Photographs Bruce Hemming
Millie Fossett was staying with friends in Essex when she saw a house nearby for sale. She was curious and went to have a look and fell instantly in love with it. There and then, she decided to sell her south London house and relocate to this delightful rural village in the Colne Valley. ‘My friends thought I was quite mad,’ she says, ‘especially as I didn’t look at any other properties.’
The Grade II house, dates to the mid-1600s with 18th and 19th century additions. Millie and her team of builders set to work restoring the property, which took eight months of solid hard work. New wiring, pipework and a heating system were installed as well as updated the bathrooms. The kitchen was refitted, floors relaid, an Everhot oven installed and a window removed and replaced with glazed doors giving access to the garden.
Outside the garden has been totally redesigned with areas left to naturalise, raised veg beds added, gravel paths laid and the planting of a pretty lime walk.