The Old Shippen, Kerswell Farm

Bideford, Devon

A sunny cottage for comfort and country-lovers with caring hosts, acres of wildlife-rich meadows, woodland and lakes – close to the coast


3 beds


2 bedrooms


Sleeps 4


Bird-watchers, walkers, star-gazers and downright lazers will surely love this smartly, characterfully converted cowshed down narrow Devon lanes. You’ve your own lawned and shrubbed garden to unwind in. For a coastal stomp the nearby stretch of the South West Coast Path is one of the most dramatic; porpoises come in close to Clovelly harbour.The Shippen’s living space is upstairs, making the most of great views. You can’t see another building, though your hosts live in the farmhouse, and Elaine can prepare evening meals for you using the best local food. They leave a generous welcome pack, and can tell you about good places to eat out; they’re seriously dog-friendly too – there’s even a warm dog shower.Come as a larger group and take the other self-catering conversion – The Old Piggery – as well. There’s plenty of space for everyone – beyond the private garden there are 20 acres to explore with two lakes, two ponds, a broadleaf plantation, some rare culm grassland and woodland – and the owners have prepared a trail map with footpaths marked to help you. Keep an eye out for owls and bats.  

The Old Shippen, Kerswell Farm - Gallery

We think you'll love

  • The remote, tranquil feel of Kerswell Farm
  • Curling up on the tweedy sofa by the wood-burner
  • Quiet walks around the farm yet having lots to do within easy distance
The Old Shippen, Kerswell Farm - Gallery

You should know

  • The local Parkham pub – though only 1.5 miles away – isn’t an easy walk
  • Not for children, nor those with limited mobility
  • Approach roads are narrow and winding


  • Swimming pool
  • Hot tub
  • Garden
  • Open fire / woodburner
  • Breakfast included
  • Breakfast available
  • Meals available
  • Oven
  • Parking on premises
  • Free parking nearby
  • Accessible by public transport
  • WiFi
  • Television
  • Central heating
  • Limited mobility
  • Wheelchair access
  • Mobile reception
  • Hob
  • Barbecue
  • Vegetarian meals
  • Paid parking nearby
  • Air conditioning
  • Relaxation areas
  • Washing machine
  • Tennis court
  • Microwave oven
  • No smoking
  • Credit cards
  • Working farm
  • Owner has pets
  • Electricity included
  • Dishwasher
  • Pets welcome

Family friendly

  • Baby monitor
  • Books and toys
  • Children welcome
  • Babies welcome
  • Stair gates
  • High chair
  • Cot available


  • Pub/bar within 3 miles
  • Restaurant within 3 miles
  • Shop within 3 miles


  • Bikes available
  • Food courses
  • Kayaking
  • Other courses
  • Sailing
  • Surfing
  • Wild swimming

& pricing

Booking information

Check in
From 3pm
Check out
By 10am
Booking restrictions
Minimum stay: 3 nights.
No smoking
Smoking not permitted anywhere in the property.
Owner has pets
Animals living on the property
Dinner, 2 courses, £15.


Nightly price
from £80
Weekly price
from £563
1 House for 4
From £803 beds2 bedrooms


I can't recommend this place highly enough. The care and attention to detail from Elaine and Adrian is mindblowing. The kitchen was the best equipped we've ever had in a self-catering stay and everything throughout was spotlessly clean. Elaine and Adrian are warm, welcoming and fascinating to chat with - and Ralph the lurcher is just gorgeous. We arrived to fresh scones with cream and jam - a perfect accompaniment for the fruit cake I'd ordered! Lots to see a short drive away, when you can drag yourselves away from the tranquil farm location. We'll be going back.

Sharon, London

A beautifully furnished cottage. Elaine and Adrian are brilliant hosts. The highpoint was Elaine‘s wonderful cooking. We had three meals prepared for us while we were staying there. This was on top of arriving to scones and cream home-made bread and home-made cake . Nothing seemed to be too much trouble. It’s fortunate there are some stunning coastal walks to work off some of the good food. We were thoroughly spoilt and had a wonderful break. We would highly recommend. Amazing!

Harry, Oxfordshire

A superb place. We (couple & dog) had a truly wonderful week in the Old Shippen. Elaine and Adrian couldn’t have been better hosts. The cottage is delightful, peaceful and furnished to a very high standard all over. The location is unique, and a sun trap even in winter. Nearby are loads of stunning walks and beaches/coastal paths, and plenty of good pubs. Elaine’s cooking is both generous and excellent - we enjoyed four tremendous suppers of hers, really a special treat indeed. Everything that one would hope for from a Sawday’s cottage, and of the ten or so that we’ve enjoyed so far, No1.

Mark, Andover

Such a lovely, peaceful setting. The cottage is beautifully done yet cosy and homely. Ideal for our 4 legged friends and lots of great walks. Elaine and Adrian are such friendly hosts and Elaine is a great cook. We hope to return soon.

Clare, Somerset

Very comfortable and beautifully furnished accommodation in a peaceful rural setting. There is nothing bland or standard; every room has character and unique features and reflects the owners' attention to detail and wish for their guests to feel relaxed and enjoy their stay. The ideal place to unwind!

Heather, Sawday's inspector

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The neighbourhood

In green Devon folds, Kerswell Farm is all about hospitality and conservation. 20 peaceful, sustainably managed acres of woodland, meadows and lakes are yours to roam. It’s 2.5 miles to the SW Coast Path with wildly craggy and sandy stretches like Northam and Sandymouth; steeply cobbled Clovelly is 6 miles. Garden fans have RHS Rosemoor, Marwood Hill and Tapeley Park within 40 minutes’ drive. Smart pub food at The Farmers Arms, Woolsery: 2 miles.

Local points of interest from Elaine & Adrian Arnold

  • Explore the 20 beautiful acres at Kerswell Farm. Lakes, woodland, culm meadow and a big field for letting dogs run free. The lakes are so peaceful and the wildlife is amazing! Just sit, enjoy the dragonflies over the waterlilies and feel yourself unwind.
  • The variety and numbers of birds around the land is astonishing - every type of tit imaginable, finches galore, woodpeckers, waterfowl, jays and of course our resident owls never fail to entertain. Plenty of good spots to watch from.
  • Some of the very best North Devon beaches are close by; spectacular Bucks Mills, Sandymouth, Welcombe Mouth, Northam Burrows and Peppercombe to name just a few. Fabulous for walks, surfing, windsurfing, kitesurfing, beachcombing and rock-pooling!
  • Quaint Clovelly is just 10 minutes away with its steep cobbled streets leading down to the ancient harbour. Festivals like crab and lobster and herring are regularly held and it's a great place to spend a day. Visit the walled garden at Clovelly Court too.
  • Spectacular gardens abound in the area, RHS Rosemoor, Docton Mill, Hartland Abbey and Marwood Hill gardens are all wonderful and full of ideas to inspire you. Discover the great variety of local cafes and pubs along the way for a sustaining break!
  • The skies here are truly dark, and stargazing is a real treat on a clear night. Lie back with a blanket and a warming drink and just marvel at what is above you (so romantic). Use our binoculars to bring the stars and moon even closer…


Elaine & Adrian Arnold

Exchanging globetrotting careers in medical industries to follow their passion for rural living and conservation, the Arnolds chose Kerswell Farm as their home, and project. They’ve carefully converted two, totally independent, detached farm buildings, The Old Piggery and The Old Shippen (cowshed) for guests to take a coastal countryside break. Very much part of the community, they are a great source of local info. And Elaine’s an excellent cook.