Sally and Rob yearned for a change of scenery, making the decision to move from bustling city to tranquil countryside. After a two year search, they finally found their dream home near Rye and embarked on a considerable renovation which would see them start their own farm.

TEST The study offers the family a more formal second drawing room, perfect to reatreat to in the evening. The walls are painted in Farrow & Ball Downpipe and elegant little half basket chandeliers found on eBay illuminate the room

The study offers the family a more formal second drawing room, perfect to reatreat to in the evening. The walls are painted in Farrow & Ball Downpipe and elegant little half basket chandeliers found on eBay illuminate the room

TEST The heavily beamed 16th century drawing room is home to a huge inglenook, complete with bread oven, that extends two thirds of the length of the room

The heavily beamed 16th century drawing room is home to a huge inglenook, complete with bread oven, that extends two thirds of the length of the room

TEST A secret stair behind a door next to the fireplace leads down into the study

A secret stair behind a door next to the fireplace leads down into the study

TEST A corner of the dining room which lies across the hall

A corner of the dining room which lies across the hall

TEST The spacious dining room was originally two rooms where the older and younger parts of the house met

The spacious dining room was originally two rooms where the older and younger parts of the house met

TEST The couple commissioned portraits of their children, Zack and Aggy, from Brede-based artist Luke Hannam

The couple commissioned portraits of their children, Zack and Aggy, from Brede-based artist Luke Hannam

TEST Next to the dining room, Sally’s shaker style kitchen, topped with Carrara marble worksurfaces, was made by deVOL Kitchens in Loughborough

Next to the dining room, Sally’s shaker style kitchen, topped with Carrara marble worksurfaces, was made by deVOL Kitchens in Loughborough

TEST Sally and Rob created the double-aspect master bedroom and en suite from two original rooms. The walls are in F&B Oval Room Blue and the dark blue floral blinds are from House of Hackney. A limited edition print of Marilyn Monroe by Bert Stern and a delicate limited edition Tracey Emin line drawing of Kate Moss are hung on the walls

Sally and Rob created the double-aspect master bedroom and en suite from two original rooms. The walls are in F&B Oval Room Blue and the dark blue floral blinds are from House of Hackney. A limited edition print of Marilyn Monroe by Bert Stern and a delicate limited edition Tracey Emin line drawing of Kate Moss are hung on the walls

TEST Beside the bed hang pendant lamps from Lee Broom

Beside the bed hang pendant lamps from Lee Broom

TEST Sally has broken with the traditional style of the rest of the house by installing a contemporary en suite shower room with floor to ceiling grey marble and lacquered black units.

Sally has broken with the traditional style of the rest of the house by installing a contemporary en suite shower room with floor to ceiling grey marble and lacquered black units

TEST A painted cabinet nestles into the original fireplace in the family bathroom

A painted cabinet nestles into the original fireplace in the family bathroom

TEST the butterfly print above the bath adds a playful and colourful touch to the otherwise pale interior

The butterfly print above the bath adds a playful and colourful touch to the otherwise pale interior

TEST Sally and Rob use one of the upstairs rooms as a dressing room, leaving their bedroom uncluttered and wardrobe-free

Sally and Rob use one of the upstairs rooms as a dressing room, leaving their bedroom uncluttered and wardrobe-free

TEST A cosy guest bedroom enjoys privacy up on the top floor of the house

A cosy guest bedroom enjoys privacy up on the top floor of the house

TEST Zack and Aggy let their creativity run wild in their playfully styled bedrooms

Zack and Aggy let their creativity run wild in their playfully styled bedrooms

TEST The utility room was in a pretty sorry state when the couple first moved in. It now serves as a storage space for preserves and other perishable kitchen items

The utility room was in a pretty sorry state when the couple first moved in. It now serves as a storage space for preserves and other perishable kitchen items

TEST Sally and Rob have turned their six acres into an increasingly productive farm which includes rare breed pigs and a herd of Dexter cattle

Sally and Rob have turned their six acres into an increasingly productive farm which includes rare breed pigs

TEST Dexter cattle enjoying the grass

Dexter cattle enjoying the grass

  • 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...