If one is looking for a historic Wealden building that has provided some of the most attractive and practical homes in our corner of the world it wouldn’t be the oast but a considerably more ancient contender – the medieval hall house. It was the lure of such an ancient building steeped in history that first drew Charlotte Steadman and her husband Andrew to Lark Hall.

TEST The kitchen/breakfast room was extended to create a truly huge vaulted, beamed space

The kitchen/breakfast room was extended to create a truly huge vaulted, beamed space

TEST Quercus Construction then built the Shaker units and the huge block oak-topped central island

Quercus Construction built the Shaker units and the huge block oak-topped central island

TEST Steps from the kitchen lead down into the bright and airy breakfast room

Steps from the kitchen lead down into the bright and airy breakfast room

TEST A nice touch beneath it is a space-age double wine cooler next to drawers made from old wine cases

A nice touch beneath it is a space-age double wine cooler next to drawers made from old wine cases

TEST The heavily beamed dining room across the hall from the kitchen now has a distinctly baronial feel

The heavily beamed dining room across the hall from the kitchen now has a distinctly baronial feel

TEST Centrepiece of the family room is a French grey table surrounded by elegant Louis-style armchairs and a deep brown leather chair and sofa

Centrepiece of the family room is a French grey table surrounded by elegant Louis-style armchairs and a deep brown leather chair and sofa

TEST The springbok skin rug was bought in South Africa on their honeymoon

The springbok skin rug was bought in South Africa on their honeymoon

TEST The master bedroom is stunning with star billing going to a vast and magnificent four posterThe master bedroom is stunning with star billing going to a vast and magnificent four poster

The master bedroom is stunning with star billing going to a vast and magnificent four poster

TEST “The previous owner asked if we’d like to buy the bed, which with all the canopy had originally cost £13,000,” says Charlotte. “It was lovely but out of our budget so we had to say no. So we were pleasantly surprised to find it still here when we moved in.”

“The previous owner asked if we’d like to buy the bed, which with all the canopy had originally cost £13,000,” says Charlotte. “It was lovely but out of our budget so we had to say no. So we were pleasantly surprised to find it still here when we moved in.”

TEST Charlotte and Andrew remodelled their en suite to provide both a romantic bathroom, with a rolltop bath, and a double-shower room

Charlotte and Andrew remodelled their en suite to provide both a romantic bathroom, with a rolltop bath, and a double-shower room

TEST The elegant basin on a former Italian telephone table from La Belle Étoffe in Frome

The elegant basin on a former Italian telephone table from La Belle Étoffe in Frome

TEST The sleigh bed was bare wood but has been painted white by Charlotte and the dressing table next to it is the base of an old Singer sewing machine

The sleigh bed was bare wood but has been painted white by Charlotte and the dressing table next to it is the base of an old Singer sewing machine

TEST The guest bedroom along with daughters Grace and Ella’s rooms all feature curtains made by Charlotte from Laura Ashley fabric

The guest bedroom along with daughters Grace and Ella’s rooms all feature curtains made by Charlotte from Laura Ashley fabric

TEST “I picked up some made-to-measure curtains at a great price on sale and then took them apart and reused the fabric to make thick interlined, blackout pinch pleat versions for the girl’s bedrooms.”

“I picked up some made-to-measure curtains at a great price on sale and then took them apart and reused the fabric to make thick interlined, blackout pinch pleat versions for the girl’s bedrooms.”

TEST Charlotte and Andrew worked with architect Roger Howells and Hazelwood Building Contractors to remodel the cramped ground floor entrance to create a large bright hallway

Charlotte and Andrew worked with architect Roger Howells and Hazelwood Building Contractors to remodel the cramped ground floor entrance to create a large bright hallway

  • words:
  • pictures: David Merewether
  • styling: Lucy Fleming

Small house,big ideas

Architect Sophie and civil engineer Sarah certainly brought their work home with them when they took on the tricky extension of their own Victorian end-of-terrace. Making use of every centimetre of space possible, they designed side and rear extensions which...

Joined Up Thinking

Not shy of a serious challenge, Emma and Terry Hazelwood undertook a complicated listed barn conversion, successfully blending old and new to create a stunning family home House renovation, like many other adventures, is not for the faint-hearted, requiring not...

A Place in the Country

A true labour of love, Ian and Penny Ledger have tirelessly renovated their idyllic farmstead in Mayfield to be able share a slice of their beautiful, rural seclusion with groups who hire their multi-award winning retreat venue Tucked away in...