If you think of a trailer as just a means of transporting your horse from A to B, think again. Some enterprising folk have been incredibly creative and come up with alternative uses for old trailers. The downside is that you can't get a horse in them any more...
1. Pimms O’Clock
Owned by Kerry Manahan of Typically English Events, this converted blue Bateson trailer — Pricilla the Pimms Pod — travels the country supplying village fairs, weddings and equestrian events across the South East with delicious alcoholic beverages. With a background in catering for equestrian events and country fairs, Kerry bought the trailer when her own mobility began deteriorating and hasn’t looked back. Pricilla remains true to her horsey roots — she was a regular at point-to-points throughout the season. Officially endorsed by Pimms, she’s not just for summer — in winter, you can choose between mulled cider, winter Pimms (served hot with spices and apple juice) and hot chocolate with Baileys. Mmmm! And there are more plans for ‘Penelope’ in the offing…
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2. Caffeine fix
If you fancy a coffee and happen to be in Oxfordshire, then look out for the Horsebox Coffee Co. selling their wares out of a converted Rice horsebox. They pop up at local events such as Newbury Artisan Market and the Thame Food Festival, and even the odd horsey occasion. With rave reviews about their coffee, they sound well worth checking out — particularly their ‘Dark Horse Espresso’. Maybe you can’t completely take the horse out of the trailer…
If you regularly sleep in your horsebox at shows/camp, then it probably isn’t the first place you think of when someone utters the words ‘luxury boutique hotel’. But ‘Ges,’ based in Surrey and available through glamping experts Canopy and Stars, is just that. A 1970s horsebox that was left to rot in a farmer’s field, it was lovingly converted into a cool vintage weekend pad by owners Gary and Yvonne. They originally intended it just for their own use, until everyone begged to borrow it! Parked in a beautiful flower meadow, ‘Little Ges’ — a pony trailer converted into a bathroom — is next door for your exclusive use. There’s everything you could need for a romantic weekend for two — including a panini toaster.
You have decided to buy a second-hand horsebox, but where do you start — and what questions should you ask?
4. Mother’s ruin
A 10-year old Rice trailer has been given a new lease of life by Jon Beauford and his daughter Anna, from Northamptonshire. They’ve converted into a mobile bar known as ‘The Gin Tin.’ The conversion took eight weeks and included painting it royal blue, replacing the door hatches with chalkboard menus and the mudguards with silver aluminium moulds. They specialise in gin cocktails, and proving it hasn’t completely thrown off its horsey roots, the trailer sold drinks to the equestrian elite at the Global Champions Tour in London.
5. Cheesy business
Cheese maker Simon, from Somerset, also proved he was a dab hand at DIY when he converted a 1970s horse trailer into a mobile cheese shop with sleeping pod on the side. Simon, who sells organic and local cheeses to festivals, outdoor events and live shows in the West Country, says: “I wanted to create a space for my cheese business that was different to what was already out there.” He certainly achieved that. The conversion cost £3,000 and we think it was well worth it.
6. Pizza the action
Wouldn’t it be great if you could have delicious wood-fired pizza delivered in a converted Rice trailer, painted a cool shade of light blue? Ode On The Road isn’t the West Country’s answer to Domino’s, but it does make fantastic pizzas in the lovingly restored horsebox, and is available for private hire, weddings and other events. A successful small chain of restaurants in South Devon, and Winner of the 2014 Catey’s Sustainable Business Award, it proves that you can make a great business out of upcycling.