To launch the annual Shed of the Year competition, sponsors Cuprinol are giving Brits the chance to book their very own ‘shedcation’ at some of the UK’s most spectacular sheds, by joining forces with alternative accommodation site, Airbnb.
The shed ‘wishlist’, which has been curated by founder of Cuprinol’s Shed of the Year, Uncle Wilco, is encouraging people to book a stay at a number of sheds through the Airbnb website.
The wishlist is made up of previous Shed of the Year finalists as well as some new hopefuls taking part in this year’s competition.
The quirky sheds listed on Airbnb range from the repurposed ‘Corrugated Cottage’, which dates back to 1940, and was originally built for the land girls who supported Britain’s agriculture industry during WWII – to the ‘Boatel’, a unique shed created out of an upcycled boat.
Guests can also bob to sleep on the ‘Maid of Dekkin’, Surrey’s finest floating shed, take a dip in the ‘Night at The Museum’s private pool or relax and detox in ‘Gilly’s Hut’ therapy retreat, complete with a double cabin bed and en’-suite bathroom.
Cuprinol’s link-up with Airbnb comes as the annual Shedonomics report by the wood care brand reveals nearly 70% of Brits would rather stay in a shed than a cottage, caravan or tent for a country retreat – with the youngsters of Britain (25 – 34 years) most likely to choose a holiday in a shed over other forms of accommodation (76%).
The shedcation is a trend that is fast gaining momentum as UK shed listings on Airbnb have increased by 88% year on year*, with Cuprinol Shedonomics research finding over a third (35%) of Brits would consider renovating their shed to be able to rent it out.
More than two thirds (63%) of Brits now own a shed and 44% of those who don’t own a shed, would like to. In fact almost two thirds (62%) stated that they would be put off buying a home that didn’t have a shed or garden big enough to house one.
The humble garden shed was voted one of the top five most iconic British pastimes, along with the Queen, a cup of tea, fish and chips and a Sunday roast, beating a traditional fry up and cheese rolling to the top.
Surprisingly it’s no longer just ‘silver sheddies’ who are investing in these wonderful wooden creations, with a more Brits under 25 now owning a shed (63%) than 45 – 54 year olds (60%).
For many, the shed is considered an outdoor haven as 32% of Brits admit to spending quiet time, such as meditating or sleeping in their shed – with men (42%) twice as likely as women (21%) to use their shed as a retreat.
But it’s not all about sneaking off for an afternoon snooze as 11% of men admitted to planning a surprise for their partner in their shed – including proposals and holidays.
And modern sheds are increasingly being used as a space to entertain friends, with 16% of Brits using their sheds to watch movies, browse the internet or entertain guests and 8% have even dined in their shed.
Founder of Cuprinol’s Shed of the Year competition, Andrew Wilcox (Uncle Wilco) said: “Each year the competition seeks to crown the most amazing sheds from across the country and it seems the nation’s love of sheds is stronger than ever.
We’ve already seen a massive influx of entries into this year’s competition, spanning everything from those inspired by the architectural conquests of Grand Designs to the wacky and wonderful hand crafted creations.
“It’s exciting to officially launch registrations for this years’ competition by working with Airbnb as it really captures what Cuprinol Shed of the Year is all about – we want to share these wonderful creations with the nation and give people chance to enjoy them.”
Katie Taylor, brand manager at Cuprinol said: “Since the start of the competition we’ve certainly seen a trend towards people viewing their garden shed as an extension of their home and more people are finding amazing uses for their sheds which goes beyond DIY.
“From garden offices to shed hotels, we want to give people the chance to experience exactly what makes these sheds so special – the care that goes into them and the people that dream them up.”
For more information on Uncle Wilco’s Shed of the Year Shedcation wishlist
The Cuprinol Shed of the Year competition for 2016 is now officially open for registration. To register your shed, visit www.readersheds.co.uk and fill out the form.
*Based on UK figures from Airbnb