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Features > Summer Homes > Country Homes > Spirit of the Countryside
RS127: Spirit of the Countryside
Photos: Robert Sanderson / Narratives
Text & Styling: Maggie Colvin / Narratives

A lovely location on the edge of Sussex Downs surrounded by meadows, persuaded Louise and Mathew Duke to buy a nineteenth century romantic tumbledown cottage in need of new life. With roses cascading over its pretty facade, their home is the epitome of the romantic English cottage famously featured on old fashioned post cards.
‘When we first set eyes on it, we were totally smitten,’ Louise admits, ‘especially because of its remote rural location.’ On the edge of a friendly South Downs village, with a pond and a pub, it was also close to Chichester where their twins, Will and Emily attend school. ‘Its location was the clincher,’ she continues, ‘but the big challenge was its size, just two up and to down with one bathroom on the ground floor next to a tiny kitchen. There was also a basement area but that was also tiny and full of toads.’ Louise believes the size of the property would have put off many potential buyers, adding, ‘luckily Mathew has an amazing gift for imagining how a house could extend. Running his own design and build company has given him a lot of experience. I knew somehow he would see a way to transform the property into a decent size.’

19th Century, Period Homes, Rural, Country Homes, Cottage, Family Homes, Garden, Painted Furniture, Pastels, Romantic, Summer, Sussex Downs, Village
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