Behind the scenes at Cedar Retreats in West Tanfield

Cedar Retreats

Cedar Retreats - Credit: Archant

Discover how your perfect hideaway can also become a sound investment

Cedar Retreats

Cedar Retreats - Credit: Archant

Cedar Retreats is an exclusive development of 32 contemporary holiday homes set in six acres of parkland on the edge of the village of West Tanfield in the wonderful North Yorkshire countryside. The cedar properties combine the warmth of wood with all the home comforts of contemporary living and are built with sustainability in mind.

Mike Fraine

Mike Fraine - Credit: Archant

But this is a standout development for two more key reasons. Each property known as a retreat is finished to an unexpectedly high specification and there is a professional, experienced on-site management team.

It is just this calibre of management that persuaded Halifax businessman and property owner Mike Fraine to invest in a three-bedroom retreat at the park not only to enjoy with his family but also to rent out.

‘I always look at the people first when I consider making an investment,’ said Mike, sales director at R&R Ice Cream at Leeming Bar, one of the country’s leading ice cream manufacturers.

‘Then I look at the partners, and then the property. I believe if you have the right calibre of people involved then you will make money on your investment because you know they will do everything right.’

Mike, who has a holiday home in Florida and other rentals in this country, was thinking about another property investment when he came across Cedar Retreats. ‘Here I can retreat from business life, I can relax and no one can get to me. There is privacy and I feel quite a way from the world. The place delivers more than my expectations and I’ve easily achieved seven per cent return on my investment.

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‘The quality of the build is fantastic and people we’ve rented to are booking to come back. People do develop an emotional connection with the property. They are like second homes. They are in a good location, on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales, not far from Masham or Harrogate. There are so many attractions to enjoy and the Tour de France race will be passing by this summer.’

Cedar Retreats has been developed by James and Sarah Gawthorpe.

Their idea is to create not just the perfect exclusive retreat but also a sound, long term property investment. ‘We have guests booked in for holiday breaks through our partners Hoseasons,’ said Sarah. ‘We are part of their Autograph Lodge Holiday Collection. Our properties are also bespoke, created to order, which makes them ideal as your own, exclusively. And because they are made to such high quality they will endure as an investment.’

‘The six-acre parkland, which has a lake, is now being planted by Chelsea award-winning landscape architect Alistair Baldwin. ‘The parkland is surrounded by wonderful countryside and is within walking distance of a thriving village, that has a church, still has its post office and shop as well as two pubs,’ said James.

The style of property had to be exceptional, different to anything they had seen on the market and yet still be available at an affordable price. The couple also wanted to get buyers involved right from the beginning. ‘Cedar Retreats are bespoke,’ said James. ‘Buyers can design their own layout; one bedroom, two or three bedrooms, bathroom, sitting room, separate dining room, kitchen. We will work with a buyer to create exactly what they want within their budget.’

But if buyers just want to move straight in to a completely furnished and equipped property then that can be arranged too. Sarah is expert in creating warm and inviting interiors. Each retreat has a 125 year lease and is built to property regulation standards, although that’s not required by planning rules. And each property has two parking spaces ‘What we have tried to do is raise the bar, raise the specification so people get real value for their money,’ added James. n

Find out more at the Open Day at Cedar Retreats on Sunday, March 23rd from 11am to 3pm

Call 01677 470284 or email or visit for more information