Barn conversion has fabulous views

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15 May 2017 11:40AM

MAGNIFICENT gardens surround Forge Cottage in Newton that are the pride and joy of owner Lynne Ions, who was responsible for their creation.

Hard work levelling the plot, building a wall to create a micro-climate and extensive planting of trees, shrubs and flowers has resulted in a stunning kaleidoscope of colour.

Lynne moved to Forge Cottage 18 years ago, attracted by the property’s seclusion, privacy and views, as well as its layout with A-frame ceilings and exposed beams.

“The views are absolutely lovely,” she said. “We mainly look south and south-west and when the trees are not in full leaf can see Hexham and the moors stretching for a considerable distance.

“After moving in we fully redecorated the entire home, gradually replaced bathroom suites and retiled all bathrooms. This was closely followed by removing a modern-style kitchen, as it was beginning to look somewhat tired, replacing it with what we have today which we felt was more sympathetic and in keeping with the character of Forge Cottage.”

The property was built in the 18th century and is a barn conversion forming part of a small group of similar homes. It has five bedrooms, two of them en-suite, dining, living and sitting rooms, a large breakfasting kitchen, study and utility room.

Outside is quadruple garaging, a greenhouse and the gardens. “The garages were built in 2012 with two double electric up-and-over doors, block paving to the front and a workshop area inside with toilet facilities,” said Lynne.

“In September 2014, the old double garage was converted into a multi-purpose room so it could be utilised as either a study, gym, TV room, storage room, playroom or teenage den/retreat.”

Before all of this took place, however, there was some serious work to do in the garden.

“We stabilised the cliff face to the north with a cribiform structure to protect our home nestling beside, replaced the standard larch-lap boundary fencing with a perimeter stone wall - which was an engineering feat in itself as work started just before extremely heavy snow – and levelled the garden throughout.

“This provided us with not only fantastic views but softened the prevailing winds and gave us a micro-climate all of its own. With help, the gardens on all sides of Forge Cottage were transformed to what they are today, containing one of my two favourite spots.

“This is an elevated patio area which looks directly over the main rear garden south and west and beyond the garden boundary wall. It’s in full sun from early morning to sunset and you can sit protected under a sun parasol in the heat of the day and enjoy the night-time spectacle of a navy-blue night sky brimming with stars even without the moon.

“On occasions, we have even had the privilege of experiencing the colourful spectacle of the aurora borealis as there is very little light pollution here. Favourite spot inside has to be the turquoise sitting room with the open fire, where you can view the garden and wildlife from the comfort of an armchair while listening to music.”

The gardens are an absolute credit to Lynne. She redesigned and replanted to take advantage of the views as well as to create a colourful planting combination. The emphasis was on encouraging wildlife into the garden and reflecting the internal room colour schemes.

She said: “Three ponds were created which were teeming with wildlife very quickly and this drew in all sorts of other wildlife, plus there are three vegetable plots which have given bumper crops over the years.”

Lynne is selling Forge Cottage as it is too big now that her family have left home.

“It deserves the laughter and happiness a family can bring to it,” she said. “It is my sincere wish that the new occupants experience as much enjoyment and laughter here as my family have had.”

Forge Cottage, Newton

5-bedroomed property £895,000

Andrew Coulson (01434) 600146

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