A view to big changes

When Mike Foster and his wife Susan moved into this property in 2006, they were in no doubt about its potential for transformation into a fantastic four-bedroomed family home.

They employed an architect who was used to working on similar projects, but set about using their own ideas to create a comfortable and spacious house that makes the most of its lovely setting and amazing views.

“It has that thing of being in a semi-rural location in that it isn’t overlooked at all and you can get away from city life, while not being far away from train stations and shops and so on,” said Mike.

Having remodelled other properties, they were confident enough to make sweeping changes, including creating two new bedrooms with the addition of dormer windows.

The back of the house, which overlooked the large garden and farmers’ fields, was extended by 50 square metres to create a superb, large, open plan area, with kitchen, dining area and living space dominated by large patio doors which flood the room with light and overlook the garden and those sweeping country views.

“It made sense to move the sitting room from the front to the back where we get the views. We are not overlooked at all – we rarely draw the curtains!”

We have enjoyed beautiful sunny summer days and starry nights sitting here in this room,” he said.

“In wintertime when it’s cold outside, we’re sitting there cosy with the wood burning stove on!”

The garden was also transformed from a ‘bit of wilderness’ to a landscaped retreat, with even the outbuildings being renewed and the drive tarmacked. Externally there are a range of outbuildings including a large garage/workshop and outhouse, both with power and light, a log store, tool-shed and greenhouse.

The old part of the ground floor was also remodelled, Mike explained.

“What had been four square rooms was converted into a study, downstairs shower room and sitting room on one side and on the other a master bedroom suite.”

This suite is one of Mike and Susan’s favourite places; the bedroom has a large dressing room and a big ensuite bathroom and offers a perfect retreat when relaxation is needed.

The couple are downsizing, feeling they no longer need what is most definitely a family home, but they will miss the house they have transformed into something special.