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Ralph Reviews

Ralph reviews a grade II former farmhouse in Clutton

There is no doubt that Autumn is well and truly here and bring it on is what I say! I love all the different sights and smells that come with each and every season. My walks this last week or so have been filled with the beauty of nature. The trees are looking glorious, showering me with leaves in various shades of golden yellow, burnt orange and opulent red; and that soft mulch of fallen leaves under paw is just delicious – the sort of feeling that you love at the time but also makes you look forward to snuggling up next to the log burner once you are home…

Ralph reviews a grade II farmhouse in clutton

My spirits were further lifted by the property I had the pleasure of reviewing last week.  Charity Farm is a Grade II listed former farmhouse, part of which, my dad reliably informed me, dates back to the 17th century.  Wow is the best adjective I can think of to describe this unique family home.  As we arrived in Clutton and drove down the drive towards a beautiful part timber-framed house I thought wistfully of my fancy dress cupboard – I have a rather splendid Cavalier hat which I wore to a Roundheads and Cavaliers party a few years ago.  That would have been just the ticket to get into character for exploring such a stunning and historic house. 

Ralph reviews a grade II farmhouse in clutton outside view

I tumbled rather inelegantly out of the car in my eagerness to get started but once I had righted myself with a paw in each corner, I looked around and stood for a moment taking in the sight before me – a charming, characterful house which hinted at the delightful promise of plenty of nooks and crannies to explore. I was told that there are a couple of entrances into the house including one straight into the kitchen but I took the door that led me into the utility room – the perfect arrangement for an outdoorsy type of pug like myself to divest themselves of their welly-boots and raincoats.  I saw two doors leading off from the utility and, feeling rather like I was on the Crystal Maze, I chose a door and set off on my adventure. 

I found myself in a cosy snug complete with a serving hatch through to the utility room.  My mind started to fill with mischievous thoughts – a variation of table tennis through the hatch – now that could be fun on a rainy winter’s afternoon. Next stop was the breakfast kitchen and what a showstopping room this is.  I gazed up to see a high vaulted, beamed ceiling complete with two skylights which were bathing the room in gentle autumnal sunlight.  I soon spotted one of my favourite sights in the world – an Aga nestled into an exposed brick alcove.  A little spot just in front of the Aga would be the place to position myself on a regular basis, especially when a chicken happens to be roasting inside!  To the side of the kitchen there is an exposed staircase up to the first floor.  Despite the temptations it promised, I decided to exercise some patience and continue my explorations of the ground floor first.

Ralph reviews a grade II farmhouse in clutton kitchen

Next I found myself in a hallway off which I found a handy cloakroom and a garden room.  In here I couldn’t help but nod in appreciation.  This beautiful light room with views across the garden catered perfectly to every season – on a balmy summer’s day, with the bifolding doors open, the garden room would almost become part of the garden.  On a blustery winter’s day, with the log burner aglow, it would be the perfect place to hunker down and while away an afternoon. 

Ralph reviews a grade II farmhouse in clutton consevetory view

As I travelled deeper into the house I became aware I was now in the older part of the property and oh what a treat – the dining room just oozed historical atmosphere – the beamed walls and ceiling and the Inglenook fireplace with log burner was sublime.  Oh how I wished I had that cavalier hat with me, so atmospheric was the room that I almost felt I could hear Cavalier strategists planning their next move against the Roundheads in that very room.

Ralph reviews a grade II farmhouse in clutton dining room

There were two doors leading off from the dining room.  Taking the first one I found myself in an inner hallway which led to a study.  Once again this was a room full of period features and looking at the desk I truly expected to see a quill and wax seal – I was terribly surprised to see a laptop and wifi box instead!

Ralph reviews a grade II farmhouse in clutton the study view

The drawing room was my final stop on the ground floor and oh it was hard to prise myself out of there.  This charming, cosy and welcoming room is also evocative of times gone by with its beamed ceiling and walls and quaint period windows.  I saw a set of stairs to one side of the room and realised that this must be a second access to the first floor – how exciting – I would have an additional escape route should the Roundheads make their move!

Ralph reviews a grade II farmhouse in clutton the sitting room

Up the stairs I bounded and it is fair to say that the first floor accomodation charmed me as much as the ground floor did.  I found three bedrooms and two bathrooms all of which were utterly delightful with their sloping ceilings and beamed walls. 

Ralph reviews a grade II farmhouse in clutton sitting area

I realised that the third bedroom and second bathroom could be treated as an independent suite as the staircase I saw in the kitchen leads up to these rooms via a spacious landing.  I joyously bounded down the aforementioned staircase back into the kitchen and made my way outside.  I knew there was plenty to see outside and I was not disappointed.  Adjacent to the house is a self-contained annexe which is fully equipped with a kitchen and sitting room downstairs and a bedroom and bathroom upstairs – yes, you guessed it, the perfect place to squirrel away a noisy teenage pug!

Once outside again I sauntered down paths admiring the perfectly maintained lawns.  On my travels I also found a detached workshop (which used to be a piggery, I am reliably informed – gosh I bet they were noisy – no wonder they were situated a little way away from the house!) and another detached outbuilding.  Following the pathway from the garden it led me down to a gravelled area which could accommodate several cars (full-sized cars for humans and not just pug-mobiles).  This leads further on to a detached double garage and storeroom and then onto a tennis court – I’m not so keen on playing tennis – those rackets are incredibly difficult to manoeuvre when you are vertically challenged but I certainly see endless ball throwing and chasing opportunities on a tennis court – just imagine the speed I could get up on that surface! I had brought my exercise “pug-pumps” with me and I was very glad because the walk round the grounds definitely counted as my exercise for the day.  Together with a lovely paddock, Charity Farm sits in around six acres in garden and grounds.

Ralph reviews a grade II farmhouse in clutton garden view

Ralph reviews a grade II farmhouse in clutton

In short, it is easy to run out of superlatives to describe this lovely property – if you are looking for a period property that abounds with charm and character then it is simply perfect.  Please contact myself or one of my team on 01244 322322 or to arrange a viewing of Charity Farm.

Until next time

Ralph X

Ralph Reviews

Ralph reviews a detached modern family house in Tattenhall

I don’t know about you but the long summer evenings always inspire me to take up a new hobby.  In the midst of winter all I want to do is snuggle up by the fire but in summer, well something about the light evenings makes me want to explore new opportunities.  Last year it was tennis but the irresistible urge to run off with the balls had me thrown out of the local tennis club so this year I opted for a hobby with an all together different vibe.  Inspired… Read more

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