Rhydd Barn

2017 Assessment

Rhydd Barn

Below is the full text of the latest report of VisitEngland’s annual assessment of Rhydd Barn carried out in May 2017. In common with over 30,000 other accommodation businesses in England, this assessment determines the quality and star rating of Rhydd Barn.


Star Rating:★★★★Gold86%
Designator:Self Catering
Date of Assessment:4 May 2017
Type of Assessment:Day Visit
Welcome Schemes:Walkers Welcome
Discussion with:Mrs Boaz

Your Star Rating

How the Star Rating is Achieved
Your star rating is reached by assessment of three elements:

  1. Overall Quality
  2. Sectional Consistency (the Five Areas of Quality, which are of particular importance—Cleanliness, Public Areas, Bedrooms, Bathrooms and Kitchen)
  3. Your Provision of Services & Facilities. You must provide all the services and facilities for Self Catering minimum entry (All Star Ratings) these are all listed in the Quality Standards booklet. All three elements must be met to achieve a rating.

Overall Quality

How the Overall Quality Rating is Achieved
The minimum overall quality score for your target star rating must be met. We assess 46 aspects of your property (under nine area headings) and score each aspect from 1 to 5 (1 being acceptable; 5 being excellent).

1 *2 *3 *4 *5 *

Additionally, five of the “Assessment Areas” must meet Sectional Consistency, as these are the most significant in terms of guest expectation. These are Cleanliness, Public Areas, Bedrooms, Bathrooms and Kitchen. Each of the five Sectional Consistency Areas must reach the standard required for your Star rating and must fall into the relevant band for your target star rating.

AreaOverall quality scoreKey area score (5=best)AspectScore (5=best)
Exterior87%Appearance of the Building5
Grounds, Garden & Parking4
Environment, First Impression4
Cleanliness100%5Public Areas5
Management & Efficiency87%Guest Info Including Brochure4
Welcome and Arrival Procedure4
In Unit Guest Information & Personal Touches5
Public Areas84%4Decor4
Fixtures, Fittings, Furnishings and Furniture4
Lighting, Heating4
Space, comfort, ease of use.4
Fixtures, Fittings, Furnishings and Furniture4
Space, Comfort ease of use4
Fixtures, Fittings and Sanitary Ware4
Lighting, Heating and Ventilation4
Space, Comfort & Ease of Use4
Fittings and Furniture4
Lighting, Heating and Ventilation5
Electrical Equipment4
Crockery, Cutlery and Glassware4
Kitchenware & Utensils4
Space, Comfort and Ease of Use4
Additional FacilitiesN/AReception, Shop, Bar and RestaurantN/A

Assessment Summary

AreaDetailed remarks
Units SeenRhydd Barn was viewed (1 of 1) accompanied by the owner Mrs Boaz
CleanlinessIn the public areas excellent attention to detail was noted particularly to flooring and high level surfaces. In the bedrooms furniture interiors were pristine and bed linen was pressed and immaculate. In the bathroom and shower room fittings such as taps were polished. Fan covers were dust free. In the kitchen care is taken with the cleanliness of the kitchen equipment and inventory items were all spotless.
Living AreasAgain investment has included glazing with the door panels renewed recently which has enhanced appearance. Painted finishes were in an excellent condition and original artwork connected with the family is in place which includes ornaments as well as pictures. A further rug has been added to the middle floor and this is helping protect the vulnerable wooden flooring. Ample seating is provided as is surface space in both the open plan ground floor and middle floor. It is understood a larger television is now being considered. The mezzanine has a useful desk and guests enjoy excellent views from this area. Some of the wooden pieces of furniture and fittings would now benefit from some attention to revitalise the finish and presentation achieved as was discussed.
BedroomsThe bedroom is well appointed with decor again in a very good condition. Some changes to the storage layout within the fitted wardrobe has been positive since the last assessment. Fittings such as lamps present well. The dressing table chair would benefit from some attention to ensure that it remains sturdy and robust. Blinds and curtains are provided. The mattress is supportive. It was suggested that a larger king size duvet would enhance presentation and guest comfort.
BathroomsThe property which accommodates two guests benefits from offering both a shower room on the first floor and bathroom on the second floor. Tiling and grouting condition is excellent. It was mentioned that when seals are replaced it is important that they are neat. Fixtures and fittings are all in a very good order and smaller items such as toilet brushes and bathroom mats have been renewed. Flooring is hygienic. Lighting is well positioned. It was suggested that a grab rail could be provided for the bathroom.
KitchenThe open plan kitchen area has very good quality feature tiles adding interest. The units overall are in a very good condition however the wall cabinet above the sink and kettle is starting to deteriorate. It was discussed that this could be replaced with an alternative shelving or plate rack system to avoid trying to rematch doors. Renewing edging strips on the work top was suggested. Kitchen equipment and kitchenware continues to be of high quality with items being effectively maintained. Ample cups and mugs are provided and these could be rationalised. Lighting and ventilation are of a very good standard.
Management EfficiencyPre booking information is helpful and a brochure download is available. The barn attracts a high percentage of repeat guests and an efficient booking procedure is in place. It is understood that milk and local seasonal produce is provided as part of the welcome. Toiletries and new towels were also observed as in place. Guest information management and content continues to be excellent and is a credit to the owner. New Wi-Fi provision has been introduced this year.
Website Feedback & Business AdviceOn completing a Google search using the laptop for holiday cottages between Malvern and Upton the website www.rhyddbarn.co.uk was found on page 2 of the results. New versions of the Star rating and Award logo will be forwarded and it was appreciated that an access statement has been provided on line. Some of the photographs could be updated as was discussed. The personalised map works well. A test on Google called 'test my site - thinking with Google was completed and it was found that the website does benefit from being mobile friendly however it could be improved by further developing the tap size targets. Loading speeds could also be further enhanced as was mentioned.Additional advertising was noted on Farmstay and Christian Holidays. Additional on line marketing information can be found on the VisitEngland website - www.visitengland.com/biz/onlinemarketing tool.
Potential For ImprovementIn the public areas it was suggested that some of the wooden furniture items and fittings would benefit from refreshment to enhance presentation in the longer term and to ensure that condition is sustained. It is appreciated that a new larger television is being considered. In the bedroom a larger king size duvet could enhance presentation of the bed and guest comfort. It is important to ensure that seals when refreshed are kept neat. A grab rail could be introduced in the bathroom. In the kitchen replacement of the unit above the sink and kettle which is becoming damaged was encouraged. Edging strips on the work surfaces could be updated. The number of mugs and cups provided could be rationalised.
HighlightsThe property externally presents excellently with some glazing renewal completed. The stable is currently being renovated to provide additional storage. New edging for the drive was noted as were changes to the building with work completed to the rear of the barn. Work to the boiler and sewage system have been completed this year. The property offers a variety of public areas with ample seating and excellent flooring continues to be in place. Painted surfaces are all in an excellent condition and original artwork provides interest. A new rug has been purchased. Bathroom fittings are in a very good condition and kitchenware and equipment is all being very well maintained. Kitchen lighting and heating is particularly effective. Excellent housekeeping was once again commendable. The owner spends time ensuring that the extensive guest information continues to be up to date and content was once again excellent.

Provision of Minimum Entry Requirements

To be recognised within the Self Catering scheme the minimum requirements listed in the Standard need to be met. Sufficient quality should be provided to meet the minimum requirements for One Star, in all areas of the operation covered by the quality indicators in the Standard.

The key minimum entry requirements for achieving a Self Catering One Star rating are:
A cooked breakfast, or substantial continental available. Proprietor and/or staff available for guests’ arrival, departure and at all meal times. Once registered, resident guests have access to the establishment at all times unless previously notified. All areas of operation meet the minimum quality requirements for cleanliness, maintenance and hospitality as well as facilities and the delivery of services. A dining room or similar eating area available unless meals are only served in bedrooms. All the current statutory obligations must be met. Public Liability insurance cover must be provided.

For Provision of Minimum Entry Requirements your rating is: Meets

Areas requiring action before next assessment: All areas meet the requirements of your star rating. No remedial action has been identified at this time.