It was love at first sight when Andrew Brown walked into this period treasure in Dringhouses, as Brian Page reports.
ANDREW Brown can remember exactly when he moved into his house. “It was the day after David Beckham was sent off playing for England against Argentina,” he says with a laugh.
While the rest of the country was in mourning for England’s 1998 World Cup exit, Andrew was in his own seventh heaven.
“The moment I walked through the door I knew this was where I wanted to live,” he says, remembering his first viewing of this detached period home in Moor Lane, Dringhouses. “It was just the place for me, I knew it straight away.”
In the more than 12 years he has been here, Andrew has not changed his mind. It has been the ideal home for him and wife Lucy.
Andrew has seen his two sons grow up here and move away – and now has another set, with Harvey, nine and Millie, five, also happily at home in what is a brilliantly- spacious family house.
“It has been a great place to live,”
Andrew says, “but sadly I need to move for business reasons.”
Sadly seems to be the right word.
As Andrew takes me on the tour there is an edge of wistfulness as he talks about how the home has changed over the years the Browns have been in residence.
And there have been considerable improvements… Not least in the lovely warm and inviting breakfast kitchen.
It’s a good space, light bubbling in from a big window to the side, overlooking a sitting area, and with a smart range of high white gloss wall, drawer and base units with elegant glazed display cabinets. There’s plenty of space, too, for a range cooker under a large tiled recessed area with solid beam over.
To the side of the kitchen is a dining room, another good space with French doors opening out to the side of the house and with a view down to the garden.
“It’s a nice room,” Andrew says, “but the truth is we hardly use it because we find the kitchen such a great, warm place to sit and chat or have our meals.”
To the other side of the kitchen is a utility room where the washing machine and the boots, hats, jackets and gloves, can be tucked away out of sight and out of mind.
The main living room is a beautifully- styled reception area that manages to combine the sense of space that comes from high ceilings with a sense of inviting cosiness – not least because of the warming sight of a large open fireplace with cast iron insert and a stunning original marble surround.
This is a light and airy room, too, thanks to a sash window to one side and glazed doors leading out onto a sun room/conservatory. This is another high and handsome space, with low brick walls topped by deep windows and French doors which open out onto the garden.
The sun room, at almost 20ft by 15ft, it’s a grand space and has lovely views of the garden.
And as we’re nearly there, we might as well step into what is a lovely open air spot, protected by hedging and fencing, mainly laid to lawn ringed with mature trees, shrubs and plants and with a large paved patio area. Perhaps best of all, at the end of the garden, you have good views across open fields stretching away into the distance.
“It feels very rural,” Andrew says, “even though we are very close to city centre, the ring road and schools and York College.”
Back inside, on the first floor there is a master bedroom with sash windows and views over that open countryside to the back, and with a period-style ornate fireplace at its centre. There’s also a contemporary en-suite shower room. There is a further double bedroom and a bathroom here.
On the floor above, there is plenty of character in the two further bedrooms which have beamed and sloped ceilings (but with plenty of headroom and lots of light thanks to sash and Velux windows).
“The boys had these bedrooms when they were here,” Andrew says. “It’s funny when they come home and see that Millie and Harvey have done them out in very different ways.”
Ah, that wistful tone, again. But then it’s always a good sign when people on the move retain a fondness for their family homes.
Of course, we all like a happy ending. After all, after being vilified for his silly sending off, David Beckham went on to become much-loved and treasured – just like the Brown’s family home.
At a glance...
83 Moor Lane, Dringhouses, York
Reception rooms: 3 Bedrooms: 4 Bathrooms: 2 Gardens: Hard paved area to front providing lots of parking space. Pleasant garden to the rear with views over open fields.
Wow Factor: The superb conservatory/ sun room with views over open countryside just pips the elegant living room.
Contact: Y-Homes. Tel: 01904 707181.