When you enter the front garden through the red gate the high stone wall separates the property from the village, providing plenty of privacy. The path leads to a door that opens into a red-walled vestibule, and then to a large oak door with carved panels, brought here from China by the owner's ancestors.
The Chinese door opens into a sunflower-yellow entry hall. There is an old carved bench, a grandfather clock, and very old, charming "Marriage a la Mode" framed engravings hanging on the wall. A staircase leads to the bedrooms in the old part of the house. Down a hall on the right, another stairway leads to the newer wing, built in 1901 by the current owner's great grandfather.
One of the best things about this house is that there is so much to look at! This is not an austere atmosphere; there is family history here, and it’s all being shared with you. This is a wonderful home with a true fell of the family who own it.
The large, impressive sitting room is on the left of the entrance hall. It is comfortable and homey. A sofa, upholstered in plaid fabric, faces the fireplace. A chaise lounge, covered in reds, sits under the leaded glass windows that look out to the walled front garden. A second chaise lounge, upholstered in red and creme stripes, sits by a curio cabinet that holds many fine family heirlooms. Three Adams-style chairs, and a wing chair, provide additional seating. The large stone fireplace has a heavy wood mantle. A small, round antique table is perfect for cards, or board games. A TV/VCR is tucked in beside the fireplace. A rare piano may be used with prior permission. The blue china bowl under the piano was used to bathe the owner's grandfather onboard the ship he was brought back on from India as a baby. French doors open onto the beautifully manicured main garden.
The dining room is across the hall. It seats 14 at an extended round oak table. Walls are pomegranate red with crisp white woodwork. An oak dresser holds antique china, and a collection of beer mugs. A decorative fireplace has a carved wood mantle, and bookcases on both sides. Views, through textured creme curtains, are of the manicured back gardens.
The library, added in 1901, is a wonderful room. It has two sofas, a wing chair upholstered in gold and green brocade, and there is a large brown leather sofa. All of these face the fireplace. A blue, red, and green Oriental rug decorates the gleaming wood floor, and the light yellow walls have damask panels. There are antiques, art, family mementos, a large TV, and a DVD player. Bay windows look out to the lawn. A door opens into the main garden. The gem of this room is the wall-to-wall bookcase. It holds many of the over 5000 books that are in every room of the house. The collection was started by the owner's ancestors over 300 years ago. These books are still highly valued - and read - by the current residents.
The large, friendly farmhouse kitchen has modern appliances: a fabulous blue Britannia 6-burner stove, a microwave-grill-oven combination, a dishwasher, an old pine cupboard and a dresser that holds antique dishes and crockery. The table seats 8 on blue chairs. Floors are terra cotta tile. The window looks out to the front garden.
The breakfast room, the former pantry, has a country table that can seat six. It features a tile floor, bookcase filled with interesting books, yellow walls, a chandelier with purple drop details, and a large dresser with antique china. This is a great room for afternoon tea and children's meals. The back hallway is lined with racks holding antique parasols, rifles, and canes. There is another bookcase here that holds rare books.
The guest powder room has a hand-stitched cloth with the names and marriage dates of the owner's family members from 1608 – 1909.
Upstairs are the six bedrooms and bathrooms. Three of the bedrooms, Chaucer, The Nursery and The Trusty Servant, are in the oldest part of the house.
Chaucer, the oldest bedroom, has a super-king-size bed (6'6") that is covered with a collection of beautiful old fabrics. There is also a single bed on which a child could sleep. The antique furniture includes a mahogany desk and dressing table, a bench, and a drop-down desk. There is a decorative fireplace and a comfortable antique rocker. This lovely and warm room looks onto the front garden, and the gorgeous main gardens to the south.
The en suite bathroom has a tub with a hand-held shower. There is a dressing area, and built-in cupboards.
The Nursery has a king bed that can be converted to twin beds. Beautiful fabrics are used in this room too. There is a decorative fireplace, an antique chest of drawers, wood floor, a beamed ceiling and interesting art. And books, of course! In addition to a collection of children's books, there are books on adventure and travel. We do not suggest that you put babies in the antique rocking cot, but a modern baby's cot is available. The Nursery looks south over the gardens and can be accessed from both the old and new wings of the house.
The en suite bathroom has a shower.
The Trusty Servant bedroom has a queen bed with a sage fabric headboard, and a beautiful hand-made coverlet in creme and sage. There is a mahogany dressing table with a mirror, an oak chest of drawers, a large oak armoire with inlay design, a mirror, a charming corner desk nook, a small bookcase , and a decorative Victorian fireplace. This large room has pine floors, sage green and white patterned wallpaper, a sloping ceiling, green and beige area rug.
The other three bedrooms, Jolly Monks, The Cobbler and The Pump Room, are in the “new” 1901 wing,
Jolly Monks has antique twin beds. Plaid blankets and comfy duvets provide warmth. There is a chest of drawers, an armoire, a dressing table with a mirror. The mantle on the decorative fireplace holds books. Walls are glazed pink and wood work is crisp white. This large bedroom faces south over the garden. The current owner was born in this bedroom.
The very large en suite bathroom has a large Victorian claw-foot tub and a separate shower.
The Cobbler has an antique wood standard double bed. There is an antique armoire-desk combination, and other antique furniture, a slipper chair, a decorative fireplace, and a bookcase. Painted jonquil yellow with white woodwork, this is a very sunny room, facing south over the main gardens. Unusual Dutch glass paintings hang on the walls. The room adjoins Jolly Monks, and has a door to that room, and to the hall.
The Pump Room has a modern, 4-poster queen bed, a small chest of drawers, a heart-shaped table, and a rack for hanging clothes. There is a decorative fireplace and wood floors covered with a pretty Dhurrie rug. This is a small and cozy room, a retreat. Windows look down onto the kitchen garden.
The large hallway bathroom has a tub with shower over tub. The Pump Room, The Trusty Servant (and The Cobbler, if you want) share this bathroom.
Pooh's Corner is a peaceful sitting area on a landing between Chaucer, and The Nursery, where some of the family papers and pictures are displayed. There is a side table bursting with books and papers, a window bench, a gorgeous antique tapestry and books.
The house is on 22 beautifully-maintained acres of lawn, walled gardens, borders, rare specimen trees, fruit trees, three ponds. These are spectacular gardens.