Off-grid glamping site launched in a horse lorry

Ciaran Moriarty and his converted horse box

Ciaran Moriarty of Audio East has launched a new glamping site in Elsing - Credit: Ciaran Moriarty

A man who wanted to help his friends who were out of work during the pandemic has an off-grid glamping site to show for his efforts. 

Ciaran Moriarty, who owns sound engineering firm Audio East, wanted to support his peers in the music industry as much as possible during the pandemic. 

Inside the Getaway Hideaway glamping horse lorry

Inside the Getaway Hideaway glamping horse lorry - Credit: Ciaran Moriarty

With venues shut down and live music unable to go ahead, many people in the events supply chain chose to leave the industry instead of relying on government grants to see their businesses - often sole traders - through. 

As a result Mr Moriarty took out a loan of £50,000 and invited a group of around 20 people to help him convert a horse lorry - and begin work on a second - for glamping use. 

He explained: "I live on a farm and we have a yard where we often store equipment - staging and the like. There's a field nearby which was perfect for glamping and I thought now was the time to diversify a bit and do something with it."

Carving in the converted horse lorry

Artists in the live events supply chain who could not be at shows pitched in to help on the projects - Credit: Ciaran Moriarty


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The refurbished Bedford horse lorry is based in Elsing and is off-grid, complete with eco toilets and showers and set amid half an acre of wildflower fields. 

Mr Moriarty said: "I knew I had some time on my hands and a lot of people I know through the industry were the same. So I asked if they'd like to get involved and it grew into this.

Stove in the converted horse lorry

Inside the Getaway Hideaway lorry - Credit: Ciaran Moriarty

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"I just didn't want them to feel like they had no choice but to leave the industry - we know that hospitality saw a huge skills shortage when they reopened and live music will be the same if not worse. 

"It was a bit of a risk but it's provided us all with some additional income, and now we've got this glamping site which we can run throughout summer depending on restrictions."

The team have now begun work on a second horse box to add to the site. 

A bird sculpture on the glamping site

Touches from artists have been added throughout the site - Credit: Ciaran Moriarty

Mr Moriarty said: "I didn't want to just whack up a couple of log cabins and start raking in the money - we wanted something unique that will be here for years to stay." 

To book the horse lorry visit AirBnB or search for the Getaway Hideaway. 

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