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West Lawn Gardens
Sandgate, KentSold

West Lawn Gardens

With a south-facing outlook, it’s possible to see the sun rise and set over the sea

This remarkable five-bedroom, late Arts and Crafts house is in a wonderful position, nestled into a hillside next to Sandgate’s beach and a stone’s throw from its bustling high street. Built in c1930 and extending to almost 2,300 sq ft, the house has been recently restored by the current owners, creating a wonderful family house alongside a separate one-bedroom annexe. The work celebrates the building’s original features, as well as a verdant stepped garden and a south-facing terrace.

Setting the Scene

The house is approached via an unpaved road, which leads to its garage and garden gate. Perched on a slope, it has uninterrupted views of the sea. Arts and Crafts in style, it is still home to many original features, from the parquet floor in the sitting room and the kitchen/dining area, to the wonderful staircase in the centre of the house.

The owners and their children often walk down the lane from the house, with their paddleboards in hand, and launch themselves straight from the pebbled beach into the sea. With a south-facing outlook, it’s possible to see the sunrise from the bedrooms in the morning and the sunset over the sea in the evening.

The Grand Tour

There are two front doors; the formal entrance to the rear of the house that opens into a small cloakroom and the side entrance. This now leads into a lovely utility space with coat hooks, a large butler sink and a wall of cupboards. The room has been painted a rich dark green. Adjacent is a wide, voluminous hallway painted ‘Oval Room Blue’ by Farrow & Ball, with beautiful Bert & May tiles underfoot. At the western end of the house is a sun-drenched open-plan kitchen and dining area, with a snug complete with a wall of bookshelves tucked around the corner. The room was recently renovated with shaker-style cabinetry, an Italian granite worktop, and a parquet floor. French doors open onto the sun terrace, perfect for a morning coffee.

Running along the south-facing side of the house is also a sitting room, complete with three striking tall sash windows, the original parquet floor and original paneling on the walls. The room is painted bright ‘James White’ by Farrow & Ball, celebrating the wonderful light that floods in here. There are also two studies on this floor, which could also be used as spare bedrooms, and a shower room.

Stairs ascend to the bedrooms. Arranged along the front of the house, they all share an incredible sea view. The principal bedroom is at the far end of the corridor. Two windows and a pair of French doors open onto a Juliette balcony and frame the far-reaching views, making the room feel gloriously light and airy. A length of fitted, mirrored cupboards line one wall. Opposite, a door leads into a generous en suite bathroom, with a bath and separate shower, all with chrome fittings.

The middle bedroom is a unique space, with the feel of a ship’s cabin. The room has been painted a bright white; vibrant yellow highlights the large window frames and another set of French doors in the centre. The walls are lined with tongue and groove panelling, set against narrow white-painted floorboards. Perfect symmetrical and brightly coloured, the room is almost ‘Wes Anderson’ in style.

Outside lies the annexe; with its own separate entrance, the space feels brilliantly separate from the house and would be perfect for a nanny or rented out as a holiday let. Comprising an open-plan kitchen, dining and living space, a generous double bedroom and en suite is lined with more tongue and groove panelling.

The Great Outdoors

The house is framed by a spacious garden and was professionally landscaped by Tom Williams from Workshop Number 29 Renovations to create a combination of seating areas, raised beds and steps down onto a lawn. In the summer, the home opens its doors to the sun terrace. There are many spots to eat outside, from beside the French doors that open from the kitchen to another more sheltered space tucked around the corner. Fitted with lights, the outside is illuminated in the evening.

Out and About

The house is nestled in the centre of Sandgate, a pretty village adjoining the neighbouring town of Folkestone. The beach that the house overlooks connects Sandgate to Folkestone, and it is possible to walk between the two, past Sandgate Castle (built in c1539 by Henry VIII). Folkestone is known for its rich art scene from the Triennial, the Folkestone Fringe, as well as a wealth of galleries and exhibition spaces, such as in the Creative Quarter and at the Quarterhouse. In addition, the the F51 Skate Park, recently opened, which includes highest climbing wall in the south east.

There is an incredible food scene in Folkestone, with Michelin star holder Hide and Fox serving Modern British dishes with an emphasis on seasonal ingredients and Rocksalt and Little Rock preparing the freshest fish possible, caught from local day boats. There is also a great champagne bar, The Lighthouse and fresh bread from Docker Bakery. The Folkestone Harbour Arm is now home to a variety of independent shops and food kiosks, as well as live music and an outdoor cinema in the summer. Regular farmers’ markets are held in Sandgate Village Hall, as well as at Folkestone West station.

The Military Road canal is a couple of minutes from the house and runs parallel to the beach. It offers the opportunity for paddle boarding or canoeing and wonderful walks towards Dungeness. One of the largest expanses of shingle in Europe, Dungeness is of international conservation importance, as well as being home to Derek Jarman’s house and garden. There is horse riding close by, as well as two sailing centres. The house is about 20 minutes in any direction to places of natural beauty such as the Wye National Nature reserve and the White Cliffs of Dover, home to a great café in the South Foreland Lighthouse. The house is also close to the channel tunnel, making it very easy to nip over to France and close to its lovely coastal towns such as Le Touquet.

There is an array of good schools in the area, including state primary schools such as Sandgate Primary, Saltwood, Seabrook and St Martins, and boys and girls grammar schools for secondary students. Private schools include Northbourne Park prep, as well as the prep and secondary schools of Dover College, Kings or St Edmunds in Canterbury, and Ashford School, all of which are connected by school bus services from Sandgate/Folkestone.

Direct high speed trains run from nearby Folkestone West station to London St Pancras in as little as 52 minutes.

Council Tax Band: F

Please note that all areas, measurements and distances given in these particulars are approximate and rounded. The text, photographs and floor plans are for general guidance only. Inigo has not tested any services, appliances or specific fittings — prospective purchasers are advised to inspect the property themselves. All fixtures, fittings and furniture not specifically itemised within these particulars are deemed removable by the vendor.
West Lawn Gardens — Sandgate, Kent
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