Crafters in Moray have unveiled holiday accommodation aimed at helping people “detox” from the modern world while helping to keep traditional skills alive.
Marcassie Farm, near Forres, has long been home to traders using time-honoured techniques to manufacture goods – including using wool from sheep kept on the land, weaving and woodwork.
Now the Rafford-based couple driving the project are nearing completion on the dream they have held for more than 20 years.
Betsy van der Lee and Sven Skatun have been joined by their chef daughter Gulli Skatun and craftsman son Kris Skatun to run the venture.
Together the family hope to encourage visitors from the cities to learn more about traditional crafting skills while also sampling them themselves.
Mrs van der Lee said: “One of the core ideas is not just leisure tourism but also educational tourism where people can actually experience things themselves.
“We want to attract people from the cities to bring groups of people here for things like team building or meetings.
“There’s something quite wonderful about making something really simple from basic materials from nature.
“We hope that by seeing the whole process through from start to finish it can really connect people to the environment and also with each other.”
Three double lodges have been built at the farm, providing space for up to 12 people sharing the accommodation.
Wood used in the construction have been grown in Scotland with timber linings inside being reused from the local whisky industry.
Activities on the farm are expected to include tasters on growing fruit and vegetables as well as how to prepare and preserve them, sheep handling and basket weaving.
Mrs van der Lee said: “We’ll focus particularly on targeting and bringing into Moray creative people, including writers, film-makers, dancers, songwriters and musicians, as well as younger city entrepreneurs and corporate groups.
“We hope it will appeal to people with ‘green’ values looking for places to team-build, detox or experience some time away from electronics.
“For off-farm experiences we will collaborate with other tourism providers in Moray, including tour guides and venues.
“We hope the project will provide a collaborative platform to let people showcase and deliver their products, skills and services, particularly for younger people.”
Extra revenue is expected to be generates from a kitchen area that will serve produce from the area for guests, tourists and visitors.
Marcassie Farm received £163,000 from the Moray Leader funding programme to help cover about half of the expected costs to complete the work.
The group previously allocated cash from the Scottish Government and the European Union to support economic development in the area.
Chairman Alastair Kennedy praised the “ambitious” initiative for its collaboration with a range of different organisations while backing its tourism objectives.