InigoInigo Logo
Warrens Farm
Little Bentley, Essex£1,225,000 Freehold

Warrens Farm

A handsome façade typical of the era, with a moulded wall jetty supported by curved support brackets

Surrounded by its own beautifully planted garden, this lovely 16th-century farmhouse is set in the lovely village of Little Bentley in Essex. Timber-framed and plastered with a red plan-tiled roof, the house is wonderfully characterful, with later interventions improving its connection with the outside. Unfolding over 3,400 sq ft, the house has an east-west facing orientation, meaning it is brilliantly light and voluminous with wonderful verdant views from every room. Outside, nestled in the grounds, which extend to about 2.7 acres, is a tennis court and a useful games room, which could double as office space. There is also a detached double garage. Despite the house’s rural location, Manningtree station is less than a 15-minute drive, with trains into London Liverpool Street in under an hour.

Setting the Scene

The house, which likely dates back to the 16th century or earlier, has a handsome façade typical of the era, with a moulded long wall jetty supported by curved support brackets. Later 20th-century additions include an elegant bay window found in the sitting room. Internally, striking medieval details, from the inglenook fireplaces to a large moulded bressummer beam, point to a more historic past. Located a short walk from the pretty village of Little Bentley, the house is surrounded by bucolic farmland. For more information, please see the History section.

The Grand Tour

Entry to the house is through a glazed vestibule, a later addition by the current owners. The rear of the house is home to the kitchen, comprising light blue-painted shaker-style cabinetry with granite worktops, a warming Aga, and a sun-filled glazed breakfast room, which leads into the garden.

Distinctive herringbone-brick steps lead from here into the dining room, which is situated in the oldest part of the house. Narrow floorboards complement the exposed beans, and a pair of French doors open onto an east-facing terrace, perfect for breakfast. A snug family room sits in the middle of the plan, with a large inglenook fireplace, now home to a woodburning stove. A more formal sitting room lies beyond, again complete with the original Inglenook. This is a bright room due to the large swathes of sash windows and the addition of a later refined bay window.

In the lovely study, parquet brick runs underfoot and extends up the walls. A useful utility and boot room and a separate guest WC complete this floor.

The first floor is home to four good-sized bedrooms, including the principal bedroom, which is en suite. At the other end of the plan is a bedroom with its own dressing room. There is a family bathroom and a separate shower room. A second staircase leads to bedroom five on the second floor. All bedrooms have sash windows framing verdant views over the garden and farmland.

The Great Outdoors 

The house is approached by a smart shingled carriage driveway leading to the garage. The well-tended and thoughtfully planted grounds extend to approximately 2.76 acres; they are mainly laid to lawn, interspersed with a variety of established trees. Bursting with colour, plants include an approach filled with sweet-smelling roses and lilac. A detached games room within the grounds has great potential to be a generous office. There is also a hard tennis court, which shares the same picturesque and rural views.

Out and About

The village of Little Bentley provides a thriving village life centred on a beautiful church and village pub. Nearby Mistley and Manningtree are also home to excellent local shopping facilities, cafes, restaurants and pubs. Colchester and Ipswich are both easily accessible by car for work or more serious shopping.

The surrounding area offers beautiful exploring locations such as Dedham Vale AONB, ‘Constable Country’, Pin Mill, Wrabness, and beautiful beaches at Harwich, Frinton-on-Sea, Mersea Island and Walton-on-the-Naze. The Guardian recently described the Harwich peninsula as a ‘revelation’ and ‘like Lymington or Rye, without the price tags’.

Notable highlights of the area include the delightful Electric Palace Cinema in Harwich, Grayson Perry and FAT’s ‘House for Essex’ in nearby Wrabness and The Company Shed seafood café on Mersea Island.

Suffolk’s coastline, set in its Area of Natural Beauty, is also under an hour from the house, as is Woodbridge, another picturesque market town often described as the ‘gem in Suffolk’s crown’. It is dotted with independent boutiques, shops, restaurants, and cafes, such as The Table and Honey and Harvey. The river hosts annual music festivals, and several clubs and facilities cater to sporting interests.

There are many good schools in the area, including Orwell Park Preparatory School near Ipswich, Old Buckenham Hall Preparatory School near Brettenham, Framlingham College near Woodbridge, Felstead School to the south near Braintree and New Hall at Chelmsford. Colchester’s grammar schools – Colchester Grammar for Boys and Colchester Girls High – consistently top the league tables.

Despite its rural location, the house is only a 15-minute drive to Manningtree station, from where one can reach London Liverpool Street in under an hour. Colchester station is marginally further afield – 20 minutes from the house – where trains run to London Liverpool Street and Stratford for 50 minutes.

Council Tax Band: G

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.


The name Warrens Farm, or Warren (sometimes spelt Warren, Warne or Wareyn), has been associated with Little Bentley for many years. In 1492 the lane to the south of the present farmhouse was known as Wareyn’s Lane. The earliest will and testament still in the name of Warren was made in 1501.

On the other hand, the name Bentley probably means a clearing in the rushes since ‘Bent’ means a place where rushes grow. The parish of Little Bentley gives rise to two sources of a rivulet, where rushes can be found. Coarse grass is still referred to as ‘bends’ in many East Anglian areas today. Ley, on the other hand, is pasture or unploughed land.

The village church – dedicated to Saint Mary – is mainly 13th century on the north side and 17th on the south. It has a tall, 60-foot medieval tower with its ancient bells still in place. The roof of the nave also still has its original medieval timbers and features rows of beams carved with angels, although the heads were cut off during the Civil War by Puritan iconoclasts.

Warrens Farm — Little Bentley, Essex
Interested? Let’s talk
InigoInigo Logo