The Goods Shed Showman's Wagon
The Goods Shed Showman’s Wagon, Badlesmere Court, Badlesmere, Kent ME1 30NL
The folks who founded The Goods Shed, one of the South East’s most renowned indoor markets, certainly know a thing or two about breathing life back into old spaces. Since it opened back in 2002, the “draughty old railway goods shed”, as The Guardian once described it, with its high ceiling and “vast Victorian windows” has been the talk of Canterbury town and is now home not only to a famous array of artisan food producers, procurers and proliferators, but also a multi-award winning restaurant. It’s no surprise, then, to learn that their first foray into the world of glamping offers quality and history in equal measure. No surprise, either, that it’s set for similarly great success.
Set around 10 miles from Canterbury, on the edge of the Kent Downs, The Goods Shed Showman’s Wagon is a wonderfully preserved and restored 1930’s travellers dwelling. Inside it still features original gaslight fittings and a log-fuelled range, while the dark wooden finish and patterned windows cement its 30’s era feel. An old-style kettle waits to be boiled on the hot plate, a simple pleasure that invites you to cocoon yourself away for hours here in winter months, while during summer, it’s the gorgeous setting that excites. Apple trees shade the outside water tap, chickens cluck along the edge of the nearby hedgerow and, from your perch sitting in the Wagon doorway, glampers have a beautiful view across the meadow, shared with six grazing Southdown sheep.Poor weather pastimes here are one of the pleasures of this cosy heritage abode. Kicking back on the antique patterned sofa with a good book, stoking the toasty fire or lying in the double bed listing to raindrops on the roof are all a joy, while a drive to Faversham (four miles) reveals a slew of antiques shops you can dip in and out of with Canterbury’s famous cathedral not too far beyond. On fair weather days, punting is one of Canterbury’s great highlights – tours are available as well as hiring your own punt to test your skills – while romping across the local footpaths from the Showman’s Wagon is an easier outdoor option. Directly opposite a small dairy farm, the open, agricultural surroundings offer excellent footpaths and wonderful access to the best of the Kent Downs. It’s a Showman’s dwelling with a doorstep onto the best of Kent and a place where the county’s ‘Garden of England’ title makes total sense.
The Owner SaysThe Good Shed Showman's Wagon is set around 10 miles from Canterbury, on the edge of the Kent Downs. It is a wonderfully preserved and restored 1930’s travellers dwelling. Inside it still features original gaslight fittings and a log-fuelled range, while the dark wooden finish and patterned windows cement its 30’s era feel. An old-style kettle waits to be boiled on the hot plate, a simple pleasure that invites you to cocoon yourself away for hours here in winter months, while during summer, it’s the gorgeous setting that excites. Apple trees shade the outside water tap, chickens cluck along the edge of the nearby hedgerow and, from your perch sitting in the Wagon doorway, glampers have a beautiful view across the meadow, shared with six grazing Southdown sheep.
Everything about my experience in the Showman's Wagon was utterly charming. From the wagon itself, to the stunning surroundings and the lovely host, every aspect was beautiful and I really couldn't recommend it any more. The wagon is the perfect combination of character and functionality. The stove and gas lights make it incredibly cosy, with the added convenience of electricity which somehow doesn't take away from the experience in the slightest. It really is a unique experience, and one I think everyone could do with. I count the days until I can visit again. Thank you.
Utterly lovely. We stayed for one (cold/clear) night and it was absolutely wonderful. The wagon was very well looked after and extremely comfortable, and with the many heaters, fires and blankets on offer, very warm. Ivon was a delightful and helpful host and we are so grateful that he has let us stay in his authentic and self restored wagon. With a shower and loo with hot running water metres away there was very little to fault. We were a few minutes walk from a lovely pub aswell as a few scenic country walks. Overall, our stay completely exceeded expectations and we are already looking forward to returning. 100% recommend! :)
Wow! Magic, magic and more magic. Thank you so much
Where to start. Breathtaking from the moment we arrived. Clucking chickens, horses & Southdown sheep were our first acquaintances - and how welcoming they were! Followed by a very warm welcome from the owners and a show round. We dipped under the apple trees and into the enclosed paddock where before us, the most beautiful wagon - a place we were delighted to call home for a couple of nights. Stretched before the wagon, our own enclosed space overlooking the farm and fields beyond but with the privacy we required for our romantic/family get away (celebrating our first wedding anniversary with toddler in tow...!). A campfire laid out with plenty of kindling and wood, a sweet outdoor dining space and benches to huddle on in the evening. Loo and delicious hot shower just a few meters away - what a treat to shower outdoors and in a converted horse box too! Magic at every turn. Inside the wagon, there is everything you could need. Blankets for getting cosy, speaker for some Radio 6 evening wind down/slow morning sounds and a range ready to be cooked upon. We toasted marshmallows on the campfire and cooked a BBQ, before moving indoors to drink wine and play cards by gas light... just perfect. The nipper loved being amongst the fields and the animals, roaming to his hearts content - an amazing experience for him also. We can't wait to come back again - as soon as possible! Utter bliss from start to finish. Easy going, stress free relaxation in the most beautiful setting. Thank you!!
The perfect cozy place to relax with nature
We stayed a night at the wagon and felt welcomed by the lovely scented candles, biscuits & everything that had been carefully thought out for our arrival. The wagon itself is beautiful and clean. It has a lovely cozy bed and the owner had made sure you had everything you'd need for a romantic stay (cooking utensils, bottle opener, candles… ) The shower was incredible. I took a hot shower overlooking the fields and watching the horse. Really quirky but well done. We went for a nice walk to the local pub where the staff were very friendly. I honestly couldn't have wished for a better romantic and relaxing mini break to reconnect with nature and spend time huddled away with my boyfriend. I would love to return.