In 1980, Janet and Peter Stephens were in Sydney on holiday. They had previously seen an advertisement from a travel agent looking for farms to send guests to for rural Australian experiences. They thought that this might be a nice way to meet new people, as well as a chance to supplement dwindling income from the beef cattle operation. They met up with the agent while in Sydney and that’s how it all began.
The family started taking guests on a very small scale in Cedar Glen Homestead where they also lived with their primary school aged children. Janet did all of the cooking on an old wood combustion stove which was kept alight 24hrs a day. The stove was also responsible for generating the hot water, as well we cooking.
As the beef industry continued to deteriorate, with beef prices lowering and expenses climbing, the Stephens family began to increasingly rely on the Farmstay income to keep the property going. Meanwhile, all of the other branches of the Stephens family in the valley had sold their properties as they became unviable without diversification.
The Farmstay has expanded significantly over the years and had accounted for 75% of the properties income up until 2020 when the Stephens family decided it was time to change hands and take a break. The Farmstay lease had since sold and is now ran by the Tainton family who still work closely with the Stephens family when it comes to guest activities and the occasional snake wrangling.
The Tainton family have an unfounded love and respect for the property and intend to share the rich history with guests and return it to it’s former glory.