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Country setting close to town hits the right note
Published 18/08/14

THE name Remenham is thought to come from the old English words reoma and ham and means a homestead or an enclosure by the riverbank.

Remenham village is a small collection of buildings, principally St Nicholas’ Church and rectory, a village hall, Remenham Farm, the site of the former manor house and the former school. Parts of the moat of the original manor house remain. Sir Edmund Montfort owned it during the reigns of Edward IV and Richard III. A lane from the church provides public access to the river.

Remenham church dates back to the 13th century. A number of large houses are to be found in the area. Along Remenham Lane, which runs parallel to the river, Remenham Court (formerly Remenham Lodge) and Matson House (formerly Wilminster Park) command good views over the River Thames. On the eastern side of Remenham Lane is the site of the former Henley Cricket and Lawn Tennis Clubs.

The cricket ground may date back to the 18th century. In Emily Climenson’s Guide to Henley (published 1896), Henley Cricket Club played matches on Wednesdays and Saturdays from May to October. Membership of the cricket club cost 1 1s (1.05) per annum. The keeper of the ground at this time was George Eustace.

The Henley Town Cricket Club was formed in 1886 and played on land behind the Little Angel, owned by Brakspear’s Brewery. In 1896 annual membership was 10s (50p) and the club had almost 100 honorary and playing members. Upwards of 30 matches were played annually during the cricket season.

The current Henley Cricket Club plays on the same site.

The hamlet of Remenham Hill is situated 300 feet above the River Thames. Its former inn, the Five Horseshoes, is now a commercial property.

The steep road linking Remenham Hill to Henley was carved out of the chalk at the top of the hill and built up at the bottom. It is known as White Hill because of this.

The large country house called Remenham Place was a preparatory school for boys around the beginning of the 20th century.

Chancellors has a number of properties to choose from on Remenham Hill.

One detached property has been re-modelled by the current owner, Tony Stubbs and he claims it is probably one of the most eco-friendly houses in the area.

The substantial detached home of 2,711 sq ft has outstanding rural views and is set in a third of an acre and enjoys spectacular uninterrupted views over farmland and the Chilterns beyond.

When Mr Stubbs, who owns Toad Hall Garden Centre, bought the property five years ago his intention was to knock it down and start again. But he eventually decided to simply remodel the existing building which he has done with great success.

He said: “I installed solar panels which provide enough income to cover the cost of all utilities. I also put in lots of insulation so the house is amazingly warm in winter but cool in the summer.”

He added his favourite part of the house is the remodelled kitchen/conservatory which boasts a double-sided log-burning stove which extends into the living room, providing extra warmth and real cosiness to the room.

The eco-friendly home has a secure, gated entrance and a 26ft kitchen/breakfast room overlooking the gardens. The master bedroom with balcony offers stunning views while there are two further bedrooms with ensuite bathrooms.

Mr Stubbs added: “When I moved here it was with the view to retire but I still work seven days a week.

“My sons are running the business now and my intention is that this will be my last move.”

He added that the Rewind Festival poses no issues with living so close.

“You can hear the music in the distance but I have never been.

“I gave up going to festivals after Bob Dylan and Jimi Hendrix on the Isle of Wight!”

The property is available through Chancellors for a guide price of 950,000. For more details, call (01491) 571157.

Piers Burnell bought his property two years ago, recognising the potential to upgrade it to provide a fantastic family home.

Arranged over three floors, the Grade II listed Regency-style home retains many original features and offers flexible accommodation.

He said: “I liked the fact that it was 200 years old and had a lot of character. It has a country feel about it yet you’re just minutes from town.”

Mr Burnell, a coroner’s officer, installed new wooden floors throughout and had intended to replace the kitchen and bathroom. But having decided to move, it provides the option for the new owners to put their own mark on the property.

“It is a great location — I can be in London in 35 minutes, the Flower Pot is a wonderful country inn and you are so close to Henley.”

Mr Burnell had a great family connection to the area which influenced his decision to move there.

He explained: “We have a strong rowing tradition and family history in the area — my grandparents are buried at Remenham Church.”

That connection with the area has been strengthened still further as Mr Burnell is involved with the Henley Amateur Operatic and Dramatic Society (HAODS) and charity Millie’s Dream so he is planning on staying in the area.

The property is just 1.5 miles to Henley railway station and moments from beautiful countryside walks. It features a kitchen with breakfast room adjacent and three further reception rooms. There is a study, four bedrooms, two bathrooms, a utility area and separate storage areas. There are gardens to the front and rear of the property, a garage and driveway parking accessed from the quiet lane.

The property is available through Chancellors for a guide price of 695,000. For more details, call (01491) 571157

A three-bedroom detached family home is on the market for the first time since it was bought in 1973, offering a west-facing rear garden and views over fields across the lane with access to countryside walks.

Roger Pickering is selling the property following the death of his father last year at the age of 88. Having lived there from the age of 17 with his sister who was then 14 and their parents, it holds a lot of happy memories but the siblings decided to sell the property, bringing to a close one chapter of their lives while being able to look back fondly at their time there.

The couple moved there from the north of the country after Mr Pickering (senior) was promoted with his job working for Hoover. His son said: “Prices were going crazy at the time — there was lots of gazumping and they lost a number of houses. This one was up for auction on Christmas Eve and my father was the only person there. Although his bid did not reach the reserve price, he was able to negotiate with the auctineers and managed to secure the home as an early Christmas present for the family — a big relief for everyone.”

Designed by a French architect the property is light and bright and offers lots of potential. A large integral garage could be converted, subject to planning permission, to offer a fantastic open-plan kitchen/living space.

The couple maintained the property well over the years, redecorating and upgrading the kitchen and bathroom. They also extended what was a small garden, buying an additional plot of land and while it is still not huge, it offers good secluded outside space.

It also lends itself to a traditional or more contemporary decor. When Mr Pickering lifted the carpets they discovered the original floorboards had never been walked on so esposed them and had they polished to be a stunning feature of the property.

The L-shaped sitting/dining room has a working fireplace and the fitted kitchen is complemented by a utility room. There is also a ground floor cloakroom. The master bedroom has an ensuite bathroom while there are two further bedrooms and a family bathroom. Outside there is driveway parking and a 20ft by 14ft garage.

Mr Pickering concluded: “We have great memories of running about all day and sailing in a dinghy. The location is perfect — for the commuter to London it avoids all the hassle of queuing through Henley and the catchment school of Wargrave Piggott has an ‘outstanding’ Ofsted report — for a family looking for a lovely home it could be perfect.”

The property is available through Chancellors with no onward chain for a guide price of 650,000. For more details, call (01491) 571157.

Ballards is offering a charming four-bedroom attached cottage for sale in a stunning tucked away spot off Remenham Hill.

Tim Caunter bought Willow Corner in 1982. He said: “Since then I have raised two children in the beautiful and tranquil surroundings that the enviable position affords. The girls Lauren and Bethany are grown up now and away with lives of their own, however both girls still hold a special place in their hearts for the house they spent all of their childhood in.”

Willow Corner got its name from the Willow tree at the corner of the property.

Mr Caunter added: “The property was much smaller when I purchased it and consisted of not much more than the original stables, of which the floors of which can still be seen under the oak flooring in the current dining and living room. The house has grown with the family and is now a comfortable four-bedroom family home yet still manages to retain the cosy feeling of the original smaller property.”

Willow Corner is a brilliant family home with the location and outdoor space being the two major attractions. With two-and-a-half acres of outdoor space a mixture of both garden and woodland and access to the public footpath leading directly to the River Thames and beyond, it could not be more perfect — however the tranquility and peace are not an indication of remoteness, exactly the opposite — the road at the end of the drive leads directly into Henley in less than a mile.

“The location was actually what attracted me to the house in the first place. Working in leisure management at the time, which I did for 30 years finally selling the company in 2003. I now run a VC company and can work from any location.”

The house itself holds many character features with two open fire places and a large kitchen with an Aga. In the garden there is an original holding well used to water the horses way back when the house was a functioning stable block.

With the house being such a central location over the years the family has enjoyed many of the events Henley has to offer from the regatta and festival to the REWIND Festival which they admit to attending in a bid to recapture their youth.

Mr Caunter said: “On the years we did not attend the REWIND Festival we have sat in our peaceful surroundings enjoying a glass or two and listened to the distant music floating up the valley to us. As another bonus to our location we have opened our doors to a few boat crews over the years who were all blown away by the location.”

Mr Caunter concluded: “Leaving Willow Corner has not been an easy decision to make however with both girls grown and flown the nest it is time to move on to pastures new, however I would not rule out a return to Remenham.”

The property overlooks its delightful gardens and adjoining woodland of approximately 2.5 acres in total. The accommodation retains many original features and comprises a covered entrance porch, entrance hall, utility room, inner hall with stable door leading to a courtyard garden and a dual aspect sitting room with stripped oak floor, brick fireplace with wood-burning stove and French doors leading to a decked terrace and gardens.

There is a dining room with stripped oak floor, a fireplace with wooden mantle, tiled slips and hearth and stairs leading to the first floor landing while the family room also has stripped oak floor and a second staircase leading to a further first floor landing.

The kitchen/breakfast room has a large feature window, range of wood units, a butler sink, ‘AGA’ central island, a tiled floor and larder cupboard with space for a fridge.

There is a bathroom with ‘Jacuzzi’ bath and shower while the first floor landing from the family room leads to the fourth bedroom and bedroom two.

Bedroom four is dual aspect with a feature vaulted dormer window with two built-in single wardrobes and further eaves storage.

Bedroom two also has a feature vaulted dormer window, built in wardrobe and an en-suite shower room with access leading to the further first floor landing. This landing has access to the master bedroom, shower room and bedroom three.

Bedroom three has a feature floor to ceiling vaulted dormer window, wood strip floor and eaves storage, the master bedroom has twin windows a walk-in wardrobe and steps up to a dressing room/study area with wood strip floor.

Outside the approach to the house is over a single track leading to a parking area to the front of the property with a further covered parking area to the side. To the front is an attractive garden accessed from the hall and sitting room. To the eastern boundary is a large area of garden surrounded by woodland.

The property is available through Ballards for a guide price of 950,000. For more details call (01491) 411055.

Published 18/08/14

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