Homes fit for the ultimate valentine
The home is usually the cornerstone of any relationship. So we asked writer Mary Wilson to track down six of Britain's most romantic homes all of which had to be prettier enough to fall in love with. Are you smitten?
Couples can be love struck, loved up or just hanging out with loved ones.
But there’s usually a constant theme to these amorous proceedings – their home. So if walls could speak, we wonder what the bricks and mortar would have to say that were lucky enough to witness some of the most famous affairs of the heart ever conducted.
Here we track down six that have been the scenes of extreme passion of various kinds and which are, should want to give the ultimate romantic gift, also for sale at the moment. This includes the secret location where one of the last century's most infamous, politically damaging and yet passionate affairs took place.
The West Wing, Monkhams Hall, Holyfield, Essex
This is where that most fated love-struck couple, Edward VIII and Wallis Simpson, conducted their elicit affair before he abdicated in 1936.
Monkhams Hall belonged to Edwards’ equerry and was split into three homes after the war. This (pictured, left) is the largest wing with four bedrooms and grand entrance hall and includes a drawing room with extremely panoramic views over Lee Valley Country Park. £685,000, John D Wood.
Mamhead House, Exeter
A home of pure romance, as it was built as a ‘marriage house’ for Robert Newman and new bride, Mary, in 1833.
Their entwined initials can be found throughout the Grade I listed, 16-bedroom house and the family motto, ‘ubi amor ibi fides (where there is love there is trust) is carved above the front door, over the library fireplace and elsewhere.
Love comes at a price though. £8 million, Strutt & Parker.
The Manor, Costock, Leicestershire
This Grade II* listed manor house was bought by the First Lord Boot, founder of Boots the Chemists, as a wedding present for his daughter and as such, it must have seen much love and laughter.
It has six bedrooms, swimming pool, a 1.6 acre garden and a chapel annexe and summer house cottage – perfect for romantic, even illicit, liaisons?
The Island, Newquay, Cornwall
This one-off property is a three bedroom house perched on a large rock on Newquay beach joined to the mainland by a short suspension footbridge which the owners, Lord and Lady Long, are regularly asked by lovelorn men for permission to use as a spot to propose to their fiancée.
They’ve even occasionally offered bed and breakfast to couples for the honeymoon night.
So the property is an obvious business opportunity as well as being one of Britain's most unusual homes. £995,000. Lillicrap Chilcott.
Woodmans, Whatlington, East Sussex
Patience Strong, a 20th century poet, must have been inspired by this house which bursts to the seams with romance. She wrote numerous love poems during her career and had a poem printed inthe Daily Mirror every day.
It has two bedrooms, studio annexe and pretty gardens with a well, where she was often snapped. £535,000 to £585,000, Freeman Forman.
The Old Vicarage, Thursby, Cumbria
This four bedroom house could relate a different sort of love story - not for an individual, but for food.
It was the childhood home of Mr. Isabella Beeton, where she discovered her unending passion for cooking.
She also lived there later with her grandfather.