Brookside is a charming 15th century stone cottage enviably positioned in the tranquil village of Buckland. Deep in the heart of the Cotswolds, the cottage is enveloped by approximately ⅓ acre of mature gardens with a babbling brook passing through the perimeter. Accommodation extends to over 1,500 sq ft internally, housing three bedrooms and generous living quarters. Brookside Cottage is a wonderful example of a perfectly preserved Cotswold home, with its dormer and mullion windows, inglenook fireplaces and deep limestone walls. The surrounding countryside offers an abundance of scenic walks, including the famous Cotswold Way, which passes behind Brookside’s gardens.
Setting the Scene
Set within a conservation area, Brookside Cottage lies towards the end of the village, which is home to only 200 residents (2011 Census). The cottage is on a peaceful no-through road and overlooks the Church of St. Michael, a beautiful Medieval building with a handsome church tower that rises above lush greenery in the foreground. It is home to the Treasures of Buckland, notable ancient relics that include the Buckland Cope, the Mazer and a copy of Foxe’s Book of Martyrs. The immediate area is steeped in history; it is believed that an earlier house on the same site as Brookside was mentioned in the Domesday Book, with first records of the village being assigned under charter in 709 AD.
The Grand Tour
Buckland village lies at the end of a bucolic arcade of arched trees and ancient hedgerows. Brookside Cottage is found towards the end of the lane, past pretty neighbouring cottages. White picket gates open onto a pea-gravel driveway, leading to the handsome stone porch of the main entrance. The current owners, however, prefer to enter at the rear stone terrace – one of several outdoor seating areas. A small hallway acts as an informal boot room and general disrobing area. To the left is a shower and laundry room, and to the right is the kitchen, with the sitting room directly ahead. Honed and hand-chipped flagstones run underfoot throughout.
The kitchen is a handsome space, filled with oak cabinetry and granite worktops. A double butlers sink looks out over the rear gardens through one of the stone mullion windows, and a small pantry to the side offers additional storage. The dining area lies towards the front of the house, with a capacious stone hearth and Esse Ironheart Woodburner at its centre. A soft seating area is set within the bay window – perfect for whiling away lazy afternoons with a good book beside the roaring fire. The generous sitting room is also at the front of the plan, with its own handsome stone hearth and working fire. Exposed oak beams and deep stone walls create a sense of comfort, grounding the space, while an amazing quality of light pervades the whole house – perhaps surprising amounts, for a home of such traditional proportions.
An open tread staircase leads to the generous upstairs landing. The main bedroom is at one end, decorated in beautiful floral wallpaper and home to a stone hearth, log burner and dual-aspect dormer windows that offer charming views of the church tower and surrounding greenery. A wall of generous built-in wardrobes affords plentiful storage. Two further bedrooms lie off the hall, also beautifully wallpapered, with a light and spacious family bathroom at the very end overlooking the rear gardens. Original oak floorboards gently undulate throughout the rooms, hinting at the long and varied history of Brookside Cottage.
The Great Outdoors
The garden is arranged as a series of individual spaces, with plenty to see at every turn. A stone terrace stretching the width of the house acts almost like an additional room in the warmer months, overlooking a lawn planted with a beautiful magnolia tree and Acer maple trees. A magical six hundred-year-old yew tree – believed in ancient folklore to protect a home’s inhabitants – sits in the centre of the grounds. Stone steps lead up to a kitchen garden, currently offering chard, artichokes and cavolo nero, and raspberries later in the year.
To the side of the house is another lawn, surrounded by shrubs, an original stone outhouse and a water well; Brookside’s version of garden follies. Several seating areas are carefully positioned throughout the garden, including one beside the brook that runs through the southern part of the gardens, which is shaded by a beautiful weeping willow and surrounded by wild garlic and ferns.
To the front of the house is a mature apple tree and shrubs including rhododendrons and roses. The house itself is enveloped by mature greenery at ground level, framing the windows beautifully. There is also rear access, with separate gates and parking for additional vehicles if needed.
Out and About
The village is home to Buckland Manor, a comfortable country house hotel tucked away beside the village church with an excellent restaurant, bar and gardens. The neighbouring village of Broadway is just two miles away and often referred to as the “Jewel of the Cotswolds”. Broadway High Street is lined with chestnut trees and honey-coloured limestone buildings, and is home to excellent local amenities including several distinguished independent retailers and grocers. Evesham and Moreton-in-Marsh are slightly further afield (a 20-minute drive) and offer further amenities. Trains from Moreton-in-Marsh run hourly to London Paddington with an 80 minute journey time.
Countless other attractions lie a comfortable drive away, including the towns of Stow-on-the-Wold and Chipping Campden. Famous gardens and great houses nearby include Hidcote, Highgrove, Sezincote and Snowshill Manor. History, both natural and built, surrounds the area from the borders of Worcestershire down to the perimeters of Oxfordshire.