Episode 81

81 - Tess Astbury and Ben Slore on building a completely sustainable, minimal footprint, almost entirely re-purposed forest getaway

Posted April 5, 2023


By the time I’d finished chatting with Tess Astbury and Ben Slore, the incredibly resourceful and consciously-minded couple responsible for establishing Huntingdon Tier Forest Retreat in Dysart, Tasmania, I’d realised this pair were truly a couple of kindred spirits.

With an unflinching commitment to sustainability and repurposing of materials, Ben and Tess, via Facebook marketplace, procured a decommissioned school bus otherwise destined for scrap metal and relocated it to a picture-perfect plot of land in the Tasmanian Southern Midlands.

What followed was a process of painstakingly converting the bus and immediate surrounds into a truly one of a kind, minimal footprint getaway for two, utilising found and secondhand items. This included the property’s hot tub, which after much trial and error Ben managed to eventually set up to operate using the process of thermosiphoning, or in layman’s terms heating without a traditional pump.

Now almost two years down the track, Tess and Ben have accumulated 262 Airbnb reviews with an average score of 4.98 out of 5 and were last year named finalists in the Airbnb host awards for best unique stay.

With their future plans including the set up of another converted bus on the same site, this industrious duo have a bright and creative future ahead of them. I hope you enjoy hearing all about their story in this value-packed episode today.

Show Notes

Huntingdon Tier Forest Retreat Website