Willow Cottage lies in the charming hamlet of Wingmore, about halfway between the villages of Elham and Barham. The cottage is peace and tranquility personified and is surrounded by 0.975 acres of country garden designed to encourage wildlife and backs onto farmland with views across the rolling hillsides of the Elham Valley. This delightful cottage was originally built in 1732 and extended more recently but includes some lovely period features such as old pine wood flooring, an oak staircase, leaded light windows and traditional powder coated cast iron radiators. The main entrance porch with its vaulted and Kent peg tiled roof leads to the inner hall and a dining room. This lovely room is accessed via impressive double old pine doors and includes exposed beams and an inglenook fireplace with a handmade tiled hearth and a log burning stove. It opens into the delightful semi- circular conservatory where you can sit and enjoy the views across the garden to the fields beyond. The original front door in the old part of the property opens directly into a beautiful living room with an exposed beamed ceiling and a stunning inglenook fireplace incorporating a Bressemer beam and an inset wood burning stove. It also has a floor access to a cellar that is ideal for storing your favourite wines. There is a large reception hall with a charming circular stained glass window and an antique stained glass and pine door as well as a stunning country style kitchen/breakfast room with an inset gas Aga and handmade quarry tiled flooring, made in nearby Stowting. You will also find a large adjacent utility room with stable door access to the garden and a downstairs cloakroom with a shower on the ground floor. Upstairs there is a U shaped galleried landing leading to a modern family bathroom with a bath and a separate shower as well as four double bedrooms all offering delightful rural views and two having fascinating brick chimney breasts. There is a very large attic with an existing dormer window so it would be possible to extend into the loft, subject to the appropriate planning permissions. The outside has much to offer. There is a very large pottery studio with lighting and water with a working kiln that keeps the whole place lovely and warm. This room could also make an ideal hobby area, office or games room. There is a Kentish Barn style double garage with additional lockable storage space for garden machines, as well as a small gated area with a corner summerhouse and a wildlife pond. Most of the garden has been created in conjunction with Kent Wildlife Trust to encourage wildlife so there are plenty of wild flower beds, willow trees that provide a habitat for about 400 species of birds and insects as well as ponds where ducks reside to bring up their families. The garden has been awarded the Gold Award by the Kent Wildlife Trust yearly from 2015 to 2018 and Garden with Best Buzz in 2018. There is a large summerhouse, greenhouse, tool shed and hidden seating areas where you can watch the sunrise and a willow walk leading to a fascinating willow covered enclave. Trees abound in this garden including a variety of fruit trees, copper beeches and silver birch that you can admire as you wander through the various walkways past the vegetable patch, the wild garden and the blackberry bushes. The plot is fenced on all sides with stock proof fencing with mature hedging to three sides. The fourth side faces south with beautiful views across the North Downs over the Elham Valley. The plot is entered via a double five bar farm style gate.
“I moved here some 25 years ago because I loved the position but at that time it was a cottage in a field. So it has taken a long time to develop the garden and I have been working on it for the past 10 years. I run creative therapeutic workshops and find the environment is ideal as clients can also wander around the garden and enjoy the serenity and tranquility of their surroundings. However we feel that we need to move to somewhere smaller but will be sad to leave such a wonderful place. Although the cottage is out in the country, it is not far from Elham or Barham and there is a regular bus service between Folkestone and Canterbury that passes along the Elham Valley Road. Elham is the ultimate Kentish village redolent in the charming atmosphere of a bygone era in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. It has a delightful village square surrounded by beautiful and historic houses full of individual character as well as the requisite pub on one side and the village church on the other. It is also a very friendly community and includes the Kings Arms and Rose and Crown pubs as well as the Abbot's Fireside hotel and restaurant and the Cosy Tearooms. The village has a corner shop/newsagent, a post office in the pub three times a week and tennis courts beside the village hall that offers a variety of activities such as yoga classes, pilates and badminton. There is also has an active football and cricket club and a good primary school.
Barham is a very friendly village with an historic church and a modernised and extended village hall that offers a variety of activities and facilities. These include two large halls, a conference/meeting room and a post office as well as a useful village shop run by volunteers that sells everything you need from light bulbs to specialist local wines and homemade bread and cakes to fresh meat. There is an excellent pub/restaurant nearby, a well-respected village school and an active tennis and bowls club. In the nearby village of Bridge you will find a cricket club and also a variety of shops including a small supermarket, a health food shop and a hair and beauty salon. Bridge also has a number of pubs, restaurants and a tea shop plus a dentist and a very good surgery and clinic. Broome Park Golf Club is close by for golfing aficionados and for those who enjoy riding, Covert Wood offers some splendid ‘off road’ facilities, while there are lots of great places to take the dog for a walk. Very good private and grammar schools are available in Canterbury, Folkestone and Dover and there is easy access to the A2 for Dover, Canterbury and London.”
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We could not have wished for a more perfect buyer for our bespoke property. Ross Anderson and his team found them. A truly First class service! Read full reviewReview Added: Jan 15th, 2020
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