About

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Taking time out is a game changer.

So what would be your best kind of space to do really great work?

If it’s quiet, peaceful, non-corporate, set in a private, natural valley overlooking a lake, with real food… then The Waterside might be the right place for you.

And did we say it’s only 3 miles from the motorway, north of Swansea?

This is the place we call home and where we do our best work.

It’s also home to our herd of alpacas and an amazing array of wildlife and trees. No two days are the same, though people tell us that our welcome, and the quality of work we do with them, is a constant.

The Long Room is a large, comfortable, self-contained log building with panoramic views across the valley and ample space for small to medium sized groups. People love the informality and flexibility, and the freedom to disconnect from operational pressures.

Our fresh Coaltown Coffee, Welsh tea, homemade cakes, and simple fresh food seem to draw people back time and time again.

That’s because we know how important the environment and sustenance is to doing really great work. It feeds our brains and our souls (and everything else in between).

Why us?

From experience we understand how important it is to take time out to think, talk and be creative if the change you make will produce the kind of fruit you want. 

Sue is an experienced organisational strategist with a very diverse background. This includes a decade as a pioneering chief exec in the NHS in England and in Wales. And she knows just how easy it is to be sucked into short-term, reactive thinking. 

She also knows how important it is to work with others, to create collective headspace to work through the bigger issues - across boundaries. This is the fertile place of genuine creativity and innovation, which we so badly need.

Whilst her background is extraordinarily diverse it’s held together by a core thread of being a quiet disruptor, who thinks and acts strategically. This means she works with a wide range of people, entering into their work with enthusiasm and insight. She is also a speaker and writer, and her new book on Quiet Disruptors is planned for 2019.

Steve is the alpaca shepherd - amongst many other talents - and brings his experience of great hosting, making warm connections and understanding the third sector, to the table.

Together we also care for Sue’s brother with Down's Syndrome, who lives with us, and steward the valley… with a little help from our friends.

The Valley

the waterside about reservoir

The valley is the site of a former Victorian reservoir - the Blaenant Ddu - and some remnants still remain. 

You might stumble upon the overflow tunnel, with its amazing acoustics, or spy stonework hewn from local quarries. Or notice the deep, sometimes fast flowing, water or the steep drops. And the water-steps on your way in are an amazing testament to Victorian engineering. The Blaenant Ddu was truly pioneering in its day.

So there are things to enjoy, but also be aware of. Therefore, The Waterside isn’t really suitable for children, unless under close adult supervision.

And as a working farm, it’s not a neat urban park. So do come prepared, including for our lovely Welsh weather (it’s green here for a reason…)

Our friend Alastair Duncan, artist and founder of StillWalks produced a beautiful short StillWalks video introducing the valley for an event here in Spring 2017. It's a wonderful ‘experience’ of the valley. Enjoy!