Looking back across the decades spent at Old Cottage, the current owner has nothing but fond memories. His mother bought the beautiful property, which is believed to be the oldest house in the village of Taplow, some 50 years ago and he spent his childhood playing with his friends and enjoying the garden. "My mother was first drawn to the house back in 1965 because she loved the location," he says. "It was a lovely old village which was very quiet and yet it was also within easy reach of London and the airports. The house did need a lot of work but she liked its character and sense of history."
Once a small farmhouse and quite possibly originally thatched, Old Cottage is thought to be approximately 400 years old. "At one stage in its history it was two cottages," he explains. "My mother researched the history of the house extensively." Indeed, she discovered that in 1871 the large chestnut tree beside the garage was where village Wesleyans would preach; they later purchased a piece of land from Old Cottage for the creation of a chapel, which is no longer in existence. The house was later owned by the Pole-Carew family, with Lady Beatrice moving in during the second world war. "There are still many character features here, from the original beams and inglenook fireplace to a metal fire insurance plaque, which was removed from the wall and now hangs in the entrance hall."
The detached property, which was completely renovated and extended by his mother, offers good reception space, and flows easily from room to room. It opens into the dining hall, which in turn gives on to the kitchen to the right; this has a door on to the back garden. To the left of the dining hall is the family room, with the inglenook fireplace as its focal point. Beyond this is the formal drawing room and then one of the family bathrooms. "My mother loved the drawing room - this was the main room that people spent their time in whenever they visited," he says. "The layout of the ground floor as a whole, however, made the house very easy to live in."
All three bedrooms are double in size and are located on the first floor. One staircase leads up to a large landing giving on to two bedrooms and the second family bathroom. Another staircase leads up to the third bedroom. "The master bedroom looks out over the village and the church spire: the position of the house at the top of a hill gives it these attractive views."
The village of Taplow is known for its traditional charm. "My mother loved the village and was a very active member of the community, including the church and parish council," he says. "She had a busy social life and there were always lots of local events going on. She enjoyed entertaining at the house too and often organised social occasions here. This was always a great house for family gatherings and parties, as well as events with people from the village."
OUT AND ABOUT
"Although Old Cottage offers great privacy," he continues, "it is within reach of good schools, towns and road connections, as well as stations, with regular trains to London's Paddington." Both the A4 and the M4 motorway are just a 5-10 minute drive away and Heathrow Airport is only a 20-minute drive from the house. The property is well situated for a variety of places to visit, including Windsor Castle, Legoland and Henley. Nearby Dorney Lake is also worth a visit: this is a rowing and flat-water canoeing centre which is set in a spectacular 450-acre parkland. The site hosted the rowing and kayak events during the Olympic and Paralympic Games in 2012 and is recognised as one of the finest world rowing and flat-water canoeing venues in the world. "My mother always enjoyed walking in the area and my main memories of growing up here are also of having the freedom to be out and about," he recalls. "I enjoyed cycling with friends, playing football in the garden and living in such a comfortable and historic house."
Setting The Scene
Old Cottage is set in about an acre of grounds. It has level, mature gardens, with lots of lawn and plenty of places to sit out. There is also an extremely convenient detached double garage.
Within Easy Reach
Crossrail will be coming to Taplow at the end of 2019. This will allow a shorter journey time of just 28 minutes into Bond Street, London. The property is extremely well-connected with the M4, M25 and M40 and within a short drive of all London airports. Heathrow is approximately a 25 minute drive away. Taplow Station is approximately a 15 minute walk or 3 minute drive away. There are fast and frequent trains from here, as well as Burnham, Maidenhead and Slough, into London Paddington.
What Is Nearby
Old Cottage sits in the picturesque village of Taplow. Historical landmarks, countryside walks and pubs with locally-sourced cuisine can be found nearby. The prime Thames villages nearby are awash with superb restaurants. Heston Blumenthal's Fat Duck and the legendary Waterside Inn at Bray, owned by the Roux brothers, are close by. National Trust's Cliveden is a short drive away. Taplow Cricket Club and the excellent Huntswood Golf Club are also not far away. Buckinghamshire is renowned for its traditional state grammar schools and there are several state and private schools within easy reach.
For those with satellite navigation the postcode is: SL6 0EX