We absolutely love the way this cottage feels full of pleasant surprises, like so many great homes it's the location and delight of the outside space that wins your heart.
So many homes tick the boxes but rarely excite and often the greatest reward comes from somewhere that does just that, this one charmingly challenges you by being slightly unorthodox but in a fabulous way.
It is one of those properties that offers more than you expect, for those who crave a cottage with a unique character, somewhere that is different but rewardingly so, this is the property to pay attention to.
Drive up to it and it hides itself from you demurely behind a stone wall. A gate invites you through into a courtyard that is part shared with two other homes, it is a welcoming place and provides a sense that this is somewhere special.
Step into the kitchen and be greeted by a Rayburn, that bastion of rural life, an instant comforter that will have you mentally reaching for a hot cup of tea and tempting you to stop and chat.
You'll find yourself drawn into the dining room by the view from the windows, it gives you the knowledge that this is a proper rural location, fields open in front of the house, stretching away.
A delightful fireplace provides a decorative centrepiece to the dining area, this room forms part of a wonderful living space, connecting seamlessly with the main living room and another fireplace, home to a wood-burning stove. Together, these two rooms make you feel instantly at ease and you can understand why our client has owned this home for around twenty-five years, why wouldn't you want to stay once you’ve discovered it?
There is a study which overlooks that quaint courtyard, sit at a desk and the muse is sure to inspire you in such a setting. There's a cloakroom and plenty of storage here too.
Upstairs is just as fascinating. Each room has an individual character, differing views and no two are alike, courtyard, fields, trees. There is a shower en suite, tucked out of sight in one, another opens into a dressing room that leads to the bathroom, it is like a 'Jack and Jill' arrangement, almost, it'll make sense when you walk around this home.
One bedroom has steps leading to the attic, a wonderfully useful space in three areas, the main part is easy to stand in at the apex, around six feet ten in ‘old money’, two of the storage areas have a height at the apex of around five feet. We know the owner is fond of the view from the attic window, another glimpse of the character this home is endowed with.
Outside is where your voyage of discovery takes on a whole new aspect. Step out through the 'Front Door' from the sitting room and you are greeted by that wonderful view we have already mentioned, fields stretch away and you may well be tempted to set out upon a nearby footpath and go exploring.
For us, the real magic happens when you cross the lane and walk through the white picket gate onto a path that leads you on a stroll through the main garden. So private, this area captivates, springtime brings a carpet of primroses and chionodoxa with daffodils standing guard above. Sunlight glints off the surface of a pond and a gentle breeze whispers through the branches of the trees. Every step reveals a new vista, the garden stretches away, grass appears, opening out to create a play area and you can see so much potential for fun here. A place for the barbecue, a greenhouse promises the opportunity of new growth and change, to take part in the development of this lovely environment.
Signs exist of local wildlife, birdsong accompanies you and you turn to find the house has disappeared and you are enveloped in the calming arms of this woodland scene. It will change, colours altering and views changing, there will be opportunity to pick apples and hazelnuts and plan meals that will remind you of the cycle of growth and turn of the seasons.
From the cottage you can Walk to West Malling station, whether it is for a random trip or daily commute, the prospect of being able to return home to such a rural idyll is enticing. The station is less than a mile away and you can choose your route, the slightly longer one is possibly a fraction over 1 mile.
Tied in with that is the delightful prospect of walking into West Malling, perhaps for a meal at The Swan, renowned brasserie in the thriving Market Town. There are delightful choices for having a drink or a bite to eat, a mix of shops provides constant interest and makes daily life both practical and fun. Exploring the area unearths a wonderfully rich history stretching back through the centuries.
On your way to West Malling, or perhaps you'll tarry on the way back home, enjoy Manor Park Country Park, fifty-two acres, once part of an eighteenth-century estate created by Thomas Douce, with lake and meadows. It is a short walk from the cottage and will provide many hours of pleasure.
When you have a quiet moment, you may begin to trace the history of the cottage, we understand it was once a bailiff’s cottage, believed to be linked to the Broadwater Estate.
We mustn’t forget to mention that there’s a ‘double garage’ and, beside it, a smaller ‘garage/store’, the smaller one really is more for storage and bikes.
All told it is a delightful mix and one that makes this home so enticing.Get in touch if you like this home.