The First Year

Holiday Cottage Eyam Rainbow over garden

We moved into Top Riley on June 30th 2021 and what a year we have had. This has been the transitional period where I have slowly adjusted to this new way of life. Don’t get me wrong we are so lucky and this place is magical. However, I was a teacher for 20 years and I thought I would always be a teacher. But paths take a turn and so mine has completely changed. I have imposter syndrome at times as my safe space was in the classroom, I knew exactly what I was doing, it was familiar. As the education system changed and my beliefs as a teacher were harder to accomplish it was time for change. Running our own business has been a great experience and I have learnt so much and still have a way to go yet. We have so many plans but we know we need to be patient and take our time in building what I imagine. This image is of a space for guests to enjoy a slice of Peak District paradise where nature explodes from all aspects of Top Riley. Where visitors can experience the beauty this place has to offer but with all the comforts to give each person a truly memorable break. 

I have so many ideas that I often wake early, take my coffee to the outside patio and have a moment with just myself, the birds, the deer and the very loud pheasant to ponder what this place is to so many who visit. 

Eyam has accepted us and welcomed us with open arms. My social calendar has never been so full. The parents of the children of Eyam primary school have been truly lovely. We feel apart of the village life from building the rat to burn on the bonfire to helping the little ones maypole dancing. Each month brings an old tradition that is so new to my family but that we thoroughly enjoy being apart of.

As the pandemic becomes the past I think about the future of holidays in the UK. But with the airport chaos that continues and the prices of going abroad I feel certain we can offer something for everyone at Top Riley. 

I’m sitting here on a beautiful summer’s night realising what a journey we have had. Thinking how very blessed we are and remembering what my dad said on my wedding day ‘do not forget to look up and smell the roses’.


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Eyam Museum

20 minute walk into the village, opposite the playing fields

Eyam Museum aims to open Tuesday to Sunday from 10:00 with last admission at 15:15. The museum closes at 16:00. It is advisable to pre book tickets on the website. The museum will give you a real insight into the history of Eyam and the details of the plague through detailed local accounts of how it spread, who died and who survived.