Robert and Sheila work together as a team to ensure you have a fabulous break at our luxury Swaledale guest house whether you're here to relax, on a group reunion or a stop over on a walking holiday.
We've been together since sixth form days in Barnsley, Robert at Holgate Grammar School and myself at Barnsley High School for Girls; I'm not saying how long ago that was! As students, we walked in the Yorkshire Dales staying at various Youth Hostels including Grinton, Aysgarth, Hawes, Malham and Ingleton. In those days you had to walk or cycle between hostels!
Robert studied Industrial Engineering and Design at Loughborough University while I studied Animal Production, Physiology and Nutrition at the Faculty of Agricultural Science at Nottingham University. After graduation and gaining his Chartered Engineer Status, Robert worked initially in industry and then in construction. After university I initially worked in the agricultural industry for Rank Hovis McDougall, then Beecham Animal Health, before gaining my P.G.C.E and becoming a secondary school science teacher. We settled in North Staffordshire close to the Peak District where we raised our three children and acquired quite a few animals including ponies, Herdwick and Hebridean sheep, dogs, cats and ex-battery hens. After our children had left home, we opened our home to B&B guests so when the time came for a career change, it was natural as to what we were going to do! We searched in various locations until we found Cambridge House Countryside Guest House full of history and character with stunning views across Swaledale. (Find out more About Us )
We moved in to a full house of guests on September 19th, 2013; our arrival coincided with that of some guests who looked very perplexed at the large removal van parked outside! Our first breakfast was for nine with the added distraction of the removal men bringing our piano in through the kitchen! Nearly seven years later, we can have a good chuckle about those first weeks at Cambridge House.
During our time at Cambridge House, we've upgraded everything from beds and furnishings to linen and toiletries and food which has been recognised by Cambridge House achieving the highest Visit England award of 5 * Gold.
Our improvements have also been recognised by being Welcome to Yorkshire White Rose Awards 'Guest Accommodation of the Year 2018' and finalists in 2015, 2016 and 2017; Deliciously Yorkshire Taste Awards Winners 2016 and 2017 'Best Yorkshire Breakfast and in October 2019 we were one of one hundred businesses in England to be awarded the Rose Award for Customer service by Visit England. We won't be resting on our laurels though and are always looking out for fresh ideas and ways to improve your stay.
In our 'spare' time we like to walk our three dogs, Jack the Jack Russell, Dora the Labrador and Peggy our rescue Golden Doodle (Poodle x Golden Retriever). Jack is the 'grumpy old man' and very much a terrier; Dora is a typical Labrador with a food obsession; her grand father, Sutton Park Manifesto, was Best Labrador at Crufts. Peggy was abandoned at nine weeks old on Christmas Eve 2015 and needs lots of cuddles and judging by her behaviour, is 99% poodle!
Robert's other hobbies include classic cars, we have a 1952 Series MM Morris Minor which we've had since 1980; industrial archaeology and social history of Swaledale and when he gets the chance, he enjoys a spot of fly fishing. I continue to be passionate about nature and the environment and am a keen member of the R.S.P.B. I also enjoy cooking and making my home-made jams, marmalades, curds and chutneys and have had great fun on cookery courses at Bettys in Harrogate.