Ralph reviews commercial and residential property in Malpas
In Cheshire we are lucky to have so many picturesque villages on our doorstep and I always consider Malpas as one of the most charming. The last few months have seen a resurgence in my passion for local history (I happen to believe that I am descended from a distinguished line of Royal lap dogs and I am always keen to discover more about how my ancestors may have lived). Many a long summer evening has been whiled away scouring the local history books and it was on one such evening that I stumbled across some fascinating facts about Malpas’ heritage. How thrilling is it to discover that, in the heart of the village, sits the original Norman motte and bailey castle. This conjures up images of majestic knights sat astride white chargers with their faithful hounds (pugs) by their side along with a myriad of other, equally romanticized, images.
So you can imagine my delight when I saw in the diary that I was scheduled to visit Malpas for my latest Ralph’s Review. With a joyous spring in my step and a devil-may-care shake of my head I set off with my Dad last week to head to this enclave of South Cheshire paradise. We arrived in the centre of the village and dad directed my gaze towards a building perfectly situated amidst the ebb and flow of village life. I stained my neck and gazed up at the wonderful Edwardian façade of the three storey building in front of me. It was clear from the outset that this property is as versatile as it is lovely. With its double fronted glazed façade it clearly allows for commercial use as well as residential. After looking at dad with a quizzical expression on my face he confirmed that Holly House used to be the village pharmacy no less.
As I trotted towards the property with a purposeful step I realised that it boasts two front doors – one leads into the commercial side of the property but I decided to explore the residential side first so I veered off towards the door set off to the right of the building. Once through the entrance hall I found myself in an inner hallway that simply oozed Edwardian charm – my claws clattered delightfully on the beautiful minton tiled floor and I immediately found myself falling under Holly House’s spell. A door to my right beckoned me through and beyond it I found a sitting room filled with atmospheric charm. Both the sitting room and the cosy snug which I found behind it, feature beautiful period style fireplaces, and, on the cold mid-summer’s day that it was (yes it is the Great British Summertime in full swing) I was almost tempted to light a fire and settle in for 40 winks. However, I knew that this fabulous property had so much more to show me and so onwards I forged – ever the intrepid explorer!
Behind the snug I found the kitchen, scullery, cloakroom and utility room. Having watched a box set of Grand Designs recently I was full of ideas about how one could modernise the space. I’m picturing centre islands and glazed pantry units with all my bonios and wainwrights treats gloriously on show – on second thoughts that could be dangerous for my waistline!
Back to the hallway I went and bounded up the stairs to the first floor. There I found an exquisite drawing room with an Edwardian style fireplace – very “Lark Rise to Candleford”, a room which is currently used as a study but could equally well serve as a bedroom and a further bedroom and family bathroom.
I had spied another set of stairs on the landing which led tantilisingly upwards and so up I went to explore the second floor. There I found a further three bedrooms, one with an en suite bathroom and another family bathroom. Wow, I thought to myself, the second floor could be rather like a self-contained “pup apartment” for all your youngsters and it even avoids the usual fight for the bathroom!
Having been thoroughly impressed by the family accommodation Holly House has to offer I decided it was time to cast my eye over the commercial side. Now first and foremost I have to say that I found the façade of the premises so charming and atmospheric that I already had visions of an old fashioned sweet shop or maybe a perfumerie – yes eau de stale ditchwater or colonia de seaweed would be such a fragrant addition to Malpas high street. Pushing such thoughts aside (although I really do love eau de ditchwater and decided to make a detour to one of my favourite, very fragrant ditches on the way back to the office) I afforded the shop my full attention and noted with appreciation the size of the premises – a good sized main room, a first floor room, a back room, cloakroom and cellars.
Oh and whilst on the subject of cellars, the house also has a series of cellar rooms below it. With the scale of this property, I wouldn’t be at all surprised if one might get a little lost, especially a vertically challenged little pug like myself (this is why I always carry a compass tucked into my harness – you just never know when you might need it)
Outside I found a courtyard garden complete with off road parking for numerous cars and a detached former coachhouse with no less than two garages and two additional rooms. I had visions of this being converted into my local history archive – a cosy leather sofa, rugs on the floor and shelves filled to overflowing with my historical research – a scene reminiscent of professor Dumbledore’s office in Harry Potter….
Enough of my ramblings, suffice to say that Holly House is an exceptional property which offers both commercial and residential opportunities in abundance. If you see as many possibilities as I do, please call myself or one of my team on 01244 322322 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange a viewing.
Until next time