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Homes In View | A Voyage of Discovery


LEFT: Looking through into the conservatory.


BELOW LEFT: It is essential to keep the conservatory warm throughout the year.


RIGHT: Gardening is one of Jen’s passions and, on chilly days, she can still potter inside.


FAR RIGHT: Houseplants enjoy a bright windowsill.


BELOW RIGHT: Jen’s dog, Digger.


continued from page 20


evidence of children, grandchildren and her parents predominate. One piece which stands out from the crowd is a gold picture frame which holds a photo of Jen’s late mother, Rene. ‘I took the frame with me to my sixtieth party – at the local Indian restaurant and sat her at the end of the table. It just felt right that she should be there,’ she admits with a chuckle. It seems fi tting that one of her grandchildren is also


named Rene. Most of the pieces of furniture have been inherited so the house is an eclectic mix, but this increases rather than reduces its charm. Upstairs are several bedrooms which, once fi lled


with noisy children are now quiet. There’s also Rod’s book-lined study and a bathroom. However, it’s Jen’s bedroom which proves an unexpected delight. She loves travelling and one of her favourite destinations, especially with her daughters is Thailand – shopping is in the genes! The silk hangings and saris are all from Bangkok, the unusual wallpaper from France. ‘We’ve always kept in contact with the family where our daughter Shelley was the au pair and it was while we were visiting her in France that I found this paper in a DIY shop, Le Roi Merlin, just outside Paris. It was only £15.00 a roll. I knew as soon as I saw it that it was right. It’s actually made of straw – I think its called pai Japanese,’ says Jen enthusiastically. It’s clear that Jen and Rod have never regretted


buying the house he discovered on that cycle ride all those years ago. As Jen remembers, ‘We used to live in a modern Allison home with fi ve bedrooms and a conservatory. We didn’t need to move – it’s not as if we were bursting out at the seams or anything, but we’d done everything with it that we could.’ However, they couldn’t have hoped for a better home in which to bring up their three daughters Shelley, Stephanie and Alison, and their son Nicholas. The house is still a meeting place for the whole family including the grandchildren , where the memories can carry onto another generation.


22 Traditional Homes & Interiors | December 2010 – January 2011 www.thimagazine.com


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