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From Drummer To Bunny Border
When Nigel Silk's career as a drummer ended he turned his garden in the English countryside into a holiday boarding business for bunnies. - Reuters
Nigel Silk is a professional drummer. But when he left the band he played with he needed a new career. He recalled a conversation he'd had with a friend which gave him an idea to start his own business.
Nigel Silk, owner of the Bunny Hop Inn "This guy had a rabbit so he had to put the rabbit into boarding. He said to me I go to this lady and she's always full with all the bunnies and I have a job to get in sometimes so I thought this has given me an idea. I've got the space here, I'm going to try this; when I retire from the band I'm going to try this and see how it goes and that's how I got in to it."
Nigel played the drums in tribute band T-Rextasy for more than fifteen years and although he hadn't planned to leave the bank quite so soon he says he's got no regrets.
Nigel Silk "To be honest I don't think I could ever go back into a band now, not to travel all over the place."
Nigel hasn't retired yet but he does need another source of income.
So in his garden in the Essex countryside he's built a shed, fitted with enough hutches to give 20 rabbits a holiday home.
Wayne Fischer and Smudge are regular customers.
Wayne Fischer: "Especially my wife being such a big animal lover. When we go on holiday she has peace of mind that her rabbits are well kept for and well groomed and I think that this is the biggest thing for us, that there's someone to take care of it."
He's not making a fortune yet. But with pet owners taking shorter trips more frequently Nigel is finding his services are in demand.
Nigel Silk "I had this idea planned, at a later date really, and I needed a bit of an income really to continue. It's so relaxing, you can sit out here with the bunnies, it's such a contrast to what I was doing. When we were gigging we'd set up and I like music quite loud, so I have the music behind me - God knows how many decibels - and then you'd be I suppose drinking that gut rot red wine as you do, and now I'm sitting in the garden with a cup of tea and a biscuit watching the rabbits. It's quite bizarre."
Nigel still enjoys listening to music but from the comfort of his chair in the garden with a rather different audience.
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