School students arriving at a Somerset outdoor education and training centre this summer are in for a surprise, thanks to a grant from the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development.
Outposts Ltd, based at Broomfield on the Quantock Hills, has recently completed five new accommodation lodges to replace the traditional campsite where school students and other groups have enjoyed pitching their tents for more than 20 years.
Surrounded by woodland and pasture, each lodge has a number of bedrooms, complete with bunk beds, and a bathroom with showers and toilets, as well as heating, and is within a short stroll of Outposts’ Bush Camp where there is a communal dining area with gas lighting, wood burner and eco-toilets.
The EU-funded grant was awarded to help Outposts Ltd expand its business by providing accommodation in late Autumn and early Spring when accommodation in tents is less appealing, increasing the usage of the site, generating more business, creating new jobs and supporting the local economy.
Michael Kingscote, the Managing Director of Outposts, said: “Outposts thrives on the rural nature of its setting for our outdoor education programmes, both corporate and youth. We believe wholeheartedly in supporting the local economy to promote and protect the beautiful place in which we live and work, the Quantock Hills.
“One of our initial objectives, when starting the company, was to provide jobs for local people and do what we could to help create a flourishing local economy. The grant we have received will enable us to continue meeting those objectives.”
The lodges were opened officially by Sedgemoor District Councillor Anne Fraser (pictured).
Outposts Ltd, was founded in 1998 and specialises in educational programmes, spanning Institute of Leadership and Management (ILM) courses, leadership training for companies, youth programmes and overseas travel/expeditions.