Terri Crosby knows a thing or two about high-end interior design. She helps kit out superyachts for billionaires who demand the best of everything. So when she bought a holiday let in Wensleydale, she decided to make it a deluxe model.
Now based in Northumberland, where she runs her business, GLuxe Interiors, she used to live in Middleham and first spotted the old station house in Wensley while out walking.
“I thought it was lovely and so when it came up for sale three years later I knew where it was immediately,” says Terri, who was looking for a holiday let.
“It was over my budget but I made an offer and a year later the owners accepted it. I was thrilled because nothing else I saw could live up to it.”
The house, where the stationmaster once lived, and the adjoining waiting rooms had been sold off by the railway company and was a family home.
While most people would have been content with a simple refresh of the property, Terri opted for a major transformation that included reconfiguring the space and giving it a glamorous new look.
“I’m used to doing projects like this, so it didn’t faze me at all. It made sense to redo everything because I wanted to create a very high-end holiday property,” she says.
“I could see a gap in the market for that kind of luxury. I knew exactly the kind of people I wanted to attract and what they like, so I went overboard on everything and now it’s better than a five-star hotel.”
Terri chose Staley Stonework in Richmond as the main contractor and also employed a project manager.
The work began with moving the steep staircase and building a new one in what was the kitchen. The waiting rooms attached to the house had been used as a dining room and a utility area, but Terri turned them into a ground-floor twin bedroom and bathroom.
What was an old side extension housing a utility area and cloakroom was demolished and rebuilt. It is now a sensational open-plan living space and kitchen, and is full of natural light thanks to large areas of glazing, including rooflights and bi-fold doors on to a new terrace.
“Fortunately, the house isn’t in a conservation area and it’s not listed, so getting planning permission for all the work we wanted to do wasn’t a problem,” says Terri, who adds: “Glazing the end of the extension was really important to me because I had to get the light and garden views into that space. Bringing the outside in is what really gives it the wow factor.”
The kitchen cabinets are from Howdens topped with Silestone, and the industrial lights above are from Andy Thornton’s in Greetland. There’s every possible mod con from a Smeg range cooker and induction hob to a warming drawer and two wine fridges. The eating, dining and sitting areas all feature fabric-backed wallpaper from Tektura.
It’s a wall treatment that Terri is fond of, although her favourite wallpaper is in the downstairs bedroom. “It looks like silk and is a new digital print designed by Christian Fischbacher,” she says.
The only room left untouched by a sledgehammer was the original sitting room, which is now a cosy snug. Its focal point is a fireplace that was upcycled from the old waiting room.
“The surveyor told me it was special but it was in a terrible state and the builders told me to dump it. I didn’t because I really wanted to save something from the original house and so I had it restored,” says Terri, who shopped for accessories and kitchenware in her two favourite Leyburn shops: Serendipity and House and Home.
Upstairs, she got rid of the third bedroom and redesigned the first floor to make a spacious, galleried landing, which doubles as a reading area, and two sumptuous bedroom suites.
The beds are ones that she uses in her own home and in footballers’ homes that she has fitted out in the North-East.
“Working in top-end homes and on the superyachts I know what a discerning clientele expects, so I am used to paying attention to detail. I also used the finest towels and the best thread count bedding from Yves Delorme, and I also have new Condé Nast magazines delivered to the house every month,” says Terri.
The bathrooms are stocked with an Elemis goody bag and even the bins have a mother of pearl inlay.
State-of-the-art technology was high on the list of must-haves, so there’s a Geneva surround sound music system in the kitchen, along with outdoor Bluetooth speakers, and the bedrooms have wireless mobile phone chargers and all the TVs come with Sky Q.
Outside, a new picket fence runs up to the edge of the railway platform, the gardens were re-landscaped and two stone terraces laid.
The new summer house is home to a water cooler and ice machine and there’s a hot tub.
Terri also created an outdoor room with 6ft-high faux hedging and sofas from Barker & Stonehouse. It is picture perfect by day and even more enchanting at night thanks to outdoor lighting and an idea Terri got from the Stobo Castle spa in Scotland.
“Stobo Castle has a pergola strung with a netting of starry lights over the hot tub, so I copied that here and it’s magical,” says Terri, who spent double her original budget on redesigning the property.
“It became a passion and I knew that it would be worth it. It’s just right for the people I am aiming at and I plan to keep the house long term. I love it.”
Do you love imagining what your dream home would look like? Whether It’s luxury you’re after, or something a little more left field, join our Dream Homes Facebook group for inspiration.
* Station House in Wensley, near Leyburn, is a holiday let with Gorgeous Cottages, www.gorgeouscottages.com
Builders, Staley Stonework, Richmond, www.staleystonework.co.uk
Prices Paving, Snape, www.pricespaving.co.uk
Sofas and outdoor furniture, Barker & Stonehouse, www.barkerandstonehouse.co.uk
Serendipity, Leyburn, www.serendipityinteriors.co.uk
House & Home, Leyburn, www.forhouseandhome.co.uk
Tektura wallcoverings, www.tektura.com
Andy Thornton, reclamation and vintage-style furniture, www.andythornton.com