This month we asked Caroline & Charles if they would open up their home to our blog readers. Caroline & Charles opted to use our Holmfirth estate agency to market their property for sale when the big decision was made to re-locate from Huddersfield. Laurel Cottage is situated in Highburton, a very desireable location wihtin Huddersfield not far from our Holmfirth estate agency offices.
Why did you buy this house, what were its main draws?
We bought Laurel Cottage in June 2008 when we returned from working abroad. We were attracted to its commanding position in the village and the fact that it had planning approval in place for a rear extension to the property. We loved Laurel Cottage as it was with its amazing views, fabulous high ceilings, large rooms and original doors and windows, but it was ripe for renovation and that is what we were looking for.
When was the house built, do you know anything about its history?
The house was built in 1885. Soon after moving in I did a lot of research into the history of the property. I have uncovered a complete history from the original owner of the land and the family that had the property built right up to the present day. I have deeds, documents and photographs which provide a fascinating insight into the house and its history. I would be happy to share this with the eventual buyer.
Which part of the house is your favourite space and why?
In summer my favourite place is the external sun deck at the back of the house. South West facing and with panoramic views it catches the sun until sunset and is an ideal place to relax and spend time with family and friends. In winter my favourite place is the living room. With the log fire lit and the curtains closed it is a warm and cosy place to curl up on a cold winters day.
What are your favourite features of the house?
This is hard to answer as there are so many. Laurel Cottage is so light inside, with large windows on every side letting sunshine and light flood in whatever the weather. The very high ceilings and dual aspect rooms help of course, but the light inside is amazing. Whichever way you look, there is another lovely countryside view presenting itself.
What will you miss the most about the house when the property sells?
From the moment I first entered Laurel Cottage I felt at home. The owners before us had lived here for over 30 years and loved the house. I know why. If Laurel Cottage likes you you will feel immediately like you have come home. With our imminent move I need to find that feeling again and I know we will but we will truly miss Laurel Cottage.
What works have you completed at the property?
We had always planned to renovate and extend Laurel Cottage to make the most of its position in Highburton Village. Soon after moving in we started at the top of the house (the roof) and began a full renovation project. I am a project manager and interior designer so used this experience to manage the whole project. We used local highly skilled tradesmen to make the most of the outstanding features of the property and renovated all of the house except the kitchen and dining area. We kept all of the original features of the house but incorporated these with modern touches and state of the art heating, lighting and sound. We then began the extension project. We used local company Abode builders and worked closely with them and our architect to design a sensitive but modern addition to the house. It wasn’t an easy project but with the professionalism of Abode and my experience with many other builds we got there. The results are plain to see. We now have a lovely combination of beautiful old Laurel Cottage with its high ceilings and large windows with a modern and spacious open plan living area with bifold doors to a landscaped multi level garden with panoramic views.
What can you tell us about the garden since this area of any home is becoming more and more important to buyers since Covid?
I am a keen (but amateur) gardener and I do love the garden at Laurel Cottage. It was originally a large orchard, my research and old photographs show this. The soil is therefore excellent and everything seems to thrive here. There were quite a few original large trees here when we first moved in but we removed some of these to maximise the fabulous views. After the extension was completed we spent many months improving the borders and completing the patios and walls that you can now see. There are thousands of spring bulbs to delight, early summer perennials in an array of colours and then a late summer green and burgundy mature border display. The Magnolia tree in the centre of the garden was planted by the previous owner (Jean). It was her retirement gift from work so must be in the region of 30 years old. It flowers in April and August and is a showstopper in a good year. The garden at Laurel Cottage, particularly now with the raised deck, is a delight to spend time in to marvel at the views, soak up the sunshine and watch the abundant bird life while sipping a glass of your favourite tipple.
For the full property details and description of this unique home please view the advert description: Highburton, Huddersfield, 3 bedroom, Detached House (applegateproperties.co.uk)