From time to time I view houses for sale on behalf of friends who are looking to buy in the area. It’s purely for fun, nothing more than being able to offer a helping hand and the ability to impart a little local knowledge. It’s easy to rave about beautiful manoirs set amidst rolling parkland but rarely do I come across somewhere that I simply can’t stop thinking about. Something that really strikes a chord.
Earlier in the week I had the pleasure of looking around this gorgeous little house in a village about twenty minutes from us. It is positioned right in the centre of the small village on a quiet side road that perhaps sees ten or fifteen cars pass in a day at most.
Now before you get too excited and imagine a mass of stunning photos to follow of a perfect move-in ready luxury abode, I must tell you it needs a lot of work – I mean a vast amount! You’d easily spend at least what you bought it for again plus some more, but then that’s just the point as the asking price is only 75,000 euros! And imagine how it could be. For me this is just like a small-scale manor house, perfection in miniature with a host of original features and traditional touches that shout out loud how serious this building both used to be, and could be again. This is why I can’t stop thinking about it, my imagination is running wild with what I would do.
Just look at the patina, the colours, the old stone and the proportions. It stands proud and bold and yet it is not at all out of place. It is not large or grand, but it takes its place in the village with confidence.
Entering through the front door there is a small entrance hall
to the right hand side is a well proportioned room that I would make the sitting room. Whilst the work needed is immense there are also plenty of features to preserve, the original wooden floors, the ceiling rose and of course the fireplaces.
In the hallway, someone at some time went to great lengths to hand paint three murals. I think the artist was someone with exceptional talent too.
Also on the ground floor is a small cloakroom and this large kitchen, with plenty of room for an island unit and a large table! Do you note the hint of jealousy in my words!! This room has doors leading out to the garden and it would be perfect for long lazy summer days and al fresco dining, but equally suited to cold winter days warmed by the fire.
Going back into the hallway we head up the original wooden staircase.
to two really good-sized bedrooms and a bathroom.
Heading back downstairs and then outside we find a perfectly adequately-sized garden and some outbuildings.
Plenty of landscaping would be necessary of course, but that’s relatively easy when everything is on a small scale and it shouldn’t be too expensive.
Once one had turned the smaller building below into the most fabulous summer kitchen, you could dine under the stars; I’m already tasting mouth-watering food, and the pungent smell of food cooking on a barbecue punctuating the warm summer air.
To the side is the barn, it will house your car and lawn mower with plenty of space for sun-loungers and garden equipment.I kept feeling the stone on this building, so deftly cut and aged by centuries of life.
There’s water connected and this sink which I would preserve at all costs.
There was also an ancient Massey Ferguson tractor with solid rubber tyres that made the men drool.
Of course the electrics have to be completely redone, but I would keep this junction-board just for the memories!
So I wonder, has this captured your imagination as much as it has mine? I want to go back and spend longer looking around but I know I would just be wasting the agents time. But I’m intrigued, there has to be a cave, ( a cellar), because look, there is this small window right at the level of the pavement, I didn’t see or notice an entrance, but that surely leads to something and I’m now curious, I want to know more!
[EDIT: and then, just before publishing this I read it through again as normal and for some reason something caught my eye in the photo of the hallway. Look! By the door at the foot of the stairs, there is a wooden trap door and it’s hinged. Why had I not noticed that when I was there? It has to lead to the cave. Now I really want to go back, I want to go down there and investigate (with Roddy of course because I do get seriously spooked in dark places). I wonder what we might find!]