De Houtkamp is much more than a group accommodation, Bed & Breakfast and the Herenboerderij!
We would like to tell you more about the history of De Houtkamp, our company and what we can offer for overnight stays.
De Houtkamp is a very varied company with over 40 dairy cows and accompanying young stock, 250 free-range chickens, whose eggs are intended for home sales. We also have a recreational branch, consisting of the group accommodation, the Bed and Breakfast rooms and the Herenboerderij.
Over the years, the company has actually grown.
In the 1930s the grandfather and grandmother of my husband came to live here. The farm was leased from the Voute family. It was not such a rosy time in the financial field. Extra income had to come to keep the head above water. Those were found in keeping full board. That pension has remained there over the years, my parents-in-law have also continued. Meanwhile, they had taken over the farm. Then there had to be prospects for the successor, so my husband.
In 1975 a cubicle barn for the cows was built. This made the part empty. The cows moved to the new barn. The first plans for the group accommodation were forged.
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In the early 90’s, Peter and I took over the farm. We still had a shed with pigs, but due to the stricter regulations we had to invest a lot to get things right again. We did not see that; the numbers were too small. We decided to participate with the first Opkoopregeling. The stables were converted into dormitories for the group accommodation. Meanwhile, it has grown so that we can accommodate 64 people. The two dormitories that we already had at the recreation room were added to it, making it bigger, more spacious and lighter. A whole operation that has resulted in us turning to full satisfaction with a good occupation.
The bike rental was a leap in the deep, as we started in 1994. But after a number of years we can say that it has also become a good source of income. You are very dependent on the weather. We have more than 150 bicycles from large to small, and from bicycle bag to trailer bike. The Bakfiets and the Kindertandem are very popular! When you rent a bike you can never say how busy it will be; it is sometimes very chaotic. You have to be able to handle that. Our children sometimes said: Just hang a plate at the door, that we are eating. But that is not possible, just in that time most bikes are rented out. De Hoge Veluwe, our neighbor, has of course the famous white bicycles. Many people also use it, but there are more and more people who like a better bike and then they are at the right address.
Continue bed & breakfast
There was also a great demand for accommodation with breakfast on our farm. In the past it had been there, but we had not continued that at first. Yet we have picked up the thread again! The Bakhuus, next to the farm was converted into a room for two people. A real challenge! But it is going very well, and we have a lot of fun with it. The contact is different than with the people of the group accommodation, more intensively. Since 2004 we have three rooms. After the bird flu erupted, whereby all our chickens, pheasants and peacocks were cleared, we decided not to repopulate the large loft. We now only have a small box with 250 free-range chickens. The space that was released was used for bicycle rental. Where the bikes first stood, the two new rooms were realized. P>
In the summer of 2006 we built a new young barn; the old one has been completely demolished. The new barn has large straw boxes, small boxes for calves up to a day or ten, a bull pen and three sections of grille for different ages of cattle. Come and have a look!
The winter of 2007/2008
In the winter 2007/2008 we have adjusted our group accommodation. The recreation room, or De Deel, has undergone a metamorphosis! Cavity walls, underfloor heating and lots of light because the large doors have been replaced by windows! You look into the forest like that! There is also a toilet on the part, very practical. A major renovation that was made possible by LTO Noord and the Province of Gelderland.
In this way we have a lot of variation in our work, very enjoyable. The other side is that you have to keep a lot of both the farm and the side branches and you need to know a lot. That gives a lot of administrative red tape and work. Since September 2005 we have been working with staff from Agrarische Bedrijfsverzorging. A few hours a week out of season and in summer almost every day a few hours. That saves a lot, there is not so much pressure on the boiler.
In 2009 we added 19 m to the cow barn, so much more light and space has been added to the barn. This in turn benefits the welfare of the cows.
The male farm a new branch
We spent two years with our son in a VOF, but unfortunately he has withdrawn. He is a farmer in heart and soul, that only can not succeed here. You need the recreation to keep the head above water. That recreation does not attract him like that, hence his choice. He is now married and grandfather and grandmother have moved to the village. We bought the house where they lived, actually with the intention that our son would live there. That was different. Now it has been refurbished and we rent it as a Herenboerderij. A new branch! P>
In the winter 2012/2013 we have started to renovate the dormitories. Two large halls in the shower and toilet areas are now finished. Wood paneling, lightly painted walls and new double-glazed windows provide more atmosphere and comfort. P>
Meanwhile, the Ovalert is starting to pay off! A computer system where the cows have a sensor on the front leg. This measures the mobility of the cow. Much movement indicates heat; the cow can then be inseminated. That is a godsend for us! There is so much activity at our company that you do not always have a good view of the cows and do not notice a draft or too late. Now a red flashing light in the barn warns this! Inside the computer you can see which cow it is.
End season 2013 h3>
At the end of the 2013, November / December season, we picked up some more to renovate. That is part of our winter period! Now the B & amp; B rooms were up for discussion. New curtains, a new color on the wall, new covers and a few fresh cushions make the whole thing complete. We can stop again. We also have the entrance and the small bedrooms at the shower and toilet room with a wood paneling and lightly painted walls. The gray doors also got a different color, completely in style with the rest. The result may be there.
We already made a small start with renovating the Losse Schuur. The existing toilet is completely stripped and re-tiled with beautiful gray anthracite colored tiles. The standing toilet has been replaced by a hanging unit, very practical. P>
The sanitary facilities of the group accommodation were completely renewed at the end of 2014, which is an improvement! Two showers extra is also very pleasant for larger groups.
Stopped with bicycle rental
1 January 2015 we stopped renting bicycles. For 21 years we were allowed to do this to our full satisfaction, but now we came to a point of whether or not to invest in new bicycles. If you start investing, it means renting for at least another five years. The age of us also plays a role and then the choice was made. The rental has been transferred to Geert’s two-wheelers in the village.
There is now a shovel and a feed mixer on our yard. They save a lot of heavy work! Feeding cows and mixed feed (mixed corn and grass) also has advantages. You do not feed too much or too little because everything is calculated and weighed. The combination of corn and grass together also gives a better intestinal flora in the cows.
We never sit here!
The work pressure is always present, although it is less because the rental of bicycles has stopped. The hectic is fortunately a bit off. Yet the work pressure also belongs a bit to our company. But the place where we live and the tranquility that emanates, make a lot of good! Especially when you sit outside with a cup of coffee or a glass of wine.