Woodbank, Harden, Bingley
This grade II listed detached house is on the edge of Harden village and has exceptional views across the adjoining woodland and countryside. It also comes with its own lake.
Believed to date back to 1635, the property was in need of updating when Nick Cummins bought it in 2001. There was also potential to uncover and reinstate period features that had been hidden or lost.
The first jobs, though, were to strap the house to prevent any movement, before rewiring and changing the oil-fired heating system to a gas system.
Nick says: “We also opened up three fireplaces, stripped all the woodwork and doors and restained the woodwork throughout. We exposed many of the old beams which had been covered in the so-called ‘flat fifties’.”
While the property has an abundance of historic features, three of its stained glass windows are now in the William Morris Gallery in London. The triptych, entitled “The Lady of Woodbank”, was designed by Dante Gabriel Rossetti in 1861 for the Heaton family who owned the house. Rossetti was a poet, artist and illustrator, who founded the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood in 1848 with William Holman Hunt and John Everett Millais.
Outside, 300 sq yards of cobbles were set on the driveway and front terrace, lawns were relaid and tons of silt was dredged out of the lake.
The house has a large reception hall, cloakroom, dining kitchen, dining room, utility room, sitting room and a snug. Upstairs, there are five bedrooms and three bathrooms
Outside, there is a garage and a formal garden with lake, woodland area and many mature trees, plus an entertainment area to the rear of the property with views over the lake and countryside.
The 3.26 acres of grounds are part of the Wildlife Trust’s sites of interest and include a large heronry with some 50 nesting pairs at the last count.
The Cummins are selling to downsize. Nick says: “We have had 17 good years at the house but our children have grown up and we are now looking to move somewhere smaller. This has been a great place for the children to grow up, with lake to swim in and the woods to play in.”
For more details on Woodbank, contact Dacre, Son & Hartley, tel: 01274 560421, www.dacres.co.uk
*Harden is one of the Aire Valley’s most sought-after villages and is a five minute drive from Bingley, where there is a railway station with trains to Leeds and Bradford. The town also has shops, restaurants and bars and other amenities. There are two high schools, Bingley Grammar and Beckfoot.