A new lifestyle store has opened in Charnwood Forest, Leicestershire, selling home textiles, jewelry, clothing and fashion accessories, as well as food and drink.
The Lifestyle Barn took advantage of the end of the lockdown to start at Bawdon Lodge Farm in Nanpantan, a few miles south of Loughborough.
Much of the products on offer are locally sourced, such as Burleigh’s gin, which is distilled on the farm, botanical bee honey, Nenette chocolates, Driver’s Pickles and John Bradley Jams, as well as items from Katherine Sheard Art, Ralph and Rose baby accessories and Lemonybird greeting cards.
There are also items from other parts of the UK, all from independent companies, including Fitzpatricks Liquors, Williams Handbaked, Morgan Wright, Jungle Culture, Nouri and Cocoba.
The shop is opened by Lynn Bailey from Bawdon Lodge Farm together with Jules Baines from Just Jules Jewelery.
The farm has been an outdoor and barn wedding and events venue since 2012.
Before Covid, it held its own popular craft fairs.
Lynn says there is planning permission in place to convert the farm’s large grain barn into a cafe, lifestyle store, and smaller retail stores for local craft businesses. However, the pandemic resulted in the proceedings being suspended.
Lynn and Jules wanted to organize a Covid-safe pop-up shop in December 2020 to support and showcase local artisans and creatives and to develop the Bawdon Lodge Farm brand.
So successful was it that the duo decided to take the shopping experience to the next level and move into one of the farm’s larger barns.
According to Lynn, her goal is to create a friendly shopping environment that is accessible to the local community and supports local businesses.
The lifestyle barn is open Tuesday to Saturday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. It is closed on Mondays, excluding public holidays.
The farm is also open for forest walks. Customers can purchase take-away drinks and use the outdoor seating area.
Outdoor weddings are possible, and plans to remodel the large grain barn are pending.
A number of farm events are also scheduled to take place this year, including craft fairs, charity events, and open-air theater in partnership with local theater groups.