Moorland View Cottage is owned and run by Suzy Bennett, a food and travel journalist and photographer based in nearby Moretonhampstead, Dartmoor, Devon.
Suzy is The Telegraph’s Devon travel expert and has written several guides to the county, so is the perfect person to help with travel arrangements.
Suzy bought Moorland View in 2007 as a run-down cottage in dire need of TLC. An old farm labourer’s cottage dating from 1705, it had had a paper-thin thatched roof, infestation of woodworm and severe damp problem. Suzy commissioned a raft of local traditional artisans including blacksmiths and thatchers to restore the 300-year heritage of the Grade II-listed building, before launching it as a luxury holiday cottage in 2009.
It was while commissioning for the renovation that Suzy realised some of the UK’s most talented artisans live on her doorstep, a discovery which prompted her to go on to spend a year photographing them at work. Her portraits formed two solo summer exhibitions and inspired her to launch the Dartmoor Artisan Trail, an art, craft and food trail that links Dartmoor’s finest craftspeople and producers.
You’ll find many Dartmoor artisans’ products in Moorland View, including hand-whittled wooden spoons, decorative ironwork forged by the village blacksmith, baskets, rugs, pottery, chopping boards and textiles. There are several quirky pieces on display too, which Suzy gathered from local farming friends, including a pair of sheep-shearer’s moccasins, a bee-keeper’s smoker, a milking stool (the coffee table), and a fruit picker’s ladder that serves as a characterful towel rail. There’s also an interesting display of historical postcards written from North Bovey, along with intriguing finds that were discovered under the floorboards and between walls during the cottage’s refurbishment.