Serco Enterprise

Growth Hub Case Study: Larkbeare Grange

19th Sep 2019 Serco Enterprise


Set in 8 acres of picturesque countryside, The Granary offers luxury self-catering accommodation to holiday makers looking to explore Devon. Within easy reach of Dartmoor, Exmoor, beaches and must-see Devonian tourist hotspots, The Granary has potential to be fully booked with keen tourists who want to retreat to the countryside after a busy day. With years of experience delivering business support to the tourism sector, the Heart of the South West Growth Hub has been able to provide meaningful support as the business works to identify and reach new Customers.  

Owners, Charlie and Julia Hutchings, first engaged with the Growth Hub by attending a tourism event designed to help businesses operating in the sector to find new customers, improve their use of digital marketing, investigate online booking systems and explore how to build their brand.

Subsequently, Julia received 1-to-1 business advice from Vince McConville, who provides specialist advice on behalf of the Growth Hub. Julia and Vince discussed Julia’s growth aspirations for The Granary and how the business is currently utilising digital marketing techniques.

On the support that she has received, Julia said:

The Granary offers holiday-makers a luxury experience and offers one-level accommodation with disability-aware features included - it is a perfect retreat for those with mobility or other disability issues. I must ensure that our promotional efforts reflect the level of architectural thought that has been put into the building.

Since meeting with Vince, I am working towards ensuring the website is the hub of my online and offline marketing activity. Vince followed up with a review of the website with top tips of how to optimise the site, ideas to make it more user-friendly and information to start using social media and email marketing to best promote The Granary’s unique features.

The Growth Hub’s tourism event and Growth Support Service have been invaluable to help me devise an action plan for future marketing activity. I am better equipped to move forward with my growth aspirations for the business.

Could your business benefit from the Growth Hub’s Growth Support Service?  Here are some of the steps The Granary has taken towards realising their growth aspirations:

GROWTH HUB WORKSHOP: “Tourism businesses – Improve your use of digital tech”

This workshop is for businesses operating in the tourism sector to help them harness digital technology and marketing techniques to boost sales, improve profile and manage online bookings.

Run as a series across Devon, Plymouth, Somerset and Torbay; interested businesses can visit to see future dates and similar events.

The workshops also provide a forum for like-minded businesses to network, collaborate and receive free, impartial advice from a Growth Hub business adviser.


Following the workshop, Julia received digital marketing support with specific reference to website optimisation and SEO top tips.

Information about various online booking system plugins that are compatible with the website

Advice about social media and email marketing set-up and operation


In receipt of her own business support plan, Julia has an opportunity to realise her initial growth aspirations for the business now with the tools and information in place following her support session


Guidance from HM Government on business support which include an extensive range of content and tools covering a range of business sectors, issues and themes.

Referral to the Business is GREAT Britain online guidance which includes information and tools for starting, growing or accelerating a business.

Further information about the Access to Finance programme, a HM Government and BBfA partnership initiative.

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