Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Escape to Enjoy the Good Life

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Escape to Enjoy the Good Life

Article excerpt

Byline: Francesca Craggs

ARY Barber likes nothing better than to take in the sea views from his stunning Northumberland home.

GA former solicitor, he and wife Andrea escaped the rat race nine years ago to embark in a project to transform redundant farm buildings in Wandylaw, near Bamburgh, into homes.

Gary said: "We bought the whole site which included around 12 former farm buildings. On the day we completed the purchase, we sold seven of them to self builders and created the development together."

The work took around 18 months to complete and Gary and Andrea kept The Granary as their home. The couple have run a successful bed and breakfast business from the property for the past few years.

"I had my own solicitor's practice in Manchester and decided to take one or two years off. That was about eight years ago.

"Running the bed and breakfast is a really nice lifestyle choice," said Gary.

With spacious living areas and five large bedrooms, the property is a perfect home for families. Or for those wanting a change of lifestyle, it could also be continued as a B&B. The couple wanted to retain the traditional charm of the building, while add a contemporary twist.

Gary said: "The house has some lovely traditional features, but it's also all singing and dancing. There's a ground source heat pump, underfloor heating, and sound systems throughout."

Originally a granary and smithy, the house is brimming with character. There are original arches, exposed ceiling trusses, stone fireplaces and solid oak doors. At the hub of the house is the large breakfasting kitchen, Gary's favourite space.

He said: "It's a great big long house, but we always end up spending most of our time in the kitchen. You have seating areas, dining table, and kitchen with electric Aga. We spend 90% of our time in here."

There is a sitting room with oak flooring and inglenook fireplace housing a multi-fuel stove, as well as a garden room, double bedroom, sun room, and shower. …

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