Hippersons Houseboats - The Past; The Present; and The Future
Houseboats have been part of the Hipperson's business for decades, initially at the first yard near the Beccles Lido in the 1960s and 70s, with the five currently at the 'new' site (where we are today) between the bridges. Originally the houseboats could only be accessed by water, and customers used to have to row across the river with their luggage on arrival. This was improved with access from the land at the current site by the Harrison family who owned the yard from 1970 to 2014.
The Sparrow family brought the business from The Harrison's in the summer of 2014. We were delighted to acquire a business that was known and loved by the local community and quickly put local fears to rest that the business would be stopped and the yard used solely for moorings.[Text Wrapping Break]We have loved building on the legacy inherited and have quickly set about trying to bring the boat yard into the present day, whilst keeping its wholesome values intact. We have painted the outside and inside of all the houseboats, removed the coin meters for electricity and taken away any hidden costs, i.e. the cost of using the sailing rig. We believe the price you pay should be the price you pay. We have added free wifi across the site for all our guests, and purchased the field next to the next to the yard and now all access routes to all our houseboats are on our land.
Within the houseboats we have changed all the linen, and fitted new carpets and new curtains. 4 of the houseboats have had a small door and window replaced with French sliding doors allowing an uninterrupted view of the broads - even on a rainy day. All have had new cookers, fridges, microwaves, kettles, flatscreen TV with built in DVD and new matching crockery sets. A lot of amendments have been made based on customer feedback and our own assessment of the houseboats.
We believe each houseboat mixes the old wholesome holiday approach with lots of healthy outdoor activities and some modern day touches, such as Wifi and DVDs. All our guests have use of a boat and easy access to the local town. We have located a free DVD and book library in the office for all our customers to use and this has proved really popular with everyone, locals and visitors often borrow to read and view, and occasionally add new so even we get to see new films (thank you). We have tried hard to bring the houseboats into the 21st century whilst retaining the features that were loved by the holiday makers of the 60s and 70s.
We have been reading all the reviews over the last three years, and agree that some of the houseboats are becoming dated, despite all of our amendments above, we feel that more still needs to be done. We are currently undertaking a very exciting project, and building work will commence over this winter. We are going to build our first luxury, floating glamping pod, and this will replace one of our houseboats next season as a pilot. We think the design for the pod will address many of the issues we and our customers still feel exist within the houseboats. Once this pilot is underway we will collate further feedback and decide the next steps for Hippersons . Any suggestions or comments are warmly welcome, and we are happy hear them from you.
The Hippersons Boat yard Team
Simon, Mary, Stephen, Luke, Beth, Ella and Nate