Hammonds House, Middleham
Taking the scenic route home from a job in Newcastle led to Daniel Thomas losing his heart to Middleham.
Driving through the historic market town stirred memories of a childhood visit to the castle and after stopping for refreshments he was captivated and vowed to make a return trip.
“I came back and decided I’d like a home here. It is such a lovely place. It has a castle, a cricket ground, a shop, peace and quiet, pubs and restaurants and the racehorses,” says Daniel.
Middleham is home to a number of racing stables and watching the thoroughbreds walk up through the town to the nearby gallops is a big attraction for tourists.
Daniel found Hammonds House after hearing that the owner was keen to sell. “I knocked on her door and made an offer there and then. This is one of the most secluded and private properties you could wish for. A real sanctuary from the outside world,” he says.
The building is thought to have been stables for an old coaching inn and was originally converted into a home by the actor Richard Franklin, who played Captain Yates in Dr Who. By the time Daniel bought it in 2014, the interior was dated and dark.
He hired a heritage builder along with Kevin and Janet Stevens, who run the Red House salvage and vintage store in Bedale. The couple are trained architects with Janet specialising in design and Kevin chief salvage hunter and a gifted joiner.
“They were fantastic. We completely reconfigured the space and put in some extra windows to make it much lighter. It has made an enormous difference,” says Daniel.
The link detached home now has a boot room with a utility cupboard, a shower room and a large open-plan living space with a kitchen and full-height glazed window to the front plus French doors to the rear. The room is warmed by a wood-burning stove. The ground floor also has a separate sitting room/second bedroom with open fire. On the first floor, there is a large bedroom with vaulted ceiling, a dressing room and a bathroom. Outside, there is a parking space, a courtyard garden and a side garden with a paved patio.
Daniel is selling as he now spends much of his time working away. “I will miss it. It offers a lovely lifestyle,” he says.
Contact Dacre Son and Hartley, tel: 01765 605151, www.dacres.co.uk