Full Bull' was completely delicious, as were the local Burford eggs with smoked salmon. Coffee comes (of course) from a nearby roaster and juices are freshly squeezed.
For other meals, Lee Jay has a wealth of restaurant suggestions, depending on your mood and budget. The Nest in Ledbury has an array of yummy scotch eggs from The Handmade Scotch Eggs Company, while The Butchers Arms in Eldersfield has a Michelin star. We taxi-d 15 minutes to The Swan at Hanley Swan, an award-winning Worcestershire gastro pub, where we ate amazing smoked haddock, mussel kedgeree and wild mushroom Wellington.
For pre- or post-dinner drinks, there’s an honesty bar in the guest lounge.
- Coffee / tea making
- Organic produce
- The dramatic landscape of the Malvern Hills is literally on your doorstep, while the Cotswolds and Wye Valley are only a short drive away. The area is popular with walkers of all levels; there’s a lovely circular 3.5-mile walk from the barn to get you started
- Bring bikes: the area is fantastic for road cycling and mountain biking. There are a number of local sportives
- Visit charming historic towns and villages. Ledbury (a former market town with authentic timber-frame houses), Great Malvern (a spectacular priory and independent boutiques) and Hay-on-Wye (brilliant second-hand bookshops) are our favourites
- This part of the country is awash with local producers from the 3 counties. Food-wise, ask Lee Jay and Amanda for the best farmers' markets. Drinks-wise, Weston’s cider museum is 20 minutes away, and don’t miss the excellent Three Choirs Vineyard for award-winning English wines and fizz
- Eastnor Castle, a 19th-century revival castle, is 5 miles away. On a sunny day, wander its beautiful grounds (don’t miss the arboretum) and the Knight’s Maze. There are frequent events held here (vintage steam trains, a chilli festival, gigs, concerts etc)
Activities on site or nearby include:
- Historical sites
- Horse riding
- Mountain biking
- Museums / galleries
- Shopping / markets
- Well being
- Wine tasting
Ages 8+ only, unless you're making a whole-house booking.
Family friendly accommodation:
The Garden View Suite can be expanded to include an additional double bedroom, creating a two-bedroom family suite with one bathroom. Children under 8 are only allowed if you are booking the exclusive use of the entire property.
Baby cot, on request
Remember baby and child equipment may be limited or need pre-booking
The Bull Shed is 1 mile from the village of Colwall, in Herefordshire. It's on the border of Worcestershire, on the western side of the Malverns, and 35 minutes' drive from Worcester itself.
Birmingham Airport is the closest (48 miles / 78km away). Or fly into Bristol (65 miles / 104km) or London Heathrow (119 miles / 192km). Click on the links below for a list of airlines.
You'll probably want a car to get here and to explore the area. The drive from London takes 2 to 3 hours, via the M4, M5 and local roads; from Birmingham and Bristol it's around 1.5 hours. If you want to hire a car, see our car rental recommendations. There's free parking on-site.
If you don't drive, there's a train station at Colwall with direct trains to London (2.5 hours), Birmingham (1 hour) and Oxford (1.5 hours). Taxis await at the station.
Detailed directions will be sent to you when you book through i-escape.com.
More on getting to the UK and getting around
- Birmingham 78.0 km BHX
- Bristol 104.0 km BRS
- Beach 93.0 km
- Shops 1.4 km
- Restaurant 1.4 km