This wonderful three-bedroom detached house extends over 1,400 sq ft and is a highly original example of the Arts and Crafts movement in Eastbourne, the façade draws stylistically on the architecture of the low countries, with a distinct Dutch Gable. Nationally, it is a rarity for the original fabric of houses of this era to remain intact to this extent. The house has a large mature garden, with a beautiful weeping willow.
Setting the Scene
Glynde Avenue was one of the first streets to be constructed in the Hampden Park area of Eastbourne following the area’s sale to the Eastbourne Corporation in 1901. The wide, curved avenue was built in 1909 to much acclaim for the quality and variation of its architecture, as well as its implementation of the principles of the Garden City movement. For more information on the area, please see the History section below.
The Grand Tour
The house occupies a wide plot, with a driveway to the right extending beyond the home’s footprint and leading to a large single garage. Entry to the house is through a front door that opens to a glazed vestibule with beautiful original features.
The hallway retains its original floorboards, which lead to a bathroom on the right and a pair of reception rooms on the left. These are generously sized spaces, bathed in morning and evening light respectively. The rear reception room has glazing running the full width of the space and a central door opening onto the large, mature garden.
To the right lies the kitchen; another wonderfully bright space, it retains a multitude of original features including a larder, a hatch leading to the rear reception/dining room and a magnificent dresser with brass hardware.
Stairs ascend to a half-landing with an exceptionally large airing cupboard, which could easily be repurposed and offers the opportunity to further enlarge the home.
The two well-sized bedrooms on the first floor overlook the garden, with the larger main bedroom at the front of the plan illuminated by an oriel window. The scale of the room offers tremendous versatility in terms of layout; a family bathroom lies adjacent.
The Great Outdoors
The large west-facing garden lies to the rear of the house and receives light throughout the afternoon. It is wonderfully private and benefits from an abundance of mature planting including rosebeds and herbs. The focal point is a large weeping willow, which provides a delightful shaded area for alfresco dining. There is also a small orchard with mixed fruit trees including pear, plum and apple.
Hampden Park is less than a five-minute walk away and extends over 90 acres. The park retains the lake mentioned in the History section below and is an attractive haven for wildlife, with a mixture of parkland, woodland and gardens.
Out and About
Hampden Park is well located for shops and activities. Within the park itself is a cafe and tennis courts, while a touch beyond the perimeter of the park lies a David Lloyd Centre. There are several supermarkets nearby including a large Tesco, Sainsbury’s and Morrisons. Waitrose is a 10-minute drive. Travel into Eastbourne town centre takes 10 minutes by car or 4 minutes by train and offers a wide selection of good restaurants and eateries including Cru, Skylark, Gr/eat, Exquis French Bistro and Flamenco Tapas.
Eastbourne is home to the acclaimed Towner Gallery among others. There are also several antiques dealers and shops, such as Crown Antiques; along with antique and rare books dealer, Camilla’s Bookshop.
Hampden Park train station is a five-minute walk away and offers frequent services to Hastings (27 minutes), Brighton (27 minutes) and London Victoria (1 hour and 27 minutes).
The area now known as Hampden Park was once part of an estate owned by the Marquess of Willingdon, comprising largely woodland and a lake. The land was left uncultivated as a decoy to attract wildfowl with which to stock the estate’s kitchens. The land was then sold to the Eastbourne Corporation under the proviso that a new road be constructed linking Eastbourne with the parish of Willingdon; this, in turn, was sold to development companies.
Following the sale by the Marquess of Willingdon, the Artizans Labourers & General Dwellings Company purchased the land around Glynde Avenue from the Eastbourne Corporation, a precursor to the council. The ALGDC was a co-op founded by a band of working men in 1867 and spearheaded by William Austin, an illiterate former navvy. The co-operative structure of the company ensured the artisan builders received a share of profits and thus ensured an exceptionally high standard of work. This is evidenced in many of the ALGDC’s schemes now being listed and/or designated conservation areas; for example, the Shaftsbury Park Estate in Battersea.
The offer of high-quality, aesthetically considered housing, in close proximity to rail links and an abundance of green, open spaces led to Glynde Avenue becoming an attractive proposition for many, as it remains today. The significance of the development warranted a formal opening documented in the Eastbourne Chronicle. Local dignitaries took part in a ceremonial tree planting, emphasising the values of a garden city.
The development also had it own its own publication which laid out the intention to create “no two houses alike, save for the abundance of the ground on which they individually stand.” The same publication goes on to mention the house specifically as “Flemish.” Artists and creatives were drawn to the Avenue including modernist painter Eric Ravilious; indeed, the architectural merits of the development meant that the surrounding streets were built up in the following years to a similarly high standard.
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