Escape to the Country: Jules Hudson abandons house viewing halfway through ‘Off you go!’

Escape to the Country: Jules Hudson abandons house viewing halfway through ‘Off you go!’

Escape to the Country: Couple view the first property

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Escape to the Country aired a brand new episode on Monday and it was up to Jules Hudson to find Jennifer and Graham – who currently live in Faversham – a new house in Herefordshire. With a budget of £700,000, the couple were looking for a “bright and spacious home” which offered a minimum of three bedrooms and an additional garage or workshop. With each house they viewed, Jules let the couple wander upstairs on their own and offered no help or advice. The final time he did it, he told them where the stairs were and ushered them off to explore. 

Speaking about the move, Jennifer said: “It had been in the back of our minds for a long time about one day, perhaps, living the dream in Herefordshire. It wasn’t until lockdown, however, that really gave us the opportunity for us to do this. 

“Key things we’re looking for is space, inside and outside, for friends and family and all the things we’d like to do.” 

The house hunt started in the Wye Valley and the rural village of Peterstow where Jules had chosen a “sprawling barn” to take a look around. 

The property had been converted back in 2004 and on first glance, Graham said: “This is unexpected.” 

But his wife, Jennifer wasn’t convinced with the style of the house: “For me, it’s a maybe. Some of them look really great, others I’m less sure about. So I would be really interested to see how this one works inside.” 

Jules asked: “What would worry you about a barn conversion?” and she replied: “I think it’s perhaps the idea about it being long and thin, but also more importantly, that it may feel like we’re living in a barn.” 

“I don’t know how to answer that one really,” the presenter remarked. “I think you’ll find this one cosy, they’ve done it really nicely. Let’s go and see if I’m right.” 

Jules and the potential buyers headed inside where they were greeted by a generous kitchen-diner which pleased Jennifer: “Oh wow! Lots of space for entertaining family and friends.” 

The living room was of similar proportions, albeit it a square room, and had large windows and doors on two sides that looked out to the garden. 

The barn came with five bedrooms, of which two were on the ground floor and both with en-suites. 

Outside, there was a wrap-around garden and a carport. As for what it was on the market for, the price tag was set at £669,000. 

The second property was in the hamlet of Broad Oak, close to the Welsh border. 

“This is more like it!” Graham remarked upon arrival and Jennifer added: “Looks fantastic.” 

The house dated back to 1789, however, there was a “twist in the tale” as Jules explained, “the current owners decided the house, as was, was too close to the road, took it apart stone by stone, reimagined it and moved it to its current position”. 

“Goodness me!” Jennifer exclaimed. “It must’ve been very close to the road,” Graham suggested. 

When they had entered through the front door, Jules commented: “I can guarantee this is not what you were expecting… a reimagined period property.” 

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“This is 26 years old?” Graham asked and Jules confirmed it was. “It feels older but full of light,” Jennifer added. 

Alongside the large living room, there was a separate dining room, then a kitchen and a conservatory off that. 

Upstairs, there were four bedrooms, a family bathroom and the master bedroom had an en-suite and dressing room. 

As for what the outside had to offer, the garden wrapped around the house, a generous patio and a stone garage. 

For £650,000 the couple could purchase it and Jennifer said there was “lots of potential” and it was “nice to have some budget” for the changes they wanted. 

The Mystery House was situated in the hamlet, The Bage, which was situated in the Golden Valley – lying between the Wye Valley and the border with Wales. 

It was a stone property and came with eight acres and the boundary was a little brook-stream at the bottom. 

“The building itself is fascinating, it used to be a pub,” Jules explained and let the couple inside the property which dated back to the 1800s. 

The kitchen was bright and airy, with a separate eating area and double doors which led to a garden room/conservatory. There was also a boot room next door and another utility area. 

Further into the house, the current owners had opened up the space and had a dining table situated in front of a log burner and a cosy living area towards the back. Another room was used as a snug, while the final was an office.  

“That works really quite well,” Graham said and before he got too excited, Jules reminded the couple there were another two stories to explore. 

“That’s your cue, there are the stairs, off you go!” the presenter remarked. 

On the first floor, there was a family bathroom and a shower room to serve three bedrooms – a single and two doubles. 

The second floor had two bedrooms in the eaves of the house which Jennifer said was “overspill accommodation”. 

Outside, “along with acres and acres of land” there was a “collection of barns, outbuildings and stables”.

It was on the market for £645,000 and the price left the couple speechless. 

“With the eight acres?” Graham checked and Jules confirmed that was right before adding: “If you don’t want all the eight acres, the family selling it are farmers here and will gladly relieve you of what you don’t want, that will, of course, be reflected in the final asking price, subject to negotiation.” 

But Jennifer said they would “want the land” and was pleased with the price. 

When Jules met Graham and Jennifer later that day for a debrief, those watching at home saw the couple explain how the Mystery House offered a real “project” for them to “get their teeth into” and as a result, they were going to seriously consider buying it. 

Escape to the Country airs weekdays at 3pm on BBC One. 

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