My new house used to be 2 quarry cottages and is a solid built stone house, that has been extended by the previous owner, who lived here for 30 years. The house is about 250 years old and is nestled in a 2.5 acre site, designated as SSSI, as is the surrounding area and nature reserve. It was obviously this that first attracted me to this place and I never dreamed I would be able to buy something like this after selling my Lichfield home. Property prices were high in Lichfield, and my lovely house (purchased in rather a mess some 25 years ago) was a unique and beautiful place that was snapped up. Prices in Wales are considerably lower, allowing my dream, of owning somewhere with enough land for me to explore and develop for wildlife, to become a reality.
Gwyllt Hollow consists of a plot within, what used to be, a limestone quarry. The habitats are driven by the variations in the underlying geology and soils. There is a patch of woodland around a mini quarry dip, a boggy area at the base of this part and then there are more open, grassed areas. Mature hedges and trees abound and all are dropping with mosses and ferns. There is even a little south-facing veg garden in need of an overhaul, plus numerous fruit trees.
I am surrounded by open countryside and part of my plot borders a nature reserve. The plot is just incredible and will provide me with many opportunities to watch and film the wildlife here.
In addition (as if it can get better!) I have a series of outbuildings, one of which will become the workshop I have always dreamed of! I have never had a real outdoor space to work in. This consists of a room off of a large, open garage port area. It has several windows, including a huge floor to ceiling one, which was covered in wisteria.
Most of my miscellaneous stuff from removal was stored in this garage port and I am still sorting through it. The workshop was full of wood and a lot of other stuff leaft by the previous owner. He asked me what I would like to keep and, to be honest, I said yes to most of it! There is a just mind-blowing amount of wood here, also in the several work stores on site. Some really beautiful bits of oak, in particular, then a ton more; some good for building, others I'm thinking shelves and some fab wildlife boxes and projects! Then a mixture of tools and a gorgeous old metal drawer cabinet. I spent a very long day, clearing the workshop area and trying to start to get it into a space I can work in.
after a good few hours, I'd cleared the area. The end triangle is open but there is an over-hanging roof. I placed wood on the beams to start creating a 'ceiling' of sorts and trimmed the wisteria and cleaned this fabulous window!
With the wisteria trimmed, loads of light flooded into the area!
I need a space to work and plan projects, as well as a larger workbench, which I will make in the coming months. In the meantime, I had an IKEA desk I had bought from Lichfield. The frame fitted in the space and I raised it so I could stand at the space. I didn't need it in the house and, with a bit of trimming, it fitted into the far corner. I found a piece of wood to fill the back section and I was chuffed with the results, along with some other misc furniture I didn't need in the house. A lick of paint on the wall and it was looking good!
I started to bring in the shelving units I had had in my shed and garage at home and it has started to come together, although a lot more sorting needed!
The bird cut-outs are from a show I did many years ago and have been in the loft. They fit perfectly in here!
I can see myself spending many hours in here and, once I have my workbench built, it will be wonderful to have my own workspace.
Finally, many have asked about Wren and Teasel. I am amazed at how quickly both of them have settled in!
This place really does feel like it was waiting for us and has felt like home within a few days. I know we are all going to be very happy here!